Made in Hong Kong: $154m Divorce Settlement Breaks Records


Over the last five years, Pasadena divorce lawyers have seen some of the biggest divorce settlements of all time. In June 2010, Tiger Woods gave his soon-to-be-ex-wife Elin Nordegren a staggering $100 million settlement. Music superstar Paul McCartney settled with his ex, Heather Mills, to the tune of $50 million just three years ago. Actor Kelsey Grammer could wind up paying nearly $70 million to his ex-wife, reality star Camille Grammer. But none of these compares to the latest megabucks divorce settlement that CNN is reporting to be one of the largest in history.

A Hong Kong judge has ordered a business tycoon and real estate mogul to pay a $154 million divorce settlement. High Court Justice John Saunders ruled last Thursday that Samathur Li Kin-kan must pay ex-wife Florence Tsang Chuiwing the massive sum, which represents 20 percent of the couple's assets under Hong Kong's sharing principle. Married in 2000, Li and Tsang separated in 2008. Saunders observed in his ruling that the pair lived "a lifestyle which was best described as just below that of a U.S. billionaire." Saunders ordered that $26 million be paid immediately and that the balance be paid in 90 days.

Although Li is the son of billionaire Samuel Tak Lee and is estimated to be worth $4 billion, Saunders wrote, "The contributions of the husband and wife to the marriage partnership were equal." Tsang herself is a lawyer, and CNN reports that she left the courtroom on Thursday smiling and telling local media she was "delighted" with the ruling.

For some perspective, $154 million translates to roughly $1.2 billion in Hong Kong dollars. The assets included in the settlement are a home in Hong Kong worth $250 million, a London residence valued at $30.5 million and a $2 million budget for Tsang to purchase two vehicles. While impressive, the settlement falls short of the most expensive divorce of all time - the $1.7 billion paid out from media mogul Rupert Murdoch to his wife Anna in June 1999.