In what could be the largest-ever divorce settlement in U.S. history, oil tycoon Harold Hamm’s wife will receive almost $1 billion. The chief executive officer for Continental Resources tried to say that the company’s success was due to the rising price of oil and other market factors. However, the judge ruled that the CEO had a central role in the growth of the business during the marriage.
The couple married in 1988, and Sue Ann Hamm worked for Continental Resources as an executive for many years. There was no prenuptial agreement signed before the wedding.
Unless the ruling is appealed by either party, Sue Ann Hamm will receive $322.7 million before the end of the year. After that, Harold Hamm will also be required to make payments amounting to about $7 million each month until the balance of about $650 million is paid off.
Harold Hamm’s stake in Continental Resources is about $13.9 billion. However, before the legal wrangling started, it was worth about $18 billion. It is believed that this settlement would be good for Continental Resources because some shareholders were worried that the CEO would have to sell off a major portion of the company. That could have caused Continental’s shares to fall in value.
Divorce is not easy, but when it involves division of billions of dollars in assets, it requires a highly experienced legal team. Even if your marital assets aren’t worth that much, though, you need a divorce attorney who will work to help ensure that your rights are protected as well as to help you get what you deserve in terms of property and assets.
Source: The Huffington Post, “Harold Hamm, Oil Tycoon, Ordered To Pay Nearly $1 Billion In Record Divorce Settlement” Joshua Schneyer, Reuters, Nov. 10, 2014