Reports are flying that the wife of the Rolling Stones guitarist Ronnie Wood is consulting divorce lawyers in what could be one of the biggest UK divorces ever…
Wife and former model Jo Woods (53) is reportedly speaking with divorce lawyers with a view to officially ending her 23-year marriage to the Rolling Stones guitarist Ronnie Wood (61).
Ronnie Wood’s affair with Russian student Ekaterina Ivanova (20) was exposed in June.
He has reportedly been living with Ivanova in recent weeks, and the couple were photographed together last week at the London restaurant Locanda Locatelli.
A friend of Jo’s said: “Jo has spoken with her legal team—and they’ve made it clear she is in a terrifically strong position. And she knows there is little argument that she has saved Ronnie’s career and life from the drugs and booze many times.”
Jo has attended every tour with Ronnie since they met, picking out his clothes and cooking him organic food.
And she’s been pivotal in his business success. She has a controlling stake in the couple’s finances and acts as Ronnie’s personal management assistant on deals. She is also a joint director of his music empire Rockyarch and company secretary of Ron’s paintings business Scream Art.
The couple share homes around the world, including a £12 million London mansion in Kingston-upon-Thames, crammed with valuable antiques and art. Their Co Kildare home is estimated to be worth £4.5 million and the couple also own a £250,000 cottage in Devon.
Ronnie has a daughter, Leah, 30, who married Jack Macdonald, a television producer and her boyfriend of 11 years, in June this year.
Top British matrimonial and family lawyer Ayesha Vardag of Ayesha Vardag Solicitors (www.ayeshavardag.com) said it looked as if this would be one of the most ‘classic sorts’ of asset sharing cases.
“Where you have a true partnership, with wife and husband working side-by-side in their different ways for their family’s success, the 50-50 split towards which the courts are moving on wealth built up during the marriage actually seems to make sense.
“Where the claiming spouse has been directly involved in the business then their contribution may carry additional weight,” Vardag adds.
“This may have been a factor in the £60 million payout reported to have been made in the out-of-court settlement last October by Anne Robinson to her husband, who had also been her manager.
“The law on sharing future income and on special contributions remains very uncertain and it will be helpful, if this case fights, to have greater clarity from the courts on those issues.
“One way or another, this is likely to be another landmark payout case in a run of landmark payout cases. In the event of a divorce between Ronnie and Jo Wood, she could be entitled to half of his fortune, estimated to be around £70 million, or a higher share based on special contribution, as well as a possible share of his future earnings.”
In 2004, former England and Arsenal star Ray Parlour’s divorce with wife Karen set a precedent in marriage payouts when a judge ruled he should not only pay a sum based on their time together, but also on what he would earn over the next few years..