October 1, 2023

The Hollywood tabloids are buzzing with their protection of Kevin Costner’s pending divorce from his spouse Christine Baumgartner. The actor, aged 68, was reportedly handed divorce papers after 18 years of marriage to his now 49-year-old spouse.

However this divorce shouldn’t contain years of authorized wrangling, like a few of them do.  As a result of once they married in 2004, Costner and Baumgartner entered right into a pre-nuptial settlement (or pre-nup) – which isn’t shocking since Costner’s been married and divorced earlier than.  He reportedly paid his first ex-wife, Cindy Silva, about $80 million once they break up. 

Costner has apparently discovered from that pricey expertise – and you may, too.

His present pre-nup with Baumgartner expressly covers the problems of kid help and youngsters’s bills, property division, and duty for attorneys’ charges, to call a number of.  (And underneath the settlement, Baumgartner will obtain practically $130,000 per month, in help for his or her three kids).  It additionally offers that Baumgartner should transfer out of their shared residence inside 30 days of her submitting for the divorce.

Importantly, it additionally begins the ball rolling on settling out their funds:   Costner’s authorized staff advises that he has already paid Baumgartner $1.5 million up-front, in line with the pre-nup’s stipulated phrases.

In accordance with some U.S. authorized specialists who’re watching the case, the readability and certainty of this pre-nup is likely to be onerous to problem.  Little doubt it’s been drafted and negotiated by groups of very skilled U.S. Household Attorneys, who’re specialists at crafting ironclad agreements.  As in Canada, the legislation governing these sorts of marriage contracts make them very troublesome to overturn or contest, generally.

This has not stopped Baumgartner from making an attempt, although.  It’s been reported that she is now challenging the pre-nup’s validity, claiming that she felt pressured to signal it. As with Canadian legislation, the contract legal guidelines of California dictate {that a} marriage contract will be put aside, however solely in specified and comparatively slender circumstances. It’s a excessive hurdle to fulfill, particularly when presumably each spouses acquired impartial authorized recommendation previous to signing.

Apparently, Costner’s authorized staff is well-armed in opposition to this kind of assault as properly:  The pre-nup states that if both of them contests its validity – however finally doesn’t succeed – then they need to pay the opposite’s authorized charges, witness charges, and appraisal prices.  And if it’s Baumgartner who launches the unsuccessful assault, then she should repay the $1.5 million advance she’s already acquired.  This type of time period serves to dissuade each spouses from launching baseless makes an attempt to impugn a good and freely-negotiated deal.

The pending Costner-Baumgartner divorce simply goes to indicate:  Whether or not you’re a pair of high-profile superstar spouses, or a mean Canadian couple, getting a pre-nup isn’t a foul thought.