Prenuptial agreements have attracted attention in recent weeks because of the much publicized role of prenups in divorcing celebrities. An equally sensational story illustrates the roles that prenuptial agreements can play when marriages go sour.
PROVIDENCE, RI, August 13, 2012 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Prenuptial agreements have attracted attention in recent weeks because of the much publicized prenup and its role in the divorce of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes. An older but equally sensational Rhode Island story illustrates the roles that prenuptial agreements can play when marriages go sour.
Rhode Island Prenuptial Agreement
The saga of a former Jamestown, Rhode Island, couple begins in 1999, when David Swain and his wife, Shelley Tyre, went to the British Virgin Islands for a scuba diving vacation. Tyre drowned while diving near a shipwreck. The drowning was initially thought to be an accident.
However, a 2006 Rhode island wrongful death suit brought by Tyre's parents found Swain responsible for his wife's death and awarded her family $3.5 million. In 2007, the British Virgin Islands extradited Swain and charged him with murder, alleging that he tore his wife's mask off , causing her to drown in 80 feet of water. He was convicted in 2009, but his conviction was overturned in 2011 and he was released from prison in September and returned to Rode Island shortly thereafter.
His release was the result of an appeals court determination that the trial judge's instructions to the jury were biased and constituted misconduct.
A powerful factor in both the civil case and the criminal case was the existence of a prenuptial agreement that prohibited Swain from receiving any of Tyre's fortune if the couple divorced. This, according to prosecutors, gave him the motivation to rid himself of a wife who was preventing him from pursuing another woman. Another motivator, according to prosecutors, was the opportunity to collect on a life insurance policy that would have been void if the couple divorced.
What about the famous Holmes-Cruise prenuptial agreement? Some sources say that Holmes will receive little of the actor's fortune, while others suggest that Holmes could be in line to receive $15 million to $20 million. Some sources say that the agreement was linked to the length of the marriage, with Holmes receiving more if the marriage lasted five years.
Like many prenuptial agreements, the Holmes-Cruise document also governs child support. Most sources agree that Cruise will pay millions in support for his daughter Suri. According to the settlement agreement, the financial , child custody and child support details will not be filed in court unless disagreements over the specifics arise in the future. And, like any child support award, it could be modified. For example, if Cruise's acting career collapsed and he was unable to make the agreed-upon level of payments, either he or Holmes could seek a modification.
For information about how a prenuptial agreement might benefit you, contact an attorney at the Patriot Law Group.
Article Provided By:
Patriot Law Group Rhode Island
Attorney Irwin Pollack
for more information please visit: www.patriotlawgroupri.com
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