Bill and Melinda Gates have been working on their divorce since 2019, WSJ reports

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CNN 10 May, 2021 - 11:27am 14 views

Is Bill Gates divorced?

Bill and Melinda Gates are getting divorced after 27 years and three children. ... "Over the last 27 years, we have raised three incredible children and built a foundation that works all over the world to enable all people to lead healthy, productive lives." CNETBill Gates and Melinda Gates divorce: Everything to know about the foundation and billions at stake

Where is Melinda Gates?

The family resides in Xanadu 2.0, an earth-sheltered mansion overlooking Lake Washington in Medina, Washington. The family also owns an oceanfront residence in Del Mar, California. In 2021, Gates and her husband announced that they had decided to divorce following 27 years of marriage, and 34 years as a couple. wikipedia.orgBill and Melinda Gates

Who is Ann Winblad?

Winblad Has an Extensive Background in Business In 1989, she co-founded Hummer Winblad Venture Partners, which was the first venture firm focused entirely on software, the company's website states. Over the years, the firm has launched over 160 companies, according to her company bio. PEOPLE.comWho Is Ann Winblad? What to Know About Bill Gates’ Ex Who Called Melinda a 'Good Match for Him'

Melinda Gates had concerns over Bill's possible ties to Jeffrey Epstein: report

Fox Business 10 May, 2021 - 05:03pm

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Licensed marriage and family therapist Dr. Karen Ruskin weighs in on Bill and Melinda Gates' pending divorce.

Melinda Gates was supposedly concerned with her soon-to-be ex-husband Bill Gates’ relationship with disgraced financier and convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein in the years leading up to their high-profile divorce last week, according to a Sunday report. 

People familiar with the couple’s divorce proceedings and a former employee of their charity, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, told The Wall Street Journal that Melinda’s concerns about Epstein went back as far as 2013. 

Those sources said Melinda told her husband she was uncomfortable with Epstein after the couple met him that year, but Bill reportedly continued a relationship with Epstein, despite her concerns. 

Bill previously played down his relationship with Epstein, telling The Journal in 2019 that he had met him but "didn’t have any business relationship or friendship with him." 

Bridgitt Arnold, a spokesperson for Bill Gates, said that year that Gates had met Epstein on multiple occasions to discuss philanthropy. 

"Bill Gates regrets ever meeting with Epstein and recognizes it was an error in judgment to do so," Arnold said at the time. 

Epstein committed suicide in a lower Manhattan jail cell in August 2019 while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges. 

Fox News has reached out to representatives who could speak on behalf of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation but did not hear back before publication. 

The Journal’s Sunday report notes that the Gates’ divorce, which the couple announced last week, had been in the works since at least 2019, according to documents reviewed by the outlet. 

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, with an endowment of nearly $50 billion, donates about $5 billion annually to causes around the world. Last year, it donated $1 billion to combat COVID-19 through the administering of vaccines.

In a statement after the Gateses' announced their divorce on Twitter, the foundation said the two would remain co-chairs and trustees and that no changes in the organization were planned.

"They will continue to work together to shape and approve foundation strategies, advocate for the foundation's issues and set the organization's overall direction," the foundation said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.  

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Report: Gates Split Began in 2019 Over Bill's Epstein Ties

Newser 10 May, 2021 - 05:03pm

(Newser) – When Bill and Melinda Gates announced last week they were ending their marriage, they didn't offer a reason for the split. But per a new report from the Wall Street Journal, Melinda Gates had met with attorneys from multiple law firms and started ending their "irretrievably broken" union in 2019, with sources noting the move was partly due to her husband's relationship with Jeffrey Epstein. A slew of calls between Melinda Gates and legal advisers took place in October of that year, after the New York Times published a story on her husband's dealings with Epstein. The latter had already been convicted of sex crimes by the time he first started meeting with Bill Gates in 2011, and in September 2013, both Bill and Melinda Gates got together with Epstein in New York City, per the Daily Beast. Sources tell the outlet that meeting was "a turning point," with Melinda Gates relaying to her husband how uncomfortable Epstein made her and that she didn't want any part of being around him.

One source notes it wasn't surprising Melinda Gates was so put off by Epstein, as he was an "obnoxious guy" who made many people feel ill at ease, even without the sexual crimes hanging over his head. Despite her reservations, however, Bill and other Gates Foundation staff continued to meet with Epstein, per a WSJ source. When asked by the paper to comment, a rep for Bill Gates said the tech mogul stands by his 2019 remarks to the WSJ, in which he said of Epstein: "I met him. I didn't have any business relationship or friendship with him." Meanwhile, the New York Times notes that even though the couple's personal split came as a shock to the public, the two had already been living in "separate worlds" when it came to their philanthropic efforts, with both concentrating on their own interests via "independent channels." "Institutionally, the foundation had already absorbed the separation," says an Urban Institute philanthropy expert. (Read more Bill and Melinda Gates stories.)

Melinda Gates now owns roughly $3 billion across these 3 stocks as part of her divorce proceedings

MSN Money 10 May, 2021 - 05:03pm

The divorce of Bill and Melinda Gates announced earlier this week has already led to the division of assets between the couple that's worth more than $140 billion.

According to data from Bloomberg, regulatory filings made on May 3, the same date the couple announced their divorce, Melinda Gates has already received roughly $3 billion worth of stock from Cascade Investment, a holding company founded by Bill Gates.

More asset transfers are likely over the coming weeks and months, as the separation is expected to generate a wealth transfer not seen since the divorce of Jeff Bezos and Mackenzie Scott in 2019, which led to a $38 billion settlement.

Other potential stocks that could be transferred from Cascade Investment to Melinda Gates include Deere & Co., Republic Services, and Ecolab, which are heavily owned positions at the holding company.

These are the three stocks worth a combined $5 billion that have been transferred to Melinda Gates over the past week.

Ticker: AN

Shares owned: 2.9 million

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Gates marriage 'irretrievably broken' since 2019 over Epstein link: Report

Hindustan Times 10 May, 2021 - 03:56am

Melinda French Gates began working with divorce lawyers well over a year before her split with Bill Gates was announced last week, partly over concerns about her husband’s dealings with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The 56-year-old spoke with attorneys from several firms as early as October 2019, saying the marriage was “irretrievably broken,” the Journal reported Sunday, citing documents and people familiar with the matter. Her unease about her ex-husband’s ties to Epstein dates back to at least 2013, the paper said.

The New York Times reported in October 2019 that the billionaire had met with Epstein several times, and once stayed late at his New York townhouse. A spokeswoman for Microsoft Corp. co-founder said at the time that the meetings had centered on philanthropy. Epstein had died in jail two months prior while awaiting trial on federal charges related to sex trafficking.

The divorce was negotiated during the pandemic, involving legal teams working with a mediator to divide their fortune, which the Bloomberg Billionaires Index pegs at $145 billion.

The couple said that they plan on remaining co-chairs and trustees of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Billionaire Warren Buffett serves as the foundation’s third trustee. All three have vowed to give away the vast majority of their wealth.

In the days after the split was announced, a holding company that Bill Gates created transferred equity stakes in four different companies, worth more than $2 billion in aggregate, to Melinda French Gates, Bloomberg News has reported. The bulk of it is from about 14.1 million shares in Canadian National Railway Co.

Days before he died in a New York jail, Epstein named a little-known biotech venture capitalist named Boris Nikolic as backup executor of his will. Nikolic had worked as a science adviser to Bill Gates and more recently funded more than a dozen firms in gene editing and other health technologies.

In an emailed statement at the time, Nikolic told Bloomberg that Epstein had not consulted him about the will and that he had no intention to fulfill the duties.

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Bill and Melinda Gates divorce because of 'combo of things'

Daily Mail 08 May, 2021 - 09:08pm

By Holden Walter-warner For Dailymail.com

More light is being shed on the timing and reason for Bill and Melinda Gates' seismic decision to divorce.

The two were married for 27 years prior to their announcement this week, which was a shock to many regarding one of the world's richest couples, with a fortune of $130billion.

There doesn't appear to be a specific incident that triggered their split, which a source told PEOPLE was the result of a 'combo of things.'

The timing of the divorce, meanwhile, seems to relate to their youngest daughter, Phoebe, turning 18 years old back in September.

 'It's absolutely because their youngest child is graduating from high school, and the idea was that they stayed together through that,' the source said.

More details are emerging about the split between Melinda and Bill Gates

There does not appear to be a specific incident that broke up the 27-year marriage

'They limped through until their kids were out of school like a lot of people.'

Their other two children are older, with daughter Jennifer 25 years old and son Rory 21 years old.

Jennifer has described the 'challenging stretch of time' the family are facing due to their parents' divorce.

'I won't personally comment further on anything around the separation, but please know that your kind words and support mean the world to me,' she wrote on Instagram.

The timing of their divorce, meanwhile, appears to relate to their daughter turning 18

The two were married in Hawaii back in 1994, several years after they met

Jennifer is engaged to Egyptian show jumper Nayel Nassar. 

As for whether or not Melinda the divorce is going to get more contentious in the public, the source says not to count on it.

'Nobody is going to want to invite more scrutiny because it'll hurt their credibility,' the source said. 'I don't think they're so angry that anybody wants to take each other down, like you sometimes see. [Melinda is] not incentivized for that.' 

Melinda pulled the trigger on the divorce on Monday, revealing in the process that a separation agreement was in place.

She said the marriage was 'irretrievably broken,' but was not looking for spousal support or child support. 

Melinda Gates is not seeking spousal support or child support in the divorce

The two still plan on working together at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and are trying to avoid public acrimony. They hope their work will net them one of the world's most prominent prizes.

'They were really interested in trying to win a Nobel Prize,' says the PEOPLE source. 'So one thing that was part of this is, if it gets worse, then it ends that. It seems as if that was on the agenda, and that's for both of them.' 

In a joint statement posted to their Twitter accounts on Monday, the former couple said their work with their foundation will continue but their marriage will not.

'After a great deal of thought and a lot of work, we have made the decision to end our marriage. 

'Over the last 27 years, we have raised three incredible children and built a foundation that works all over the world to enable all people to lead healthy, productive lives. 

'We continue to share a belief in that mission and will continue to work together at the foundation, but we no longer believe we can grow together as a couple in this next phase of our lives. We ask for space and privacy for our family as we begin to navigate this new life.'

Bill, 65, and Melinda, 56, met in 1987 while she was working at Microsoft, the company he founded. That same year, Bill became the world's youngest billionaire at the age of 31. 

The couple married in Hawaii in 1994 and would go on to establish the world's largest charitable foundation, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, in 2000. 

Since then, it has contributed more than $50billion to causes including eradicating polio and malaria. The foundation has also been a major investor in coronavirus treatments.  

The reason behind their split remains a mystery but Melinda has previously suggested her husband struggled balancing work and family.   

In their divorce filing, Bill and Melinda Gates make it clear that they have no prenuptial agreement - but the papers make repeated reference to a 'separation contract' which will divide up their estate.

A separation contract, or separation agreement, is a legally binding document drawn up by divorcing couples in advance of their split in which they agree how to split their lives - including child custody and access, debts and property.

It is governed by contract law, meaning that either party can sue the other for breach of contract if the agreement is broken.

Signing a separation contract allows a couple to divide their assets by mutual agreement, rather than having to go to court. 

For the average couple, this means saving money in lawyers' fees. For Bill and Melinda Gates, it avoids a lengthy, public process during which details about their private lives an assets may have been revealed. 

However, a separation agreement is not necessarily final and a judge may overrule it if they feel the contract is unfair to the children involved, unfair to one of the partners, or that one partner has not fully disclosed their assets or earnings to be divvied up.

Source: LawDepot 

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