Before there was Kimye, there was Brangelina. (And, I’m told, there are a bunch of black and white photos of famous couples from back in the day.) And the greatest celebrity coupling of its time is now coming uncoupled. Angelina Jolie has filed for divorce from Brad Pitt.
I know, I know — it’s a dark time for all of us. But celebrity divorces can often teach us a few lessons about our own relationships, so let’s all take a deep breath and dive into quite possibly the biggest celebrity divorce of all time.
Won’t Somebody Think of the Children?
Jolie beat Pitt to the courtroom, filing legal documents on Monday citing irreconcilable differences. Her divorce petition asked for sole physical custody of the couple’s six children, while only giving Pitt visitation rights. Rumors are that the source of the split has to do with Pitt’s parenting style, which could be why she does not want him to have joint physical custody.
Jolie is reportedly not requesting spousal support as part of her filing.
We Want Prenup!
Perhaps the biggest unanswered question in the split is whether the couple, who first got together in 2004 but waited until 2014 to get legally hitched, ever signed a prenup or a postnup agreement. And they might have been right to take Kanye West’s advice. According to Forbes’ Natalie Robehmed, Pitt has earned almost twice as much as Jolie has since the marriage, raking in around $ 76.5 million to Jolie’s $ 40 million in the past two years. That’s a whole lot of money to divide, to say nothing of the personal property, real estate, and prior earnings the couple may have shared during the marriage.
Though they were married in France, the couple has resided in California and Jolie filed for dissolution in Los Angeles County. California is a community property state, meaning that, absent a prenup or a mutually-approved property settlement agreement, any income made or property acquired during the marriage belongs to both spouses equally, and therefore must be split equally. (Although there are some exceptions for gifts and inheritances.) Whereas property owned by a spouse prior to the marriage would remain with that spouse.
While it seems impossible, the couple is hoping to resolve their breakup quietly. More likely, we’ll all have a front row seat to the end of a relationship that’s been in the public eye since it began.
- Angelina Jolie Files for Divorce From Brad Pitt (CNN)
- Brad and Angie Settle Tabloid Privacy Suit (FindLaw’s Celebrity Justice)
- Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie Are Married: 3 Legal Questions (FindLaw’s Celebrity Justice)
- An Unhappy Ending: Epilogue to ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ Is Divorce (FindLaw’s Celebrity Justice)