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Family and Criminal Law Blog

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

A Look At the Most Expensive Divorce Settlements Of All Time

What factors should high net worth individuals consider a divorce?

When ultra-wealthy couples divorce, it often makes headline news. Mega celebrities like Tiger Woods, Madonna, and President Trump have all been hit with costly divorce settlements. These massive divorce settlements are nothing compared to the top divorce settlements of all time. Our Texas divorce lawyers review some of the costliest divorce settlements in history below.

The Wildensteins

The costliest divorce documented in history is that of Alec and Jocelyn Wildenstein. The Wildenstein’s divorce in 1999, with art dealer Alec being forced to pay his wife Jocelyn a whopping $2.5 billion then $100 million for the following 13 years. In sum, this record setting divorce settlement amounted to $3.8 billion.

Rupert Murdoch and Anna Torv

Another high profile divorce happened around the same time as the Wildenstein’s involving media giant Rupert Murdoch and his journalist wife of 31 years. The couple reached a divorce settlement rumored to be $1.7 billion.

The Wynns

This Las Vegas casino owning couple married and split twice. Steve and Elaine Wynn’s second divorce was confidentially settled, but it was estimated to have been $1 billion.

The Rybolovlevs

In 2014, Elena Rybolovlev sought a divorce from her husband, a Russian businessman due to Dmitry’s alleged infidelity. The court initially awarded Elena $4.5 billion, but on appeal, this award was reduced to $604 million.

Mel Gibson and Robyn Moore

Actor Mel Gibson split from his wife Robyn Moore in 2006. He was forced to pay Moore $425 million, which equated to half of his net worth at the time of the divorce.

The Challenges of a High Stakes Divorce

All divorces present their own unique set of challenges, but for a high net worth couple, there are some special considerations. High net worth couples will be primarily concerned with the division of their marital assets. Most high net worth families will have a wide range of assets and multiple income streams. In a divorce, each spouse will want to ensure the other spouse fully discloses their assets. If there are any children involved, the court will have to rule on child custody and child support as well. A divorce attorney will assist you in fighting for your fair share of the assets, while attempting to make sure the divorce stays as private and out of the public eye as possible.


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