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Southern oil tycoon awarded majority of business in divorce

Recently, we discussed a high-profile couple in the middle of divorce proceedings for what by any account would be a high asset divorce. This was not just any high-profile couple. Harold Hamm, the owner of a multi-million dollar oil company, Continental Resources, was battling for himself and his company in a bitter divorce from his wife of 26 years. The financial portion of these proceedings have now been decided, and Hamm is likely pleased with the outcome of the high net worth divorce.

As we previously discussed, Hamm did not sign a pre-nuptial agreement before marriage and accumulated his wealth during the span of his marriage. His wife also worked at Continental Resources. The judge ordered that Hamm pay $972 million of a $16.1 billion oil industry fortune to his wife. This allowed him to keep the bulk of his 68 percent stake in Continental Resources.

Hamm's ex-wife was claimed that she had as much right to the company as did her husband. She claimed she was entitled to half his share of Continental Resources as part of the divorce. Obviously, she came away with much less than she had requested, even though $972 million is an amount of money most Texans would find substantial to say the least. The final decree buys Hamm's ex-wife out of company ownership and leaves him to run his business without interference.

An employee claimed that Hamm was, "the head of the ship" at Continental Resources. Other employees' testimony supported that claim. There were other assets awarded to the former Mrs. Hamm in the divorce, but Hamm's lawyer claimed that they were pleased with the outcome as Mrs. Hamm was awarded less than 4 percent of Continental Resources. He noted that most spouses of 26 years are often awarded 25 to 30 percent of the company in question.

Source: The Houston Chronicle, "Divorce case ruling lets billionaire keep most of oil company," Nov. 10, 2014

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