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The Most Expensive Divorce Settlements

Updated on July 20, 2010

Big Dollar Divorce Settlements

Nobody ever said that getting divorced was easy or cheap. But, as these men found out, getting divorced can potentially cost you millions of dollars.

Ted Danson Divorce

Ted Danson, who became a household name while playing the womanizing Sam Malone in hit comedy sitcom Cheers, apparently took that role too far when he started seeing other women while still married to Casey Coates. Most notably, he started to date Whoopi Goldberg after the two filmed the movie Made in America together. The cost of his trysts? A divorce in 1992 and a lump sum payment of $30 million.

Michael Douglas' Divorce

Michael Douglas may be an academy award winning actor, but he wasn't winning any awards with his wife, Diandra. The couple married in 1977, which was before Douglas's career really had a chance to blossom. By 1997, however, Diandra had decided she was fed up with her husband's cheating ways and filed for divorce. Following two years of negotiations, Douglas paid $45 million.

The Most Expensive Celebrity Divorces

James Cameron's Divorce Settlement

Despite his ability to bring cyborgs to life in the Terminator movies and to create one of the most romantic moments in movie history with the movie Titanic, James Cameron was unable to make the same magic with his wife, actress Linda Hamilton. Following a reported 6 year romance prior to getting married, the couple only managed to hold their marriage together for 17 months. In the end, Cameron paid $50 million when ending the marriage in 1999.

Steven Spielberg Divorce

Steven Spielberg and Amy Irving married in 1985, but were only able to keep the fire burning for 4 years. Although the couple managed to split up amicably, it set Spielberg back a total of $100 million.

Neil Diamond's Settlement

Neil Diamond may have been able to keep his singing career alive for four decades, but his marriage finally fizzled out after 25 years. Although is wife, Marcia Murphey, simply cited "irreconcilable differences" as her reason for filing for divorce in 1994, rumors of extramarital affairs were rampant. As a result, Diamond handed over $150 million, claiming she was "worth every penny."

Adnan Khashoggi Whopping Divorce

Saudi businessman Adnan Khashoggi proves you don't have to be a celebrity in order to have a costly divorce. This international arms dealer owned hotels, banks and real estate around the world. As a result, his estimated fortune in 1986 was an astounding $4 billion. Therefore, the $874 million divorce settlement he paid to his wife, Soraya Khashoggi, during his 1982 divorce did not set him back too far.

Rupert Murdoch's Divorce

Murdoch is known for being one of the richest men in the world. Yet, he managed to hold together his marriage to Anna Murdoch for an impressive 32 years. In 1998, the couple managed to split harmoniously - until Rupert forced Anna from the board of News Corp. The move made the divorce proceedings far uglier and Anna managed to walk away with a $1.7 billion settlement. Rupert went on to marry one of his employees, Wendi Deng, seventeen days after the divorce was finalized.


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    • qed profile image


      7 years ago from England

      And still Diandra wants more...

    • Idoknot profile image


      7 years ago

      Money truly does make the world go round. Is there true bliss to split with so much $ ?

    • Kim Lynn profile image

      Kim Lynn 

      8 years ago

      The price of a rich man's error is usally measured in dollars and cents! Seems appropriate, except for those who are left behind. Money will not mend their broken hearts. It can, however, pay for therapy.

    • profile image

      Tulsa Divorce Attorneys 

      8 years ago

      I wonder where Frank McCourt will rank on this list now that Jaimie McCourt has sucessfully gotten the prenup tossed out of court.

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      no mention of Kenny Rogers $80 million settlement, or Garth Brooks' $125 million settlement to Sandy Brooks?


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