Jerry Hall in line for £10m a year under ‘generous’ Rupert Murdoch divorce settlement
Jerry Hall could receive up to £10m a year and share in £250m worth of properties as part of a “generous” divorce settlement from Rupert Murdoch.
The six-year marriage between the billionaire media mogul, 91 and the 65 year-old supermodel is over, two people with knowledge of the decision told the New York Times.
Rumours that the couple were no longer together spread after Ms Hall failed to accompany her husband at Mr Murdoch’s Summer party on Monday night at the Serpentine Gallery, attended by luminaries including the Prime Minister.
Representatives for the couple declined to comment on the reports.
It is set to be a fourth divorce and the shortest marriage yet for Mr Murdoch, whose wealth is estimated by Forbes at £14bn.
However the split is not expected to affect the succession plan for the Murdoch media empire, which includes News UK – publishers of The Times, The Sunday Times and The Sun – as well as the Wall Street Journal, the New York Post, book publisher HarperCollins and Fox News in America.
Eldest son Lachlan Murdoch is the heir apparent after returning to the family business as co-chairman of News Corp.
Mr Murdoch’s six children are beneficiaries of the family trust, boosted by $12bn in Disney shares acquired under the 2019 deal which sold the Fox studios and other assets to the entertainment giant.
The divorce could signal that Mr Murdoch wishes to take a closer interest in his business operations.
When the unlikely couple first met in Australia in 2015, friends described Mr Murdoch as “some dotty old man who’s in love with a teenager.”
Following their 2016 wedding at St Bride’s church in London’s Fleet Street, attended by guests including Bob Geldof, Tracey Emin and Michael Caine, Mr Murdoch appeared content with the “balance” Ms Hall brought into his life, allowing trusted son Lachlan time to establish himself as the future News Corp boss.
However Mr Murdoch has become personally invested in fresh challenges, such as building an audience for the talkTV channel which has struggled to attract viewers after launching with high ambitions.
Executives at Fox News and the Wall Street Journal may find the boss scrutinising their editorial content with renewed vigour.
Mr Murdoch and Ms Hall are believed to have signed a pre-nup agreement.
Mark Stephens, the leading media lawyer, told i: “Jerry will be looked after handsomely under the agreement. It isn’t designed to make her wealthy but allow her to live an independent life.”
“She will get a generous stipend to live – from £5m to £10m a year for the rest of her life. That covers staff and security needs.”
“Jerry will get a couple of homes, perhaps Chipping Norton and an apartment in New York, as well as use of the PJs – private jets.”
Ms Hall will have a “shared use” claim on properties the couple have acquired since marrying. They include an £11.25 million Georgian property near Henley-on-Thames in Oxfordshire in 2019.
A year later, Great Tew Manor – a “doer-upper” in the Cotswolds joined the property portfolio. It was earmarked for a £30m restoration project.
Ms Hall may be attracted to the 340,000-acre cattle ranch near Yellowstone Park in the US, bought last December for £228 million.
The pre-nup was designed to give Ms Hall security should she outlive her husband. But the deal is dependent on her turning down offers to reveal all about the private Murdoch and their marriage.
Kelvin MacKenzie, the former Sun editor, tweeted: “I know you’ve been worried about it, but having spoken to Rupert Murdoch’s people they assure me his £14billion fortune won’t be wiped out by his divorce from Jerry Hall as he puts a little by every year for such events.”
In March, the billionaire moved to realise some assets by listing two of his luxury New York City condos for sale for $78 million.
Ms Hall had to fight for her future financial security after her 22-year relationship with Mick Jagger, with whom she had four children, ended in an annulment.
The Rolling Stones singer argued that their 1990 Bali beach wedding ceremony did not constitute a valid marriage.
After a legal battle, Ms Hall agreed an £18m settlement and shared ownership of their £13m Richmond home. A clause required either party to move out if they remarried.
Friends said they were surprised at the speed with which the Murdoch marriage has apprently unravelled.
There had been minor reported tensions over Ms Hall’s insistence on smoking.
A plan to revive Ms Hall’s role as Mrs Robinson in a stage production of The Graduate, which includes a nude scene, was said to have been dropped at her husband’s behest.
In terms of nuptials, Mr Murdoch has surpassed his thrice-married screen counterpart Logan Roy, the central character in Succession.
Mr Murdoch was introduced to Ms Hall following the end of his 14-year marriage to Chinese-born businesswoman Wendi Deng.
They divorced in 2014 and have two children, Grace and Chloe. Mr Murdoch was embarrassed by reports that Ms Deng enjoyed a close friendship with Tony Blair.
Lachlan, James, who quit the family business in protest over Fox News’s right-wing content and TV entrepreneur Elisabeth, are scions of their father’s 32-year marriage to Anna Torv.
Mr Murdoch has a daughter, Prudence, from his first marriage to Patricia Booker, a flight attendant from Melbourne. They wed in 1956 in Australia and divorced 11-years later.
Six years before meeting Mr Murdoch, Ms Hall said she was not interested in dating younger men.
The model liked to quote her mother’s advice on keeping a man: “You must be a maid in the living room, a cook in the kitchen and a whore in the bedroom. I said I’d hire the other two and take care of the bedroom bit.”