So what is the latest regarding Jon & Kate?
So far, we know:
- Jon & Kate agreed to file in Montgomery County (as opposed to Berks County where they live) to maintain confidentiality and have their records sealed;
- Kate filed the divorce complaint;
- Kate is only requesting a divorce based on No-Fault Grounds (and thus taking Jon’s alleged adultery out of the discussion);
- Kate is requesting the court to divide the parties’ marital property if they cannot reach an agreement;
- Kate is requesting the court approve a settlement agreement between the parties (if they are able to reach one) regarding the division of marital property;
- Kate is not asking the court to decide custody of the children;
- Kate is not asking the court to award her spousal support;
- Kate is not asking the court to order Jon pay any child support;
- Jon’s attorney accepted service (on June 22nd, 2009) and did not raise any additional claims regarding custody or support of the children.
So far, what we can infer:
- Jon & Kate have worked out a custody arrangement (the kids live in the house; Jon has one week, Mom has one week?);
- Jon & Kate have reached an agreement on how to pay for any expenses they have for the children; Jon & Kate make enough money that neither needs any support from the other;
Jon and Kate’s attorney are now in the process of accounting for the “marital estate” – the property that the parties acquired during marriage and which will now be divided between them. They are gathering account statements, getting appraisals done on various properties, determining what property (if any) is not marital, determining what marital debt there may be, and generating a comprehensive accounting which the parties will then use to determine how to split it all up. If the parties cannot agree regarding the value of certain property, or whether certain property is marital or non-marital, then the court will ultimately make those decisions. I suspect any such disagreement may be decided via confidential mediation or binding arbitration and thus avoid any possible disclosure or leaks to the public.
The high profile of Jon and Kate provides the public with a unique opportunity to explore issues that arise in contested divorce cases. Through this ongoing series I will offer comments and analysis of the proceedings and provide insight on how developments in Jon and Kate’s case may occur in other divorces. I am a Pennsylvania divorce attorney who is not involved in the Jon and Kate matter and the comments I present in this blog series are not case specific but rather intended to provide the public with helpful information on Pennsylvania divorce law.