Bill Gates and Melinda French Gates, co-founders of one of the world's largest private charity foundations, finalized divorced on Monday. After 27 years of marriage, the pair filed for divorce on May 3 but promised to continue their charity work together.
At the time, Gates stated that they had agreed on how to divide their marital assets. On Monday, a court gave his approval to their divorce.
Melinda Gates urges not to change the surname
According to court documents obtained by ET, neither party will pay the other any spousal support as part of the divorce arrangement. There are no more specifics about their divorce agreement accessible to the public, and Melinda does not want to change her name.
The Microsoft founder's fortune is presently valued at $152 billion, and it is unclear how the fortune will be affected or shared between the former wives at this time.
On May 4, the billionaire Microsoft founder, 65, and his wife, 56, surprised the world when they announced their divorce on Twitter. They announced on Twitter that they "no longer think to develop together as a couple," but they will continue to work together at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
A judge in the Superior Court of the State of Washington for King County approved the divorce after three months. There was no signed agreement so the couple split their assets based on an undisclosed separation contract.
The settlement between Bill Gates and his ex-wife may leave Melinda with more than $65 billion. Gates' net worth is believed to be more than $130 billion. Melinda has also stated that she intends to maintain her surname Gates. Bill has been accused of "womanizing" and sexually harassing employees at Microsoft in the aftermath of his divorce announcement, as per Daily Mail.
After Melinda read a letter sent by a Microsoft employee in 2019 revealing her tycoon husband's inappropriate sexual connection with a female Microsoft colleague, their relationship reportedly began to fall apart. Gates was ousted from Microsoft's board of directors two decades after the affair in 2000 when the company examined his past personal connection with an employee, which "ended peacefully."
Meanwhile, Melinda did not ask for spousal support from her now-ex-husband; but she was handed $2 billion in stocks the day she filed the divorce papers. Her estranged spouse even added 25 million Mexican Coca-Cola shares to her portfolio the next day.
Melinda did not want a name change. Since their three children are all legally adults, child support does not apply. On the other hand, the Gates children have long been aware that they would not inherit their parents' fortune.
At a Technology, Entertainment, Design (TED) Conference in Canada in 2014, Bill Gates revealed that most of his money would go to his family foundation. Other stories involving Bill Gates' litany of relationships and sexual harassment accusations in the workplace have surfaced in the days since their divorce was announced.
Bill and Melinda Gates divorce agreement
The couple's decision to divorce was based on a separate contract that specified how they would divide their assets, debts, and court expenses. However, the document was never made public since it was not submitted in the court proceedings. During the legal process, additional aspects of their divorce were exposed.
Because all three children are adults, the divorcees will not be responsible for any child support payments. Furthermore, the ex-partners will continue to work together on their charity, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Last month, however, the foundation stated that if the couple cannot get along, it reserves the right to dismiss Melinda French Gates from the organization. Per News.com, Melinda has two years to try working there; if she doesn't like it, she may resign, and Bill Gates will have to buy her out.