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Art collectors divorce and family law case gets complicated

A pair of art collectors and lobbyists in Massachusetts’ close neighbor, Washington D.C., filed for divorce. When it first came out that the two had separated, they appeared to be going forward with a fairly easy divorce that did not include any hard feelings. However, new details reveal that things are far more complicated than they first appeared.

For one thing, the husband says that his wife was not honest with him. He claims she has been lying to him for 11 years, leading him to believe that they may be able the overcome their differences and stay together. Allegedly, last March, she was able to convince him to agree to provide half of the down payment for a new home that she wanted — a home that was valued in the millions. However, he claims that he knows now that she was already seeing someone else at the time.

On top of that, he also claims that she has been trying to undercut his ability to distribute art by appealing to museums and asking them not to deal with him if he wants to make any donations. He also has accused her in court filings of changing the locks on their apartment in Italy.

The husband is petitioning the court to retain an art collection and properties he owned before their marriage, which includes residences in Australia, Italy, Virginia and Washington. For all assets and property obtained during the marriage, he is agreeable to an equitable distribution. The couple were childless, so fortunately, they will not be fighting over children.

A family law case can change dramatically if both parties are not able to work together to find an easy solution when divorcing. In these complicated cases, it is incredibly important for people to know their rights so they are not taken advantage of in property and asset distribution.

Source: The Washington Post, “Tony Podesta divorce filing: wife Heather Podesta tried to ‘embarrass and harass’” Emily Heil, Apr. 03, 2014

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