When billionaires divorce

A wife says to her husband, “I’m not happy in our marriage”,

The husbands says “ok, how about I buy us a holiday home in the South of France, we could spend some quality time together away from every day strains and stresses”,

She tells him, “no, that isn’t going to fix the problem”,

“Ok then” he says, “how about a yacht so we can go sailing around the Mediterranean?”

Again, she says “no, that isn’t going to fix the problem either”,

He says…..”I’ve offered you a holiday home in the South of France, a yacht to sail around the Mediterranean, what more could you possibly want?”

Her reply…..”a DIVORCE”

And his reply……”WHAT? I certainly wasn’t thinking about spending THAT much” !!!


When most of us have to go through a divorce we hope for a fair share of the assets and hope that the assets will spread far enough to give both parties a reasonable standard of living moving forward. For the mega rich, giving away their well invested millions is even harder and they fight all the harder to keep every dime so that they can remain at the top of the rich list. Recently, a Russian billionaire had to say goodbye to his billionaire status to become a mere multi-millionaire after his ex-wife was awarded one of the largest awards in UK history of £453m.

The laws that apply to the mega rich also apply to us and the Judge held that the wife’s contribution to the family home equated to the millions that the husband had made during the marriage. The couple had been married for over 20 years. The husband made his money from selling shares in a Russian company while the wife remained at home as a housewife and mother to their children. The husband attempted to argue that he had made a “special contribution” to the generation of wealth but the Judge did not consider that the wife’s contribution to the family was anything less than equal.

The Judge found that the husband had “failed to prove any valid reasons which would justify the matrimonial property being divided other than equally 50:50.” The Judge found that the wealth had been acquired during the course of the marriage and should therefore be subject to the sharing principle.

This gives comfort to wives who remain at home to care for their children in that they will be treated as contributing just as much to the family as the husband who goes out to work. Of course, every case is different and each case will turn on its own facts. However, the starting point in most cases will be 50/50 and it will take a lot to persuade the Judge to move away from that position.

At MTB Solicitors we have specialist solicitors to assist with any family law query, contact us for any advice you require.