Bethenny Frankel’s legal battles with her estranged husband Jason Hoppy have gone on far too long. Although The Real Housewives of New York star still has a lot of legal issues to work through, she did score a minor victory in her divorce proceedings this past week. With one part of the negotiations settled, what else does Frankel need to complete before the divorce is finalized?
According to PageSix, a judge ordered Frankel to pay Hoppy some $12,000 a month in support last year. These support payments were supposed to be for temporary maintenance, which is typically what one side pays out until the divorce is settled.
Despite the previous ruling, the reality star was successful in her appeal. A second judge has ordered that Frankel does not have to dish out the $12,000 a month to Hoppy, which is a small victory for Frankel and her attorneys.
The reason why Frankel was able to win the latest ruling is because of the wording in her prenuptial agreement with Hoppy. According to E! Online, Hoppy waived the right to receive support payments when he signed the agreement.
“We find that the broad and expansive language used by the parties in their agreement forecloses the husband from seeking any kind of spousal support, including temporary support,” the official court record stated. “After acknowledging and representing that they are ‘fully capable of being self-supporting,’ the parties agreed to ‘waive any and all claims for spousal support and/or maintenance’ ‘both now and in the future.’ ”
With the monthly payments thrown out, Bethenny Frankel and Jason Hoppy have yet to agree on what to do with their condo in Tribeca, which Frankel purchased as part of a trust. Despite the future of the property still up in the air, Frankel’s attorneys were confident that she will get full ownership in the end.
“We believe that the evidence, including evidence of the husband’s fraudulent behavior and unclean hands, will clearly demonstrate that Bethenny, who is the sole purchaser, is also the sole owner,” Frankel’s lawyer Allan Mayefsky told People. “We are also pleased the court invalidated the award of interim spousal support to Jason based on his waiver in the prenuptial agreement.”
However, Hoppy’s lawyer, Bernard Clair, has since rejected the notion that fraud had anything to do with the case at hand. Instead, Clair pointed out that the fraud charge “was totally inaccurate” and that the true reason behind the decision was “because of improper acknowledgement.”
As far as Hoppy is concerned, the property was bought as a joint venture. Furthermore, Hoppy has made payments for maintenance and renovation, which he believes gives him the rights for half ownership.
The property is worth around $7 million, which is a significant sum for both parties involved. At this point, the judge has not ruled on the ownership of the property and is expected to make a decision at a future date. However, the judge did leave the issue open, which Hoppy took as a good sign.
“Jason is very happy that the court agreed with him that the ownership of the marital apartment is still an open issue and that he will get his day in court,” Hoppy’s lawyers shared. “We believe that the court was in error when they applied an across the board waiver of the right to receive temporary support when the words to extinguish the right did not appear in the prenup.”
Clearly, Frankel’s latest victory is only a small step towards finalizing the divorce. With so much money still on the table, it isn’t clear when the proceedings will finally reach a conclusion.
Tell us! Do you think Bethenny Frankel should have to pay Jason Hoppy spousal support? Let us know in the comments below.
[Image via Bravo]