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What Giada De Laurentis’ divorce can teach you about prenups

While prenups were once the provenance of celebrity couples and wealthy families, they are something more and more married couples-to-be are including in their wedding plans. This is likely due to increasing media coverage of celebrity divorces and settlements. Most recently, celebrity chef, Giada De Laurentiis, and her now ex-husband, Todd Thompson, were one of those couples who never drew up a prenuptial agreement. Now that they’ve split, De Laurentiis must share the millions in profits she earned off of her cooking-empire evenly with her ex, and on top of that, she’ll have to pay him a hefty sum in child support each month.

What is A Prenup?

A prenuptial agreement or “prenup” is a contract typically drawn up for an engaged couple by an attorney and signed by both parties before the couple is married. The contract usually lists all of the property each person owns, what they expect as an inheritance, and any debts they may have. It then outlines a plan for who can claim rights to those properties if the couple divorces. A prenup offers a couple a financial roadmap if the marriage doesn’t work out and many brides and grooms feel an added level of security walking down the aisle knowing they are protected in the event of divorce. But some couples find prenups unromantic; they might not want to think about ever breaking up with their partner. Others might not think they have anything of value worth protecting later on.

Why Giada De Laurentiis Owes Her Ex So Much

Giada De Laurentiis and her husband Todd Thompson were married for 11 years and did not sign a prenuptial agreement. Through her success on screen, in bookstores, and with numerous products, they amassed a small fortune. Now that they’ve split, her ex-husband is entitled to much of the money she earned while they were married, despite whatever role he played in his wife’s success.

The settlement reached between the couple reveals De Laurentiis and Thompson will split the profits 50/50 from every cookbook she published during the length of their marriage. She will also have to fork over 50 percent of the unpaid advances to various cookbooks she has in the works, but hasn’t received yet. It is estimated those profits alone could be worth more than $5 million.

Thompson will keep the couple’s estimated $3.2 million dollar home in the Pacific Palisades section of Los Angeles, and the couple will split up various bank accounts totaling more than $2 million. While De Laurentiis won’t have to pay any spousal support to her ex-husband, she will have to pay him $9,000 a month in child support while they share joint-custody of their 7-year-old daughter, Jade.

It’s unclear how De Laurentiis feels about being legally ordered to split any money she made during her marriage to her ex-husband – as their divorce seems to be amicable, but it is amazing to think about how much money could have been saved with one legal document. The best way to protect yourself and your property is by talking to an experienced lawyer about your options, and drawing up a prenup that works for you and your partner. While once thought of as unromantic, prenups offer protection and security to all couples, many of whom statistics show us will eventually call it quits.

A good family law or divorce attorney understands the settlement process and is uniquely experienced in drafting prenuptial agreements. Contact the qualified attorneys at Lee, Green, Stewart & Paul Attorneys at Law for advice or help in drafting your prenup.