Bezos to Divorce
Jeff Bezos and his wife, MacKenzie, are getting a divorce after 25 years of marriage, according to a joint statement put out Wednesday on the Amazon CEO’s Twitter account. “After a long period of loving exploration and trial separation, we have decided to divorce and continue our shared lives as friends,” the couple said in the statement.
“We feel incredibly lucky to have found each other and deeply grateful for every one of the years we have been married to each other,” the statement continued. “If we had known we would separate after 25 years, we would do it all again.” Bezos, 54, and MacKenzie, 48, met and got married while working at D.E. Shaw, a New York-based hedge fund, in the early 90s. Shortly after, they packed up and moved across the country to Seattle, where Bezos launched Amazon.
Bezos is now the world’s richest person, with an estimated net worth of $137 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. That means this divorce could end up being very costly. MacKenzie is an author of multiple novels, including Traps and The Testing of Luther Albright.
The state of Washington — where Amazon is based, and the couple have a home — is a community property state, which means all property and debt acquired during a marriage “will be divided equitably by the court if the couple cannot negotiate an agreement,” according to the website of McKinley Irvin, a family law firm in the region.
There is no set formula in Washington law as to how assets should be split, said Jennifer Payseno, a partner with McKinley Irvin in Seattle who handles high-net worth divorce cases for the firm. Wealthy couples often agree how to divide their assets before bringing the matter to a judge, and those details are often filed confidentially with the court. “My guess is they’ve probably have already worked up some sort of framework, and that’s why they’re announcing it now,” Payseno said of the Bezoses. “It’s not going to be made public.”