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Johnny Depp and Amber Heard are officially divorced

Maryland residents may have seen headlines about the divorce of actors Johnny Depp and Amber Heard. After months of front-page stories discussing their split, the two were officially divorced on Jan. 13. The divorce was finalized in Los Angeles County Superior Court with an agreement that 53-year-old Depp pay 30-year-old Heard $7 million.

Depp and Heard were married for 15 months, and Heard filed for divorce in May 2016. Days after she did so, Heard accused Depp of domestic violence and took out a restraining order against him. Court records indicate that Heard accused Depp of throwing a cellphone at her face and destroying things in her apartment during an argument in May. Heard also alleged that Depp was abusive at other points in the marriage.

Heard has claimed that she will donate her entire $7 million award to the Children's Hospital of Los Angeles and the American Civil Liberties Union. A friend of Depp previously accused Heard of blackmailing Depp, and Depp's attorney claimed that Heard's abuse allegations were financially motivated. Depp will keep several properties and 40 vehicles and vessels as part of the divorce settlement. Heard will keep her two dogs.

Allegations of domestic violence can complicate divorce proceedings, especially when there are child custody issues involved. A person who is being accused of domestic violence may want to have representation from an attorney. An attorney may be able to help dispute false allegations of abuse so that they do not hinder a divorcing spouse's negotiating power or child custody rights.

Source: Reuters, "Actors Johnny Depp, Amber Heard finalize bitter divorce", Piya Sinha-Roy, Jan. 13, 2017

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