No Prenup Means Divorce Could Be Costly for Johnny Depp

June 6, 2016

Famous Hollywood movie star Johnny Depp is about to get divorced from his movie star wife Amber Heard – and it appears that things will be extremely contentious for the celebrity couple, particularly in light of accusations by Heard that Depp attacked her and committed domestic violence on multiple occasions.

Depp, who at the age of 52 remains one of the highest-earning actors in the world and currently headlines multiple blockbuster film franchises, has been married to 31-year-old Heard for just 15 months.

Where You Live Matters: How Judges Divide Marital Assets in a Divorce

California, where Heard filed for divorce, is a community property state, which means that divorcing couples are expected to equally divide any assets earned during the course of the marriage. By contrast, New Jersey is an equitable distribution state, which allows divorce court judges to consider a number of factors when deciding how to equitably divide a divorcing couple’s assets and property that were earned during the marriage.

Some of the factors that NJ judges may consider when determining what constitutes a fair distribution of marital property include:

  • How long the couple was married for.
  • What kind of property the respective spouses entered the marriage with.
  • Each spouse’s age and physical health.
  • The couple’s standard of living while being married.
  • The spouses’ anticipated economic circumstances after the divorce is finalized.
  • Whether one, or both, of the spouses have incurred economic debts or liabilities.
  • A prenuptial agreement, if applicable.

This last factor, the presence of a prenuptial agreement, could be a major sticking point in the Depp-Heard divorce proceedings. Although the couple’s divorce is being heard in California, a community property state, a prenup would have gone a long way toward resolving any potential complications when it comes to dividing marital assets and property.

In fact, the biggest issue in the divorce is likely to be division of property and marital assets. Remarkably, Depp and Heard did not sign a prenuptial agreement before tying the knot. This is “remarkable” only in that celebrity marriages with high net worth individuals typically include some form of prenup to protect the parties in the event that the marriage does not work out.

The financial consequences for both parties could be huge. Depp has earned hundreds of millions of dollars as an actor. According to Forbes, his current fortune stands at approximately $400 million.

For additional information about this explosive celebrity divorce case, read the article, “Johnny Depp’s Divorce from Amber Heard Could Cost Him Big.”

If you are thinking about filing for divorce in NY, or if you are already going through the divorce process in New York, you need to talk to a qualified divorce attorney who can help you protect your property and assets. Jonathan D. Katz is an experienced divorce and family law lawyer who will assist you. Contact Mr. Katz anytime to arrange a free consultation about your case.

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