With the release of the Facebook IPO recently, followed by the wedding of Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg only one day later, much speculation has been made as to whether or not Mark and his wife have a premarital agreement. While we have no definitive answer to this question, it raises important legal inquiries.
It is widely known that Mark created Facebook while a student at Harvard University and has continued to develop the company for the last 8+ plus years. Under California Family Code Section770, Facebook would be considered his separate property, because separate property of a married person includes, “all property owned by the person before marriage.” Additionally, the profits of party’s separate property are considered that party’s separate property. So, with or without a premarital agreement, as it stands today, Facebook is 100% the separate property of Mark.
Now, if Facebook continues to gain value and growth after the date of marriage and throughout the parties’ marriage, the argument could and would be made that the community is entitled to a share of that growth in value. It is this concept under the law that likely caused Mark to seek a premarital agreement before getting married. Although, based upon the recent flop of the public release and legal firestorm that has erupted, his wife may have actually come out on top!
For more information about all family law related issues, please contact Nicole Whyte or Jennifer Feldman at (949) 221-1000.