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Murdochs settle divorce out of court

Californians may remember the British wiretapping scandal that hit publishing company News Corp. and that damaged the reputation of its leader, Rupert Murdoch. Now the media mogul and his third wife have settled their divorce, the terms for which have not been disclosed to the public. It is not likely that the proceedings will loosen his control of News Corp. and 21st Century Fox, at which he also sits at the helm.

Rupert Murdoch married his third wife 14 years ago in New York and have two daughters together. Their marriage happened only weeks after he finalized his second divorce. During his previous two marriages, Murdoch had two daughters and two sons.

At a hearing on Nov. 20 in Manhattan, the couple told the judge that they want to proceed with the divorce with a settlement that they reached. The Murdochs sat across from each other at the hearing, which did not even last 15 minutes. The judge asked each of them a list of questions regarding the settlement, and they gave one-word answers to signal that the terms had been reviewed with their attorneys and that they intend to uphold the settlement. The couple has 60 days to act on the agreement, which involves property division, and then their divorce will be final.

As the Murdochs have shown here, a divorce does not always have to be an ugly battle, but the emotions of a couple do not always allow for such a calm and collected divorce. The complexity of spousal support and the division of property often make a divorce difficult. Family lawyers may be able to help divorcing spouses reach agreement on these matters.

Source: LA Times, "Rupert Murdoch, Wendi Murdoch announce divorce settlement", Meredith Blake, Meg James, November 20, 2013

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