January 1, 2012



Katy Perry and Russell Brand Divorcing: No Pre-Nup is Top Reason

The Pop and the Comedy was noticeably absent from the last act of the Katy Perry and Russell Brand marriage.  The couple spent Christmas apart, Russell was photographed in London, not wearing his wedding band, while Katy was spotted in Hawaii, also not wearing her wedding ring.  Then on Friday, December 30, 2011 Brand filed for divorce from Perry 14-months after their October 2010 nuptials.  In a classic celebrity move, Brand delivered a copy of his divorce documents to TMZ in Los Angeles.

During the past 14 months, the divorce rumours about Perry and Brand have been building to a crescendo.  Perry was on the cover of October 2011 InStyle and in her interview, she was asked about the divorce rumours.  Katy’s reply was a bit vague for a celebrity who is known for the hit song “I Kissed A Girl And I Liked It.” Brand whose earning power is far less than Perry’s, was interviewed by Ellen DeGeneres on December 2, 2011.  Ellen persistently questions Russell about the rumours that his marriage to Perry is over and they are going to divorce.  Brand used hyperbole theatrics to deny  the divorce rumours and stated “I’m married to Katy perpetually. Until death do us part was the pledge. I am still alive”.  Then 28 days later, Brand files for divorce citing irreconcilable differences in Los Angeles Superior Court.   

What could have caused the Perry-Brand marriage to fail?  Differences in earning power may have contributed to the demise of this marriage.  Celebrity Network reports that in 2011 Katy Perry earned nearly $45 million from album sales, merchandise, touring and endorsements!  According to Forbes, Perry’s net worth is 44 million – much higher than Brand’s estimated net worth at between 6.6 million and 15 million.  In 2011 Brand starred in the box-office flop “Arthur”.  He was also deported from Japan because of his criminal history, according to a tweet from wife Katy Perry and ran into trouble when trying to enter Canada. 

According to the media reports and the divorce documents Perry and Brand didn’t have a pre-nuptial agreement.  Just before they married in India, Brand told the media “I ain’t doing no pre-nup.” Smart move Brand, not so smart move Perry.  In the divorce documents that Brand filed, he ticked the box for ‘Property rights to be determined,’ which also suggests the pair did not have a pre-nuptial agreement.  Both lawyers for Katy Perry and Russell Brand will have to work out an amicable divorce settlement, as the couple appear not to have a pre-nuptial agreement.  They are reported to have at least three properties together in California, New York and London.  Brand may entitled to half or more than half of the assets Katy Perry acquired during the marriage, under California’s community property state law.  Russel Brand is set to make up to 20 million from his divorce from Katy Perry. 

What would have a pre-nuptial agreement have accomplished for Perry and Brand?  It would have saved them time and money on legal fees and litigation costs because they would likely not have to battle over ownership of their assets.  One of the most important provisions in a pre-nuptial agreement is the one dealing with the appreciation of individual assets each possessed prior to entering into the marriage.  Katy Perry should have had a pre-nuptial agreement that clearly set out that her pre-marital property does retain its character during the marriage.  This means that the appreciation of the pre-marital assets, such as Katy’s businesses, during the marriage would have remained Katy’s sole property.     

What can we expect in the next 14 months from this pop star and comedienne?  Katy Perry will likely produce a medley of songs based on the theme of “20 million got away because I had no pre-nup.  I kissed a boy again and I liked it, but not enough to marry without a pre-nup”.  The last laugh will go to Russell when he receives his $20 million divorce settlement from Katy.



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