Top 10 Biggest Divorce Settlements In History

Christine Yankelunas
Top 10 Biggest Divorce Settlements In History
10 Start slideshow

There is no shortage of Channing Tatum movies and hit singles that will keep the hopeless romantics afloat. However, Taylor Swift has made her fortune on recounting the many ways (did we say many ways?) that it doesn’t always work out.
Love hurts. It hurts even more after a divorce that depletes your bank account. We’ve rounded up the top ten most expensive divorces in history where homes, jets, and company stock were used as bargaining power for these bitter exes. We’re sure your prince (or princess) is out there, but hopefully our list makes you think twice before any Vegas nuptials (especially without a prenup).
Scroll through the gallery above and find out which divorce got the top spot!

0 Thoughts?
1 of 10

10. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver

Settlement: $250 to 375 million (estimated)

From afar, they seemed like a fairytale couple who had it all, but when it leaked that Arnold Schwarzenegger fathered a child to one of the family’s staff members, the bubble had burst. Based on California law Schwarzenegger was bound to hand over half of his net-worth, though allegedly was even willing to give more to demonstrate that he was taking responsibility for his actions. As Countess LuAnn so poignantly said, money can’t buy you class, Arnold.


9. Roman and Irina Abramovich

Settlement: $300 million

Maybe third time is a charm for Russian oil billionaire, Roman Abramovich. After 16 years of marriage to his second wife, Irina Abramovich, the two went their separate ways in 2007. Apparently as he became increasingly successful in business, the marriage suffered the consequences. Irina settled for $300 million, but this only scratched the surface of Roman’s fortune at just 1.6 percent of his $18.7 billion net-worth at the time. Though getting just a fraction of her ex’s wealth, we’re confident Irina won’t be living on peanut butter and instant oatmeal anytime soon.

Photo: CARL COURT/AFP/Getty Images

8. Robert and Sheila Johnson

Settlement: $400 million

Perhaps this power couple was too powerful, with the reason for their 33-year long marriage ending being "professional differences," (the duo famously founded the BET Network). Two years before their 2002 divorce, Robert Johnson sold BET to Viacom for $3 billion. Both now ranked among the wealthiest African-Americans in the country, Sheila walked away with $400 million dollars in the settlement.

Photo: Mike Coppola/Getty Images for Hollywood Repor

7. Mel and Robyn Gibson

Settlement: $425 million

28 years and seven children seems fairly binding, however that didn’t stop Mel and Robyn Gibson from calling it quits after almost three decades of marriage. Robyn filed for divorce in 2009, and was awarded half of Mel’s $850 million dollar fortune. On the heels of the divorce, Gibson had a baby with girlfriend, Oksana Grigorieva. With Gibson absent from the big screen these days, he is better known for his rants and bad drinking habit. Turns out, he may not actually know what women want after all.

Photo: Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

6. Craig and Wendy McCaw

Settlement: $460 million

Craig McCaw, who made his fortune after selling his company McCaw Cellular to AT&T for an approximate $12 billion dollars, has clearly had great success in business but we can’t say the same for his love life. Meeting as sophomores at Stanford University, these college lovebirds had a blissful beginning. After growing apart, the two divorced in 1998 and Wendy walked away with a cool $460 million. With this extra cash, she purchased Santa-Barbara News-Press from The New York Times and even had a temporary spot on Forbes’ list of the 400 Richest Americans. 

5. Stephen and Elaine Wynn

Settlement: $740 million

Stephen and Elaine Wynn married in 1963, and Stephen set out on a path to be the business and hotel magnet that he is today (what would the Las Vegas strip look like without him you have to ask). The couple got divorced in 1986, then remarried five years later, and divorced again in 2009 (exhausted yet?). Under the settlement, Elaine reportedly received $741 million in company stock. Considering that Stephen is worth a reported $2.5 billion today, it clearly didn't put that much of a dent in his net-worth.

Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

4. Adnan and Soraya Khashoggi

Settlement: $874 million

At just 15 years old, UK-born Soraya Khashoggi married international arms dealer, Adnan Khashoggi in 1961. Not only was Soraya mother to their five children throughout their 13-year marriage, but she also worked as Adnan’s business partner. There is something to be said for not mixing business with pleasure. The marriage came to an abrupt end in 1974, though Khashoggi promised to continue to support his wife and children's lifestyle post-divorce. Adnan lost his billionaire status and Soraya walked away with $874 million dollars under the settlement.   

Photo: Elisabetta Villa/Getty Images

3. Bernie and Slavica Ecclestone

Settlement: $1.16 billion

When we go through a break-up we get Shake Shack or a pedicure. Former Armani model, Slavica Ecclestone, broke up with husband Bernie Ecclestone and bought a $60 million dollar private jet. In 2009, after the demise of a 23-year marriage to the Formula One racing CEO that ended due to "unreasonable behavior," Slavica was awarded $1.16 billion dollars under the settlement. Something tell us she can afford that jet.

Photo: Clive Rose/Getty Images

2. Rupert and Anna Murdoch

Settlement: $1.7 billion

On the books as the most expensive finalized divorce in history, Rupert Murdoch and Anna Murdoch's marriage ended in 1999 with a very high price tag. 32 years after walking down the aisle and three children later, the Australian media tycoon was ordered by the court to give $110 million in cash to Anna along with News Corp company stock. A couple of weeks after the divorce was finalized, Rupert went on to tie the knot with a much younger, Wendi Deng. In the months to follow, Anna married investor William Mann. Divorce is never fun, but with new loves and hefty bank accounts, we’re not feeling too sorry for these two.

Photo: Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images

1. Harold and Sue Ann Hamm

Settlement: $5.3 billion (not finalized)

When Sue Ann Hamm filed for divorce on May 19, 2012 claiming her husband was having an affair, a 25-year marriage and a colossal fortune hit a breaking point. 67-year old billionaire, Harold Hamm, is ranked number 35 on Forbes’ list of richest Americans. His net worth is estimated at eleven billion dollars, but after the divorce settlement that may change dramatically.

Though the divorce has not yet been finalized, it is projected to be the most expensive public divorce to date. Investors of the ex-couple’s oil company, Continental Resources, may also be affected as his wife is the potential awardee of Harold 68 percent stake in the company. If the cheating allegations are true, we say—more power to you, Sue Ann!

Photo: Jemal Countess/Getty Images for TIME

Next slideshow starts in 10s

5 Foods For More Beautiful Hair

5 Foods For More
Beautiful Hair