We've all heard the horror stories involving divorces- they're long, expensive and stressful. The average, run of the mill couple's divorce settlement won't be nearly as costly as those of the rich and famous. Some of the world's most expensive divorces are as follows:
1. Alec Wildenstein and Jocelyne Wildenstein, 1999
The divorce between art dealer and horse racing mogul Alec and his wife Jocelyne became a tabloid and press favorite, but not only on the extreme amount of wealth the Wildenstein family possessed. Reports emerged of young mistresses, domestic disputes involving weapons, hidden assets and a slew of plastic surgeries to help Jocelyne appear more cat-like.
After a lengthy and bitter battle, Alec was ordered to pay his ex-wife an estimated $2.5 billion settlement, along with $100 million for the next 13 years.
2. Bernie Ecclestone and Slavica Ecclestone, 2009
Bernie, a Formula One racing tycoon, and Slavica, a former model, were married for 24 years before Slavica filed for divorce. Bernie claims he had no idea that his wife had initiated a divorce until his attorneys called and said the judge granted the request in under a minute.
Since a large sum of Bernie's money was being held in offshore accounts under his wife's name, Slavica walked away from their longtime marriage with roughly $1.2 billion in assets. According to Bernie, the split was amicable and uncontested. The pair has to daughters.
3. Mel Gibson and Robyn Moore-Gibson, 2011
The Hollywood A-lister and his wife, a former dental nurse, were married for 31 years and had 7 children before their divorce was finalized in 2011. The pair didn't have a prenuptial agreement, which meant that Moore-Gibson was entitled to half of her former husband's assets acquired during their marriage. Given that Gibson had invested in real estate and the film industry, as well as starring in, producing and directing blockbuster hits, the sum Moore-Gibson was due to receive was quite large.
Although most of the records are sealed, the former wife and mother walked away from her longtime marriage with an estimated $425 million. In addition, she is entitled to half of any future earnings Gibson makes from his film career.
4. Michael Jordan and Juanita Jordan, 2007
NBA legend Michael Jordan and former model Juanita tied the knot in 1987 in Las Vegas. The pair signed a post-nuptial agreement a year after they were married that would entitle Juanita to half of Michael's fortune if they ever divorced.
Although the two cared deeply for each other, it is rumored that their divorce was sparked due to the fact that the two lived in different cities. The decision to divorce was mutual, and the two remained civil throughout the proceedings. It was ultimately decided that Juanita would receive a $168 million settlement, along with being awarded custody of their three children and their title to their $5.1 million dollar Chicago mansion.
5. Neil Diamond and Marcia Murphy, 1995
Diamond and Murphy tied the knot in 1969, before the musician became an international sensation. The devoted pair were married for 26 years before filing for divorce in 1994 (it was finalized a year later in 1995). It was widely reported that Murphy received $150 million, which was half of Diamond's massive fortune. If this settlement amount is correct, then Murphy was awarded $5.5 million for every year the two were married.
In a 2012 interview given to The Daily Telegraph, a UK media outlet, Diamond denied that his former flame received the reported $150 million. "That's what the newspapers said but it wasn't true. Somebody made up a number which was totally untrue. I told my former wife, 'Honey, I wish it were true. I'd love to give that to you.' But musicians don't make that kind of money. Businessmen and thieves make that kind of money," Diamond said.
So, did she or didn't she? Only the parties involved know the truth. But, if Murphy did end up receiving the $150 million, it will go down in the books as one of the most expensive divorce settlements yet.
Jocelyn Wildenstein received more than $2.5 billion in her divorce settlement.