Ghana Waves App
Bill Gates and Melinda French Gates’ divorce is final.
A judge officially approved their split on Monday, three months after the philanthropic power couple announced they were dissolving their 27-year marriage.
Court records indicate neither party will receive “spousal support” or change their names, Bloomberg reported. There was no prenup, but the pair reportedly divvied up their joint property in a separation contract, which was not made public or filed with the court.
In this Feb. 1, 2019, file photo, Bill and Melinda Gates smile at each other during an interview in Kirkland, Wash. (Elaine Thompson/)
Though the two have vowed to continue working together at the foundation they established, Melinda French Gates could be ousted after two years if the exes cannot work together. The three-member board is being expanded in the wake of investor Warren Buffet’s departure, given that the other two members are the ex-couple themselves.
Washington state laws mandate a 90-day wait between filing for divorce and finalizing it, Bloomberg noted. Melinda French Gates, as she has begun calling herself, had met with divorce lawyers as early as 2019.
While Bill Gates had stepped down from the boards of Microsoft Corp., which he founded, and Berkshire Hathaway Inc. ostensibly to devote more time to philanthropy, but it was later revealed that he had been pressured to leave over a prior relationship with a staffer.
Since the initial split announcement, French Gates has received more than $3 billion in stock from Cascade Investment, a firm controlled by her ex-spouse. The 65-year-old Gates is worth $150 billion or more, Bloomberg said. It’s not known how much of the Gates French could end up with in this community-property state, but the judge deemed their division plan “just and equitable,” Bloomberg noted.
The couple also committed another $15 billion to the foundation as they worked out their split.