Tiger Woods and the Cost of Privacy: The Advantage of Negotiating a Settlement in Divorce.

December 22, 2009

By Emily Matson, Family Law Attorney

If Tiger Woods and his wife Elin head for divorce, what will the final dissolution of property and assets look like?

The pair have a prenuptial agreement that reportedly only gives Elin a large award of assets after 10 years of marriage; they were married in 2004, which means they are not yet at the 10 year mark. However, there is talk that the prenuptial agreement may be in negotiation as the couple discuss a possible dissolution of marriage.

You don’t have to have a prenuptial agreement or over $600 million in assets to learn the value of negotiating an agreement in divorce. It is to both parties’ advantage to come to an agreement so that they can use unconventional terms and conditions to achieve what they both want. If they cannot come to an agreement, going to the courts means more conventional outcomes.

For example, the Yahoo! article talks about modifying the prenuptial so that Elin would start receiving payments after 7 years of marriage, but that she would have additional responsibilities, such as agreeing to nondisclosure of the parties’ marriage or the details of the divorce. That is not something that judges will usually require in a divorce decree; but it is something that Tiger Woods, in his understandable desire for privacy, may want to have. He will likely be willing to pay a substantial amount of money rather than have a court order him not to pay any, but allow Elin to sell her story and expose the intimate details of their lives.

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