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Afeni Shakur's divorce case shows importance of prenups

Sources report that Afeni Shakur, the mother of late rapper Tupac Shakur, has filed for divorce against her husband of 12 years, Gust Davis. Ms. Shakur apparently did not have a prenuptial agreement with her husband in place, and he is reportedly seeking a significant amount of property, including the right to live in the couple's 50-acre ranch in North Carolina.

According to court documents, Mr. Davis is also requesting keys to some houseboats the couple owned, a Jaguar and other assorted assets. He is also requesting that Ms. Shakur be ordered to pay him alimony out of the money she receives from Tupac Shakur's estate.

Ms. Shakur has filed legal motions requesting that the court deny Mr. Davis's alimony request. Mr. Shakur's estate reportedly pays her around $900,000 each year, of which she receives about $20,000 monthly after the expenses are paid. Mr. Davis has asked that he receive half of that amount for the remainder of his life.

As North Carolina is an equitable distribution state, marital assets are divided in a manner in which the court considers to be fair, rather than simply splitting them down the middle. Ms. Shakur's case demonstrates the importance of people who have significant assets to draft prenuptial agreements before getting married. If she and her estranged husband had signed one, the court would most likely have followed it as long as it was deemed to be valid and not entered into under duress. People who have a lot of assets and who are planning to marry may want to talk to a family law attorney in order to see how they can best be protected in the event that the relationship comes to an end.

Source: BET, ""Afeni Shakur files for divorce," John Justice, March 19, 2016

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