Breakups that Broke the Bank: Celebrity Divorce Settlements

Getting a divorce is never a fun occurrence. It is even less fun when it happens in the public eye and has everyone talking about you and your failed marriage, one of the things involved with being a celebrity. Not only are people curious to know why your marriage didn’t work out, but they are just dying to hear how much is being paid in the divorce settlement.

Just as celebrities live big and make big paychecks, their divorce settlements also follow suit. Well, we have gathered for you the most expensive celebrity divorce settlements ever.

Get ready because these numbers will have you falling off your seat.

$741 million

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Businessman and art collector Steve Wynn married Elaine originally in 1963. They were married until 1986. During their marriage, they founded together Mirage resorts in 1976. The couple divorced for the first time in 1986. They reunited a few years later in 1991 and thought that maybe their marriage would work out the second time around. Well, it once again flopped in 2010. During their second marriage, they co-founded Wynn resorts together.

Steve very publicly split the Wynn Resort share with Elaine and she walked away with $750 million in Wynn stock in the divorce settlement. I guess it was a good idea to marry him for the second time.

$48.6 Million

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The legendary English bass guitarist and singer of The Beatles, Paul McCartney married former model Heather Mills in a stunning ceremony at Castle Leslie in Ireland. They have one child together, Beatrice. They both did not expect to be divorced only six years after they got married.

Mills was her own representative for all of the divorce proceedings. McCartney later said that she was gutsy to do this. With his net worth of over $1 billion, the divorce settlement surely was of no inconvenience to his bank account. Through her former marriage to Paul, Heather is entitled to the title of Heather Mills, Lady McCartney, although she doesn’t go by it.

$92 Million

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Madonna and director Guy Ritchie met in November 1998. Ritchie is known for his crime films and has directed films like Snatch, Revolver, and Sherlock Holmes. He became Madonna’s second husband in Scotland in 2000 in an impromptu wedding at the stunning Skibo Castle. A short time later, Madonna gave birth to their son, Rocco. In 2006, they adopted together David, from Malawi.

Unfortunately, the marriage didn’t work out and Madonna filed for divorce just two years later. The marriage ended by decree nisi. Luckily, they came to an agreement regarding their children. Ritchie has since moved on to model Jacqui Ainsley and the two have three children together.

$150 million

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The singer-songwriter, musician, and actor Neil Diamond married production assistant Marcia Murphey in 1969. Their marriage lasted for 25 years during which they had two sons, Jesse and Micah.

Marcia accused Neil of having an affair countless times which led to the pair’s divorce. Neil’s current net worth is $200 million so it seems like the divorce settlement didn’t set him back a lot.

$90 Million

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Just like Demi and Bruce’s marriage was very public, their divorce also had everyone talking. The Die Hard actor was Demi’s second husband. Their marriage lasted for 11 years during which they had three daughters together, Rumer, Scout, and Tallulah.

Their marriage ended in 2000 and Willis made a public statement saying that “he had failed as a father and husband.” Willis credited Will Smith for helping him deal with the situation. Willis and Moore have maintained a good relationship with one another since the divorce.

$4.5 Billion

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Elena Rybolovleva filed for divorce from a Russian businessman and investor Dmitry Rybolovlev. She cited his “serial infidelity,” for their divorce stating that he used to “share his young conquests with his friends, and other oligarchs.” That just ain’t cool.

At first, the courts awarded Elena a staggering $4.5 billion in the settlement in 2014, but after Dmitry appealed, she was granted “only” $604 million.

$45 Million

Getty Images Photo by Robin Platzer/Images Press

In 1977, Wall Street actor Michael Douglas married Diandra Luker, daughter of an Austrian diplomat. The age difference was clearly visible between the two, with him being 32 years old while she was just 19 years old at the time.

It seems like the 13-year age difference had an impact on the couple and they divorced in 1995. They had a son together, Cameron, one year after their wedding. The generous divorce settlement of $45 million didn’t put much of a dent in Michael’s $300 million net worth.

$1.2 Billion

Getty Images Photo by Ron Galella

Scottish journalist Anna Mann and Australian media mogul Rupert Murdoch married in 1967. Anna worked for his Sydney newspaper The Daily Telegraph. She was Rupert’s second wife. 32 years later, the pair divorced in 1999. During their marriage, they had three children together: Elisabeth Murdoch, Lachlan Murdoch, and James Murdoch.

Right before their separation, Murdoch was made a Knight Commander of the Order of Saint Gregory the Great, a papal honour awarded by Pope John Paul II. Their divorce settlement of a staggering $1.2 billion was mind-blowing, but considering Murdoch’s net worth of $18.1 billion, he’ll be okay.

$4.2 Billion

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Amazon tycoon, Jeff Bezos met his now ex-wife Mackenzie in 1992, when she was working in one of his hedge funds. They quickly got married in 1993 and became one of the richest couples in history. They went on to have 4 children (three sons and an adopted daughter from China). After 25 years of marriage, the couple announced it would be divorcing in 2019.

Jeff Bezos is said to have fallen for another woman, Lauren Sanchez, an actor and helicopter pilot. Even though divorces are never simple, it’s good to know that these two at least ended in amicable terms (as much as they could). Mackenzie gave all of her divorce settlement money to charity. Wow!

$168 Million

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Basketball legend Michael Jordan and Juanita Vanoy met on a blind date in 1984. They had two sons together, Jefferey Michael and Marcus James. Seventeen years later they divorced. When their divorce was finalized in 2007, they held the record for the most expensive celebrity divorce. Another record to add to Jordan’s already long list of achievements, we’re sure just not the kind he’s proud of.

But, one thing is for certain, the greatest basketball player of all time could afford to hand over the hefty cost, considering his net worth of 1.7 billion dollars.

$15 Million

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Comedian-actor Eddie Murphy and Nicole Mitchell met in 1988 at an NAACP Image Awards show. A few years later, in 1993, they tied the knot at the Grand Ballroom of The Plaza Hotel in New York City. The model-comedian duo had five children together: Bria, Myles, Shayne, Zola, and Bella.

Sadly, the children couldn’t keep the two together and they got divorced in 2006. Considering Murphy’s success, from projects like Shrek and The Nutty Professor, he definitely could have paid more than $15 million but they had signed a prenuptial agreement. This was unfortunate for Nicole who is reportedly in debt.

$5 Million

Getty Images Photo by Michael Tran/FilmMagic

This is definitely one of the strangest settlements out there. In 1989, Baywatch hunk, David Hasselhoff and actress Pamela Bach got married. They had two daughters together over the span of their marriage.

In 2006, David announced that he was filing for divorce, citing irreconcilable differences. Hasselhoff has struggled with alcoholism, so perhaps that has something to do with it. Pamela got $5 million from the divorce settlement while the Guinness World record holder of the most-watched man on TV got his name “The Hoff.” We’re pretty sure that’s a win for him.

$1.8 Million

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Just a mere 17 days after Murdoch divorced Anna Maria Torv, the $19.3 billion Australian media mogul tied the knot with Chinese-born and Yale graduate Wendi Deng. 17 days! You just can’t make these kinds of things up. At the time, Rupert was 68, while Wendi, 30.

Well, that marriage lasted surprisingly long but also ended in divorce 14 years later. They had two daughters together, Grace and Chloe. With rash marriage choices like that, it isn’t surprising that Murdoch has been married four times and is the father to six children.

$70 Million

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We loved Heidi and Seal together and we were surprised and sad to see them split. The singer and model duo married in 2005 and even renewed their vows to each other every year on their wedding day in front of family and friends.

They were married for seven years before calling it quits. They have three biological children together and Seal adopted Heidi’s daughter from her first marriage. Heidi and Seal announced that they were separating in January 2012, after nearly seven years of marriage. Their divorce was finalized in 2014.

$1 Billion

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British businessman Bernie Ecclestone was married to the Croatian international model Slavica for 23 years. Despite the 28-year age difference between the pair plus the very obvious language barrier at the beginning of their relationship, their love was strong for many years during which they had two children.

Love, however, wasn’t enough to keep the two together (and neither was money) and they divorced. They both hired a divorce attorney in 2009 to discuss the divorce settlement. Slavica meanwhile walked away with a hefty amount of money, $1 billion.

$2.5 Billion

Alamy Stock Photo & Getty Images Photo by Noam Galai

Billionaire businessman Alec Wildenstein and Jocelyn Perisse met when she was a guest at Ol Jogi Ranch in Kenya. They got married in 1978 and divorced 21 years later in a huge divorce settlement with Jocelyn getting $2.5 billion in addition to $100 million every year for 13 years. Their two-year divorce proceedings gained wide media coverage.

The couple is remembered most for their extensive plastic surgeries, specifically Jocelyn who got catlike features to satisfy Alec’s desires. During the divorce settlement, the judge ruled that Jocelyn could not use the money for plastic surgery. That was a great call on his part.

$118 Million

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Indiana Jones star and Hans Solo, also known as the iconic actor Harrison Ford, was married to his second wife, screenwriter, Melissa Mathison for 17 years before their marriage came to an end in 2004. The pair had two children together, Malcolm and Georgia.

Harrison Ford has a net worth of around $240 million and still, their divorce settlement of $118 million seems a bit steep. With five of his films being in the 30 top-grossing films of all times, we’re sure he’s bounced back.

$450 Million

Alamy Stock Photo & Getty Images Photo by Jason Merritt/FilmMagic

The founder of McCaw Cellular, Craig McCaw successfully sold his company to AT&T for over $12 billion. His marriage to California newspaper publisher Wendy Petrak wasn’t as successful and the two divorced after 21 years of marriage in 1995.

She must have had a convincing divorce attorney considering that she walked away with $450 million. Craig is no longer on the list of the 400 wealthiest Americans, but with a net worth of over one billion dollars, we somehow don’t feel so bad.

$25 Million

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It’s no secret that the current U.S president Donald Trump has been married three times. The former businessman and TV personality married his first wife at age 30, Czech model Ivana Zelníčková. Together, they have three children; Donald Jr., Ivanka, and Eric. The two got divorced in 1992, after Ivana found out that Donald was having an affair with actress Marla Maples. Their divorce was the subject of a lot of media attention, and it was featured on New York tabloids newspapers’ covers for 11 days in a row.

The following year Donald married Marla (which also ended in divorce six years later). In 2017, Ivana released her autobiography, Raising Trump, in which she shares her upbringing and the early days of raising children with Donald.

 $25 Million

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Singer and five-time Grammy winner Lionel Richie had an affair with Diane Alexander while he was married to his first wife and college sweetheart, Brenda Harvey. Lionel and Brenda got divorced after 18 years in 1993 so that he could pursue his relationship with Diane. The two also divorced 8 years after having two children together, Miles and Sofia.

Considering that Lionel has sold over 90 million records worldwide and has a net worth of $200 million, we think his bank account survived the $25 million divorce settlement just fine.

$425 Million

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In the late 1970’s when Mel Gibson was still an aspiring actor he fell in love with a dental nurse named Robyn Moore. They tied the knot in 1980 and were married for 26 years, during which Gibson produced, directed, and performed in such movies as Braveheart. Together they have a daughter and six sons.

Gibson admitted in 2011 that their marriage culminated after his drunk driving incident. Gibson took a long 10-year-hiatus from acting until 2006, following several legal issues and controversial statements which were leaked to the public.

$130 Million

Getty Images Photo by Spencer Weiner

Businessman and Chairman of McCourt LP, Frank McCourt, is also the owner of Dodgers Stadium and Fox Entertainment group. In 1979, he married his college sweetheart, Jamie, and they had four sons together. Their marriage ended in divorce in 2011 and their respective divorce attorneys were met with some heavy opposition.

With a net worth of over 1 billion, Frank could spare the $130 million in the divorce settlement. He has since remarried Monica Algarra. He has a total of six children.

$975 Million

Getty Images Photo by Jemal Countess

Harold Hamm is an entrepreneur who is one of the most important figures in the oil and gas industry. He has a net worth of about $14.2 billion. He married Sue Ann Arnall, an economist and lawyer in 1988, and they were married for 17 years during which they had two daughters. They divorced in 2005 but their divorce papers were filed only in 2012.

According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, “She rejected a divorce settlement check in the amount of $974,790.317.77, stating that it “would jeopardize her appeal” with Mr. Hamm. However, she soon thereafter deposited the $975 million settlement check.

$400 Million


Brangelina was the Hollywood ‘it’ couple. The two award-winning actors started their relationship in 2006 after working together on the film Mr and Mrs Smith the previous year. Their scandalous relationship had the tabloids going crazy. Jolie was accused of having instigated the 2005 divorce of Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston. They didn’t make their marriage official until 2014 when they tied the knot at their estate Chateau Miraval in Correns, France.

Over the course of their 12-year-relationship, they grew their Brangelina clan to three biological children and three children who they adopted internationally. In 2016, they sadly ended their marriage. Their widely publicized divorce cost around $400 million.

$14 Million

Getty Images Photo by Chris Lopez

Jennifer Lopez’s life has always attracted media attention. In 2013, the star received the Forbes title as the most powerful celebrity in the world, a pretty huge title to carry.

After breaking up with Sean Combs, the most influential Latin performer in the United States moved on to date former backup dancer Chris Judd. They were married briefly from September 2001 to June 2002. Was the year of marriage really worth $14 million?

$20 Million

Getty Images Photo by Steve Eichner

You’re looking at America’s 36th richest man with a net worth of around $12.7 billion. Ladies and gentlemen, Ron Perelman. He married his 4th wife in 1999, actress Ellen Barkin. They met at a Vanity Fair Oscar after-party and married after one year of dating.

Their marriage only lasted for five years and was apparently a rocky road for the two. Barkins’ acting career brought a lot of strife into the relationship due to her hectic travel schedule. Apparently, Ellen’s divorce attorney secured her a settlement between $20-$65 million and required Perelman to invest a couple of million dollars in the film production that Barkin and her brother George had started.

$103 Million

Getty Images Photo by Peter Dazeley

Australian pro-golfer Greg Norman spent 331 weeks as the world’s Number 1 Official World Golf Rankings ranked golfer in the 80s and 90s. He won 91 international tournaments, including 20 PGA Tour tournaments and two majors: The Open Championships in 1986 and 1993.

He married flight attendant Laura Andrassy in 1981. They were married until 2007 during which they had two children together- Greg Norman, Jr. and Morgan-Leigh. He left Andrassy for World No. 1, Chris Evert, in 2006, however, their relationship also fizzled after a year.

$60 Million

Getty Images Photo by Malcolm Clarke

Country music icon Kenny Rogers was married to actress Marianne Gordon from 1977-1993. During their marriage, they had one son together, Christopher. After 15 years together, their marriage wasn’t working anymore and the pair split and brought on a divorce attorney.

Kenny is one of the best-selling artists of all time who has received many awards including AMAs and Grammys. So, when it came time for the divorce settlement, the Country Music Hall of Fame member could afford to hand over $60 million.

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