Amber Heard Files For Divorce From Actor Johnny Depp After 15 Month Marriage

Family Law Expert Says A Pre-nup Could Save Further Emotional Trauma

27.05.2016

Kate Rawlings, Press Officer | 0114 274 4238

A family law expert says that claims that Johnny Depp’s wife, Amber Heard, has filed for divorce after 15-months of marriage, highlight how having a prenuptial agreement can save the time and emotional trauma of lengthy divorce proceedings.

Media reported that the actress, aged 30, submitted court documents in L.A on Monday, citing irreconcilable differences and seeking spousal support.

Depp, 52, who is reportedly worth $400 million and owns a private island in The Bahamas, is believed to have filed his own legal documents asking the judge to reject his estranged wife's request for maintenance.

According to website TMZ, a source says the couple do not have a pre-nuptial agreement in place.

Depp was previously married to Lori Anne Alison, but they split in 1985. He has a daughter, model Lily-Rose Depp, and son, Jack, with former partner Vanessa Paradis.

Depp and Heard, who co-starred in the 2011 film The Rum Diary, have yet to respond to requests for comment from press.

Irwin Mitchell Private Wealth family law expert, Ros Bever, who features in the The Lawyer’s ‘Hot 100’ of 2016 and Spear’s 500, said the case highlighted how pre-nups can help make the divorce process easier.

Expert Opinion
The wife’s claims after a relatively short marriage of 15 months are going to be limited to need, for a defined period of time. Her ‘needs’ will reflect lifestyle to an extent but will taper off given her age and provide her with a cushion perhaps to get herself back on her feet. A judge may decide to give her a house for example.

The parties could have entered into a pre-nuptial agreement which potentially would provide her with greater financial provision than she might otherwise receive, so, after a short marriage. However, it may be of benefit to him that he did not negotiate one as a judge might think she is entitled to less of what he may have offered in a prenuptial agreement.

That said, having one in place would save the costs and hassle of wrangling now so often they are a sensible idea- to limit exposure, provide certainty and ensure that the issues are limited. The assets were clearly pre-acquired and the court will recognise that.
Ros Bever, Partner