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US$1b question in Hamms' divorce case

Judge rules bulk of wealth gained through 'passive' means, not via the efforts or skills of either spouse

Published Mon, Nov 17, 2014 · 09:50 PM
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New York

JUST how much of Harold Hamm's fortune was amassed through his skill and hard work? That was a key question that Oklahoma divorce judge Howard Haralson had to consider in his decision last week, when he ordered Mr Hamm, the chief executive officer of Continental Resources - and Oklahoma's richest person - to hand over more than US$1 billion in cash and assets to his ex-wife in one of the largest-ever US divorce judgments.

Judge Haralson awarded Sue Ann Hamm just 6 per cent of the US$18 billion fortune her lawyers say the couple had amassed at the start of the divorce trial in August. Mr Hamm called the judgment "fair and equitable" but his ex-wife called it unfair and plans to appeal.

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