Lobbyists Tony and Heather Podesta were headed for what looked like a contentious divorce, but the couple announced on June 9 that they had agreed on a settlement. The story of their case may interest New Jersey couples who might also be involved in a high-asset divorce. The couple owned an impressive array of assets, including properties in the U.S. and abroad, and they were known for their large art collection. The two released statements pledging friendship and mutual respect but did not go into detail about the terms of the divorce agreement.
The Podestas got married in 2003. Tony Podesta was already an established and powerful lobbyist while Heather, although also in the business, saw a sharp rise in her career after marrying. The Podestas were well known in the nation’s capital for throwing expensive parties and attending fundraisers. The couple purchased homes in Italy and Australia in addition to properties in the U.S.
The former couple’s attitude toward each other is quite different from when Tony Podesta filed for divorce in April 2013. He accused his wife of misleading him about getting back together. He also claimed full credit for her successful lobbying career. The Podestas were fighting over their international homes and art collection, with Heather Podesta especially interested in getting their D.C. home.
Every divorce comes with unique challenges but figuring out a fair way to divide assets can be more difficult when couples have a diverse financial portfolio. A common point of contention is what assets should be divided. Assets people bring to a marriage or receive as gifts while married are usually not labeled marital property, and are therefore not required to be split up. Consulting an attorney could help people protect the assets that solely belong to them as well as negotiate an equitable settlement.
Source: The Washington Post, “Heather and Tony Podesta reach divorce settlement“, Emily Heil, June 09, 2014