What If Johnny Depp and Amber Heard Had a Premarital Agreement?

Oh, the gritty details we’re learning from the latest court battle between Johnny Depp and Amber Heard. This unfortunate airing of dirty laundry may have been avoided with a prenup. Should you think about getting one yourself?

Johnny Depp and Amber Heard attend The 58th GRAMMY Awards at Staples Center on Feb. 15, 2016, in Los Angeles.
Johnny Depp and Amber Heard attend The 58th GRAMMY Awards at Staples Center on Feb. 15, 2016, in Los Angeles.
(Image credit: By John Shearer/WireImage via Getty Images)

As we observe the very public $50 million defamation lawsuit Johnny Depp brought against his ex-wife, Amber Heard, we realize that this all seems to be related to or carried over from on their very public divorce proceedings. The couple were married – without the benefit of a prenuptial agreement – in 2015 after meeting in 2011 on the film set for The Rum Diary. They split up when Heard filed for divorce in 2016. That divorce was final in 2017, but it certainly didn’t end their legal battles.

At the time of their divorce, Depp’s net worth was estimated to be more than 18 times larger than Heard’s. She initially sought $50,000 per month in spousal support to maintain her marital lifestyle. The property settlement provided for Depp to pay her $7 million. Heard declared that she would donate the divorce proceeds to charity. So, Depp paid a portion of the divorce settlement to the Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles and to the ACLU. Heard’s attorney then demanded that Depp donate $14 million to charity to reflect a net payment of $7 million for Depp after the projected $7 million in tax savings from the charitable contribution deduction.

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John M. Goralka
Founder, The Goralka Law Firm

Founder of The Goralka Law Firm, John M. Goralka assists business owners, real estate owners and successful families to achieve their enlightened dreams by better protecting their assets, minimizing income and estate tax and resolving messes and transitions to preserve, protect and enhance their legacy. John is one of few California attorneys certified as a Specialist by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization in both Taxation and Estate Planning, Trust and Probate.