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California residents may have been waiting with baited breath to hear if the rumors swirling the Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher split were going to become fact. Although many tips and gossip leaks have been reporting a variety of different stories, it seems that a divorce for this couple of six years is in the works. With both of these celebrities being considered among Hollywood's A-listers, speculations have already started over just how expensive this divorce will be.

Assets reported between the two stars are estimated in the $290 million dollar mark. How the assets and incomes will be divided from this point will largely depend on whether or not a prenuptial agreement exists, and if the prenuptial agreement is maintained in court. Some judges may not consider it, and California law stipulates that with no prenuptial agreement in place, assets are divided at the 50-50 ratio.

When infidelity enters the picture, things get more complicated and in some cases the spouse that is cheated on may see a higher settlement. A Hollywood divorce lawyer not connected to the case suggests that an affair alleged on Ashton's part may not lead to a higher settlement for Demi if there is a prenuptial agreement. On the other hand, his new income with his new job on the sitcom Two and a Half Men will be up for discussion at the settlement table if there is no prenup agreement.

But things get even stickier when you add previous marriages in the mix. Demi Moore may not even care about accessing the income from Two and a Half Men as she is reportedly already worth more than Ashton by about 10 million. In addition, she received a 90 million settlement from her divorce with another A-lister, Bruce Willis.

While not every divorce will appear as complicated as this from the get go, it does not need to be a high asset divorce for asset division and settlement issues to be complex. Many Americans today are now on their second marriages, and family matters are simply more involved than they were in days past. Cases like this however do illustrate the need and benefit from having a family law attorney retained as early as possible in the process, to ensure the best interest of the parties is maintained so that everyone can move on with their lives as soon as possible.

Source: The Times of India, "Demi-Ashton face $290 million court battle," Times Of India News Staff, Nov 19, 2011

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