The couple was married for 27 years and decided a few months ago to end their marriage. In a joint statement the couple said, “we no longer believe we can grow together as a couple in this next phase of our lives.” Melinda does not plan to change her name from Gates, according to court documents, as reported by CNN.
Not too much has been publicly announced about the details of their split other than the news that neither person will pay spousal support, according to court documents as reported by CNN. It is also unknown what will happen to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which is worth just under $50 billion in assets, according to The Verge.
Reportedly, the foundation will have the divorced on a two-year trial period to see if the two can work together civilly as co-chairs. If it does not work out, Melinda will step down from the foundation, according to The Verge.
“In such a case, Melinda would receive personal resources from Bill for her philanthropic work,” said the foundation’s CEO Mark Suzman last month. “These resources would be completely separate from the foundation’s endowment, which would not be affected.”
The couple first met at Microsoft in 1987 and dated for seven years before they eventually married in 1994. The former couple raised two daughters and a son. Each of the Gates‘ kids will inherit about $10 million of their parents’ fortune, the rest will go to charitable causes, according to Business Insider.