BILL and Melinda Gates’ divorce documents reveal their marriage was “irretrievably broken” and the billionaire exes have no prenup. The Sun revealed in the legal papers obtained that Melinda, 56, filed for the divorce, and said that the “parties are separated”.
“The marriage is irretrievably broken,” the documents say. “We ask the court to dissolve our marriage and find that our marital community ended on the date stated in our separation contract.” According to the Sun, there also appears to be no prenuptial agreement, as the filing states that the only written agreement that relates to the divorce is the aforementioned separation contract. Melinda does not appear to be asking for any spousal support from the 65-year-old Microsoft co-founder, who’s said to be worth about $124billion, The Sun reports.
The ex-couple announced that they were getting divorced in a statement on Monday. Gates said they decided to end the marriage after a “great deal of thought and a lot of work” – two years after his wife admitted that marital life was “really hard.”
He noted that they had raised “three incredible children” and worked to help people all over the world with their philanthropy work. “We continue to share a belief in that mission and will continue our work at the foundation, but we no longer believe we can grow together as a couple in this next phase of our lives,” Gates wrote in the statement posted to Twitter. “We ask for space and privacy for our family as we begin to navigate this new life,” he concluded. Melinda tweeted an identical statement to her account.
The couple’s eldest daughter, Jennifer, 25, commented on the divorce in an Instagram story shortly after her parents went public. “I’m still learning how to best support my own process and emotions as well as my family members at this time and am grateful for the space to do so,” she wrote.
“I won’t personally comment further on anything around the separation, but please know that your kind words and support mean the world to me.” Jennifer is the eldest of the Gates’ three children. Her brother, Rory, is 22 and her sister, Phoebe, is 19.
Melinda previously admitted to The Sunday Times that being with Bill was often “incredibly hard” when they marked 25 years of marriage. “When he was having trouble making the decision about getting married, he was incredibly clear that it was not about me, it was about ‘Can I get the balance right between work and family life?”’ she said in 2019.
The pair met when Melinda joined Microsoft in 1987 at a business dinner in New York City, and after a year of dating, it was reported that Bill had to make a pros and cons list about getting married. “You know, we cared a lot for each other and there were only two possibilities: either, we were going to break up or we were going to get married,” Bill said in the Netflix three-episode series “Inside Bill’s Brain”.
“I took the idea of marriage very seriously,” Bill said. The couple eventually tied the knot in Lanai, Hawaii, when Gates was 38 and Melinda was 29, reported the Associated Press.
Tech mogul Gates, who has become a leading figure in the fight against Covid-19, was the richest man in the world until Amazon’s Jeff Bezos knocked him off his perch in 2017. Although he’s given $5billion to charity since 1994, Gates is earning money at a faster rate than he’s donated it, according to reports.