The financial issues of Johnny Depp’s divorce against Amber Heard will not be finalized before Christmas. According to reports, Depp’s lawyers have demanded that Heard pay him $100,000 in fees and costs.
According to Court papers filed by Depp’s lawyers, Heard “continues to needlessly litigate a case which has been settled, all while parading in front of the media in a desperate attempt to extend her 15 minutes of fame.”
Heard’s lawyer, Mr. Pierce O’Donnell, called the request “laughable”.
O’Donnell said: “We look forward to prevailing in Court- and to getting sick children and women in need the money that Mr. Depp is denying them.”
The latest development in the case came after the divorce was settled in August 2016. Then, Depp agreed to a $7 million settlement. Heard requested the money to be donated to the American Civil Liberties Union and Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles. Last week, Heard’s lawyers filed a “Request For Order” with the LA Superior Court to enforce the settlement and expedite the payment. In doing so, they claimed that Depp did not comply with the Court’s timelines involving division of matrimonial assets.
See: Bobbie Whiteman, “’It’s laughable!’ Amber Heard’s lawyer hits out after Johnny Depp demands $100,000 from his ex as nasty divorce continues”, Mail Online, 22 December 2016
Can I get my spouse to pay for my legal fees?
As a Singapore divorce lawyer who had fought many divorce and family related- matters in the Family Justice Courts and High Court, I frequently have clients asked me if they are able to get their spouse to pay for their legal fees.
The short answer is “maybe”.
There are generally 3 categories of divorce cases in Singapore.
- Uncontested cases (also known as simplified divorce): husband and wife agree on all terms and the process is largely administrative. The issue on payment of legal fees would usually have been agreed by both parties prior to the filing of the divorce.
- Mediated cases: husband and wife reach a settlement at the mediation centre after extensive negotiations. The issue on legal fees will also be discussed at mediation.
- Litigation cases: husband and wife are not able to reach a settlement at the mediation centre despite having extensive negotiations. The case would have to be decided by a Judge of the Family Justice Courts. The Judge, in making his/ her decision, would also decide if one party were to pay for costs. Costs may be awarded if:
- Your spouse caused unnecessary delays to the divorce proceedings.
- Your spouse acted unreasonably in the divorce proceedings.
- You win the case.
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