Numerous media reports in recent days have confirmed that a Hollywood divorce is in the works for one of the entertainment industry’s power couples: actress Kate Winslet and her husband, director Sam Mendes. Winslet and Mendes are both English and the couple reportedly split their time between Britain and the United States. Though a London-based law firm announced the couple’s separation shortly after the Oscars, it remains unclear what jurisdiction they are using for their divorce and, thus, whether or not this is a Los Angeles or Orange County divorce in which California community property laws might come into play.
California divorces are common among celebrities partly because of the entertainment industry’s importance to our state and, in part, because California community property divorce laws make the jurisdiction attractive for wealthy couples in which earning power is concentrated with one half of the couple. As I noted in a December post, former Monty Python star John Cleese and his ex-wife Alyce, though both English, went through a Southern California divorce.
According to Britain’s Daily Telegraph, Winslet and Mendes’ assets include “an eight bedroom manor house” in Britain and a triplex apartment in Manhattan. The newspaper valued their joint fortune at around $50 million. According to ABC News the couple have a son, and are also raising Winslet’s daughter from her first marriage.
Child custody and the division of assets are always among the most difficult and complex issues in any Orange County divorce proceeding. For that reason, they are the topics with which many people – famous or not – most require the assistance of an experienced and compassionate Orange County divorce lawyer. For many people, contacting a Los Angeles or Orange County divorce attorney at an early stage can help ease the path through an otherwise difficult break-up. An early consultation can offer potential clients important insight into what to expect as the California family law and divorce process moves forward.
ABC News: Kate Winslet and Sam Mendes to Divorce
Daily Telegraph: When a marriage made in Hollywood ends in inevitable divorce