Hugh Jackman and Deborra-Lee Furness could face ‘great strain’ in divorce

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Hugh Jackman and his wife Deborra-Lee Furness recently announced they were splitting up after nearly three decades together.

The Australian couple, who first exchanged vows in 1996 after meeting the year before, issued a joint statement announcing they were going their separate ways after 27 years.

Hollywood and Marvel star Jackman, 54, and actor and producer Furness, 67, share two children son Oscar Maximilian Jackman and daughter Ava Eliot Jackman.

According to reports, the couple’s marriage was said to have broken down during the coronavirus lockdown with the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes, which have stultified Hollywood, leading to their decision to split.

Despite the couple’s split appearing to be fairly amicable, the divorce process could put the former Hollywood golden couple under pressure.

For all the latest on news, politics, sports, and showbiz from the USA, go to Daily Express US.

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In an interview with Daily Express US, lawyer Nicky Hunter of the firm Stowe Family Law outlined the pressures high net worth individuals like Jackman and Furness could face.

Hunter explained: “Sometimes couples can simply no longer communicate directly with each other and the legal process is the only channel they have to express how they feel about each other.

“Even where there is a high level of agreement and respect on separation this can be placed under great strain by the often-difficult divorce process, but ensuring they are open and transparent in their dealings with each other and in their legal negotiations is the best way to navigate the divorce process and minimise acrimony.”

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Moreover, reflecting on the most acrimonious divorces and the reason they end up in court, Hunter said: “This is usually because there are some fundamental issues that the couple can’t agree on whether that is around the value of the assets, or whether everything has been disclosed that should be, or even whether an asset should be shared at all or kept by one party as ‘non-matrimonial’.”

The lawyer of the UK-based firm said any animosity in a divorce between two wealthy parties wasn’t down to anxiety over financial security but instead it was “often” an “emotional cause”.

Hunter went on to say: “Feelings of hurt, mistrust or betrayal – particularly where one party to the marriage has been blindsided and didn’t see the separation coming whereas their partner may have mentally left the marriage months or years beforehand – are what mainly fuel the most high-conflict divorces from the outset.”

Amid their split Jackman and Furness will be untangling their “complicated financial arrangements” and this could be in relation to multiple properties, businesses and trusts.

Hunter explained how both parties would have to agree with their attorneys how much assets were worth as they began the process of dividing things.

They added: “Fortunately for high net worth individuals the asset base will usually exceed the individual needs of either spouse so the negotiations will focus on how to share the assets of the marriage equally and fairly, and whether assets that either party acquired outside of the marriage can be kept separate.”

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