Amazon.com founder and chief executive Jeffrey Bezos and his wife, MacKenzie Bezos, are getting a divorce.
Bezos, who owns the Washington Post, has an estimated net worth of $137 billion and topped Forbes’ list last year of the richest Americans — beating out Bill Gates, Warren Buffett and Mark Zuckerberg — as well as the list of billionaires worldwide.
Washington, D.C., divorce lawyer Sandy Ain, who has handled his share of splits among the uber-wealthy (although he doesn’t rep either Bezos), noted that Washington state, where the Bezoses reside, is a “common property” state — meaning that all assets and debts accumulated during a marriage are divided equally.
Because Bezos is the richest person in the world, a 50-50 agreement would result in the biggest recorded divorce settlement.
But, Ain said, the couple could have a prenuptial agreement — or even a postnuptial agreement negotiated after the marriage — that would trump the law declaring a couple halve everything. And what could be in such an arrangement? “Literally anything they wanted,” Ain said, including a potential provision that property acquired under one party’s name remain theirs.
The couple wed in 1993, a year after meeting at the hedge fund D.E. Shaw and Co., where MacKenzie (nee Tuttle) was a research associate.