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Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos' divorce settlement approved in court

Amazon is a household name in Texas and across the country. Many have even heard that the company's CEO, Jeff Bezos, is going through a landmark high-asset divorce. On July 5, the divorce was finalized by a judge, ending Jeff's 25-year marriage with his former wife MacKenzie. According to the divorce settlement, MacKenzie Bezos will receive $38.3 billion in Amazon stock, marking 4% of its outstanding shares. Amazon said in April that 19.7 million shares in the company would be registered in her name after the divorce was approved in family court.

The couple made a joint statement on Twitter in January 2019 to announce their intention to divorce. Some were concerned that Jeff Bezos might liquidate a large position in the company or that he might lose his significant voting share in the company. Nevertheless, he remains the world's wealthiest person after the divorce. He is keeping $114.8 billion in Amazon stock, marking 12% of the total shares. MacKenzie reportedly has agreed to give her ex-husband voting control of her shares. She has also vowed to donate half her wealth to charity, joining the "Giving Pledge" launched by billionaires Warren Buffet and Bill Gates.

Divorce and separate assets

The division of financial accounts can be one of the most contentious issues in a divorce. Texas residents who maintain accounts separate from those of their spouse should be aware that having assets in their name only will not protect those assets from being divided in a divorce.

For people who reside in community property states, anything that is obtained during a marriage is considered property that belongs to both spouses. This includes any funds that are in separate bank accounts.

The pitfalls of representing yourself pro se in a divorce

Financial issues can quickly lead a couple from a happy union to a potential divorce scenario. Unfortunately, divorce itself can add to that financial strain, as ending a marriage is often more expensive than starting one.

While weddings can cost an arm and a leg, you can get married at a courthouse for little more than the cost of a marriage license and perhaps a tip for the person who performs it. Divorce, on the other hand, is not something you want to necessarily do yourself. Inevitably, there are those who will attempt to file divorce on their own behalf. While doing so may feel like a money-saving move, filing divorce pro se can be a major mistake.

Deciding child custody

Parents in Texas who are in disputes regarding child custody should know that there are multiple factors the family courts will examine to render a decision. It is also important that parents are aware that the courts have the responsibility of determining what is in the best interest of the children.

How old the children are is one factor that is considered when determining child custody arrangements. The courts want to ensure that the children will have some consistency. The older the children are, the more willing the courts may be to entertaining different arrangements.

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