Coates & Davenport, P.C.

Amazon CEO to divorce wife after 25 years of marriage

When a high-profile couple decides to divorce, their personal life can be placed in the limelight. For example, people in Virginia may be interested to hear that the founder and CEO of Amazon has announced he and his wife are ending their marriage. Touted as the world's richest person, Jeff Bezos and his wife had been married for 25 years. The couple undertook a trial separation before making the ultimate decision to divorce.

Bezos and his wife have stated that they will continue to work together in ventures and projects, despite their high asset divorce. Bezos has a 16.1 percent stake in Amazon Inc., while his wife is not a direct shareholder in the company. Bezos' shares in Amazon Inc. are worth approximately $130 billion, and his total wealth is approximately $137.1 billion.

According to one expert, both Bezos and his wife have a fiduciary duty not to waste marital assets, keeping the value of these assets as high as possible. One option Bezos has is to buy out his ex's interest in Amazon stock. Another option is for his wife to retain shares in the company, while Bezos retains voting rights.

It remains to be seen how this high-asset divorce will play out. However, even those of more modest means can learn from Bezos' divorce that it may be possible to make an amicable split in which both parties to a divorce are satisfied with the outcome. For some, this means negotiating a settlement out-of-court. Of course, sometimes complications arise necessitating litigation. In either scenario it can help to have professional legal guidance so that one can make informed decisions.

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