How will Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie divide their $400 million fortune?
The Hollywood power couple known as “Brangelina” is no more, but their joint bank accounts live on, and along with custody decisions regarding their six kids, who gets what will be one of the big questions going forward for the blockbuster celebrity split.
Angelina Jolie filed for a divorce from Brad Pitt on Monday citing irreconcilable differences. The Hollywood A-listers have a fortune of around $400 million and shared real estate in Los Feliz, Santa Barbara, New Orleans and the winery Chateau Miraval in France.
Los Angeles based family law attorney, Lynda Sheridan told FOX411 that while the couple has been together for 12 years, their two-year marriage was relatively short in the eyes of the court.
“I understand their marriage is only two years. Spousal support is not being sought and even if it were the length of the marriage is so short it's a non-issue,” Sheridan said. “Their jointly owned, that means both parties are on title properties will be divided equally, except to the extent either of them makes a claim for reimbursement of separate monies used to acquire said properties.”
Sheridan added who gets what property depends when each property was purchased.
“Keep in mind most of these properties were probably acquired before marriage, so only if both parties are on title do I believe there will be contentions of joint ownership,” she said. “The Community property presumption applies to assets and property acquired during marriage.”
New York-based Steven Rabinowitz, a partner in Pryor Cashman’s Litigation, Family Law and Labor + Employment Groups, explained what happens should the stars not have pre-nup.
“Generally speaking, in the absence of a pre-nup, assets acquired during a marriage are split 50-50,” he said. “Assets acquired before the marriage typically remain each spouse's separate property unless those assets were comingled with marital assets or were converted to marital assets (such as by changing the title on the asset from separate to joint).”
Court documents filed by Jolie stipulated that community and quasi community property would be determined.
Sheridan advised that Jolie and Pitt should resolve the division of assets in private arbitration away from the public’s prying eyes.
“If they're smart, the case will be resolved through a private judge so that their laundry isn't fully aired out,” she said. “They can afford that and that's what they should do.”