Friday, August 26, 2016

Amber Heard and Johnny Depp - Round Three

So Hollywood's A list couple have settled.
Let's look back.
They married in 2014 with Amber Heard filing for divorce some 15 months later in May 2016 after allegations of domestic abuse.  What baffles is not the short life of their marriage despite it's shocking impact on the world media.  From Johnny Depp’s vast $400 million fortune he was prepared to settle with Amber for $8 million.  That equates to some £533,333.33 per month for every month they were married.  
Amber was looking for more. She did not accept this was sufficient plus she indicated that spousal support should be on the table as well and for Depp to pay her legal fees. 

They have now settled for $7 million... which Amber will donate to charity... The plot thickens...

Almost unheard of to negotiate backwards. What prompted Amber to cave so dramatically? The public fight concerning her domestic abuse allegations removed sympathy from her - she was regarded as a gold digger. She is young and gorgeous but her marketability both as a movie star and as a future spouse to other wealthy gentleman was at risk of plummeting. Maybe she was advised that she was heading into obscurity and public revilement and becoming the next Heather Mills. Maybe emotionally she could no longer cope with victim being made out to be villainess. Maybe she had a better offer on the table and was seeking out a new, far wealthier beau...
What confuses me is that Depp never opted, bearing in mind the complications that money can bring and the vast difference in their wealth, to have a prenup in place. Amber is perfectly successful having appeared in dozens of movies over the years including, Magic Mike XXL, The Danish Girl and the Rum Diary in 2009 (where she met Depp) and she also spent several years as the face of Guess. But Depp owns an island. An actual island.   Amber is probably at the start of her career whereas Johnny at 52, may be asking a lot of us to suspend our disbelief for much longer that he is the charismatic young Captain Jack Sparrow.

As the couple failed to put a prenuptial agreement in place this entitled to Amber to half the money made over the course of the relationship which looks closer to the $30 million mark. Ouch.  

Amber Heard has a lot to be grateful for. Obviously gorgeous, a youthful 30 years old and wealthy enough that she is promising to donate her alleged $7 million divorce settlement to charities including American Civil Liberties Union and Los Angeles Hospital. And the fight is over... well not quite... As reported in the BBC News 

Amber is now accusing Johnny of being a cheap skate. he has paid the $7 million direct to charities and not via her hence saving $7 million in taxes. Sounds sensible to me. Also sounds like Amber is not over this divorce as she wants Johnny to suffer a bigger financial penalty than he was hoping to get away with...
In England and Wales it  is widely accepted that prenups are not legally binding as such, but what they are is persuasive. What they are, is a opportunity to make a divorce quicker, cheaper and less painful.  A romance killer? No. It is no different to a will. If you die you want to make sure the people you care about are protected.  It is no different with prenups. No one wishes death or divorce to come a knocking but at least when/if it does then you are prepared.  

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