Divorce Tips from Bezos, Kimye, and the Gateses 

When today’s celebrities begin the divorce process, the public clamors to know the details.  Personalities and net worth bring an additional layer of complexity to an already difficult process.  Divorce lawyers are hired, and the couples begin the process of unwinding their marriage.  And then, in most cases, the public only hears bits and pieces.  This is purposeful.  More than likely, the couple and their divorce lawyers are working hard to reaching a divorce settlement. 

For instance, in 2019, Jeff Bezos and MacKenzie Scott informed the world that they would be divorcing.  Speculation swirled around whether there was a pre-nuptial agreement and how much money would trade hands.  While the world waited anxiously, Bezos and MacKenzie’s divorce lawyers worked behind the scenes to reach a divorce settlement—with the divorce being finalized shortly after it was announced and filed.  

 Similarly, in 2021, Bill and Melinda Gates also told the world they were divorcing.  Like Bezos and Scott, the Gateses resolved reached a divorce settlement—with their divorce being resolved four months after the announcement. 

 It does not matter whether you’re Jeff Bezos and MacKenzie Scott, Kayne West and Kim Kardashian, or Bill and Melinda Gates, usually the best way to resolve a divorce is by settlement.  Like Bezos and Scott or the Gates, this can come in the form of reaching a divorce settlement through structured negotiations.  Or, in the case of Kardashian and West, it can come in the form of approaching the process intentionally with an eye towards the future.  These approaches are not reserved for celebrities, and typically result in a more palatable resolution.   

 Over the years, I have listened to family court judges compliment couples on reaching divorce settlements.  The compliment to the couple is given because judges understand that the couples have a better idea of how to resolve their differences rather than the result of a contested trial.  Now, this is not to say that all cases can be resolved by settlement.  There are some cases that just need to be resolved by a contested trial—some issues cannot be resolved by agreement. The following are some tips to consider when attempting to resolve your divorce: 

  • Dirty laundry belongs in a washer, not on the line:  One of the reasons people work toward resolving their divorces amicably is a matter of maintaining privacy.  In South Carolina, family court is a court of public record. Meaning anyone and everyone can go to a courthouse and look at the documents filed in a family court matter.  Reaching an amicable resolution may prevent the need for contested hearings and/or filings, lessening the amount of private information that would be made public. 
  • Divorce may end a marriage, but it doesn’t end a relationship:  If you and your spouse have children, then you will have some sort of relationship with that person for the rest of your lives.  Your children may graduate from college, get married, have children, become the President of the United States, or win the Nobel Peace Prize.  And you will share those special events with your children and the other parent.  Reaching an amicable resolution helps ensure that you and your spouse can maintain an amicable relationship in the future.  This is a benefit for the family unit (you and your children) because it allows you to move forward without paying the extra baggage fee. 
  • To thine own self be true:  As mentioned above, no one knows your family better than you.  Reaching a divorce settlement allows you and your spouse to be creative in dividing assets, resolving children’s issues, and dealing with support.  In the long run, this may be better for your family, than battling it out in court.  It gives you the ability to create a sensible way forward.  It also gives you the ability to help define how your family may find closure.  Think Gwyneth and conscious uncoupling. 

This firm has experience in helping clients reach divorce settlements. The law provides us with the ability to resolve any number of situations, including complex ones, with a tailored solution for your specific situation. Please contact us if you think you are facing a divorce or similar issue, and we will be happy to assist you.  With our client first, client focused approach, we understand that no two families are alike, so every case should be resolved on an individual basis.  

 

Jonathan W. Lounsberry is an associate with the law firm Harrison White, P.C. Click here to read more about Jonathan.

The posts on this website/blog are published as a service to our clients and friends. They are intended to provide general information only and should not be construed to be formal legal advice regarding any specific situation and should not be construed as forming an attorney-client relationship. Success in the past does not indicate the likelihood of success in any future representation.

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