Frank and Jamie McCourt back in divorce court after Dodgers sale

It may be no surprise to Arizona readers that the seemingly never-ending divorce between former MLB owner Frank McCourt and his ex-wife, Jamie McCourt, is headed back to court. The west coast divorce was all signed, sealed and delivered. Jamie is now alleging fraud or mistake and wants the divorce proceedings reopened. She claims that the property division was ultimately unfair because Frank sold his share in the Dodgers for far more than the estimated value of the team that was used during divorce negotiations.

According to Jamie, her ex-husband represented during their divorce negotiations that the Dodgers’ franchise was worth less than $300 million. She claims that she agreed to a $131 million payout to settle their two year long litigation, based on the valuation figures represented by Frank. Once the divorce was final, McCourt is said to have later sold the MLB team for a reported $2.15 billion, from which McCourt purportedly netted about $1.7 billion.

In late September, Jamie filed papers in a California court seeking to set aside the settlement. She claims that Frank fraudulently misrepresented the value of the team. Alternatively, she argues that a mutual mistake was made from which she should be entitled to relief.

Arizona readers may recall that the rancorous divorce was settled in Oct. 2011 while the sale of the team took place in March 2012. Apparently, attempts to adjust the divorce settlement figure were rebuffed by Frank. It will now be up to the California court to determine if fraud or mutual mistake occurred in a manner to justify reopening the litigation. While it remains to be seen what the court will decide, the burden of proof will understandably be on Jamie to convince the court the settlement was unfair to such an extent that further relief is warranted.

Source: BloombergBusinessweek, “Jamie McCourt Calls Divorce Payout Unfair After Dodgers Sale,” Edvard Pettersson, Sept. 27, 2012

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