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The Top 10 Most Expensive Divorces of All Time

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The Top 10 Most Expensive Divorces of All Time

                Divorce can be a trying, frustrating and expensive process for anyone. Just how expensive a divorce is may depend on the assets being divided. Here are the 10 largest divorce settlements according to

10. Greg Norman and Laura Andrassy: $103 million

After 25 years of marriage, the Australian golfer split from his wife, before marrying former #1 ranked tennis player Chris Evert. His marriage to Evert only lasted 15 months; he moved on to marry his interior designer Kirsten Kutner in November 2010. Norman, known as “The Shark”, has become an entrepreneur with ventures in boating, wines, among others.

9. Harrison Ford and Melissa Mathison: $118 million

Hollywood icon Harrison Ford was married to Apocalypse Now screenwriter Melissa Mathison for 18 years. A year after his separation, he began dating Ally McBeal’s Calista Flockhart. They married in June 2010. His continued box office success has helped him recover from the sizable payment made to Mathison.

8. Neil Diamond and Marcia Murphey: $150 million

The American singer-songwriter divorced his wife after 25 years of marriage. TV production assistant Marcia Murphey left with half of his $300 million fortune. This was Diamond’s second marriage and he said that Murphey was “worth every penny”. The singer later married his manager, Katie McNeil, on April 12, 2012.

7. Charles Edgar and Marlene Fipke: $200 million

Canadian prospector and diamond magnate Charles Edgar Fipke divorced in 2000. Marlene’s settlement included a 20% share of the mine. Charles Fipke currently breeds thoroughbred racehorses.

6. Michael and Juanita Jordan: in excess of $260 million

Basketball legend Michael Jordan married Juanita in 1989. She filed for divorce in 2002, before reconciling. Unfortunately, divorce papers were filed again in 2006. In 2011, Jordan proposed to Cuban-model Yvette Prieto. Forbes Magazine in 2010 listed Michael Jordan as the 20th most powerful celebrity in the world. Along with his numerous endorsement deals, Jordan is currently the majority owner of the NBA’s Charlotte Bobcats.

5. Mel and Robyn Gibson: $425 million

Mel Gibson accrued his fortune through his success in Hollywood. His wife Robyn had been a part of that success for 26 years. The Lethal Weapon actor never signed a prenuptial agreement and under California Law, Robyn was awarded half of his estimated $850 million wealth. The controversial actor has since had a very toxic relationship with Russian pianist Oksana Grigorieva.

4. Craig and Wendy McCaw: $460 million plus

After meeting in Stanford University, the couple married and went on to start a cable TV company (which sold for $755 million) and built and sold a cellphone company to AT&T for $12 billion. Wendy used a small portion of her settlement money to help bring the killer whale Keiko of “Free Willy” fame back to the wild. Craig McCaw later married the former United States Ambassador to Austria, Susan Rasinski. McCaw is also famous for buying the most expensive car ever sold: a 1962 Ferrari 250GTO, originally built for Sir Stirling Moss. He paid $35 million for it.

3. Bernie and Slavia Ecclestone: £750 million

The president and CEO of Formula One was married to his second wife Slavia for 24 years. Despite their 2009 divorce, the Forbes World’s Billionaires List of 2011 ranked Ecclestone as the 4th richest person in the UK with an estimated fortune of $4.2 billion. He later married Fabiana Flosi in August 2012.

2. Adnan and Soraya Khashoggi: $850 million

Soraya, formerly Sandra, sued the Saudi businessman for $2.54 billion in the divorce. Ultimately, she walked away with $850 million. Adnan had made his money buying and selling arms for the Saudi Royal family. He later created Triad, based in the tax exempt Switzerland, which owns banks, hotels and real estate around the world. The former richest man in the world went on to marry his second wife Lamia (formerly Laura Biancolini before converting to Islam).

1.Rupert and Anna Murdoch: $1.7 billion

The Australian media mogul is the founder, Chairman and CEO of global media holding company News Corporation. He married his second wife Anna, a Scottish-born journalist, in 1967. They divorced in June 1999. 17 days later, he married Deng Wendi. In 2011, Forbes estimated Murdoch’s wealth at $8.3 billion.

While these divorce settlements are not typical, the issues involved are. Whether dividing billions of dollars in assets, or hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt, important issues of valuation, characterization and division need to be addressed. There may or may not be issues of child or spousal support to consider and the guidance of an experienced family law attorney is strongly recommended.

While no former clients of The Law Office of Matthew J. Rudy appear on the list above, we have extensive experience dealing with the valuation, characterization and division of marital assets involving marital estates both large and small. For a free one-hour consultation on these issues, please contact our office

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  • Guest
    Jean Tuesday, 13 November 2012

    We think we are paying

    after reading this article I should be thankful .

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