The divorce battle between Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie has turned brutal.
Angelina is claiming Brad hasn’t paid any “meaningful” child support for a year and a half during their divorce proceedings and plans to file a court order requesting retroactive child support, reports Page Six.
But Brad’s camp says he paid his ex $1.3 million to support her and the kids, and loaned her $8 million to help her buy her current home. His camp says Angelina is trying to smear him because the former couple can’t agree on a settlement and she's showing him she's playing hardball.
Angelina's camp came back to say, "Child support is not optional in California. Typically a father of means would pay these expenses voluntarily without the need for a request or court order. We are hopeful that this can be resolved without further delay or posturing.”
“This happened because Brad became fed up and said he wanted to start the formal process of divorce again and filed papers to do that,” a source close to Brad said. “Brad has completely lived up to his commitments as far as child support and will continue to do so. This is nothing more than a publicity stunt because he wanted to restart the formal process to divorce.”
Angelina filed for divorce in September 2016, but proceedings were put on hold so the duo could try to work out child custody issues on their own—which is obviously failing, says Leena Hingnikar, partner at Walzer Melcher family law firm in Los Angeles.
“I took a look at their filings and it’s strange … unless you wanted this brought out in the public eye, there wouldn’t be a reason to bring this public, especially after you said you were going to keep it private,” Hingnikar says. “It sounds like they’re using a private judge or mediator to get the case moving along and Angelina didn’t do that. The filing seemed to come out of nowhere.”
Hingnikar says Angelina is likely “trying to change the narrative” because there’s been a lot of bad press about her and visitations and re-establishing the relationships with the kids and Brad.
“Coming out to say he hasn’t been paying child support would give her a reason to interrupt that time and shift [public perception] of him, she can accuse him of anything, it still makes people wonder, is this guy really not paying support for his kids? The reality is we don’t know, but when you make statements like that in public it does make people think. The public really reacts strongly to people not supporting their kids.”
So she’s trying to mess with Brad, and bottom line is, if parties are getting along and trying to get through the divorce without all the publicity, they "don’t accuse the other person of not paying child support,” Hingnikar says. “Obviously the case is not going smoothly—an accusation of not paying child support is a huge accusation.”
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