Bill and Melinda Gates' first divorce hearing is set for this Friday

Bill and Melinda Gates' first divorce hearing is set for this Friday
In this photo taken Feb. 1, 2019, Bill and Melinda Gates pose for a photo in Kirkland, Wash.Elaine Thompson/AP
  • Bill and Melinda Gates announced they would divorce last week.
  • Their first divorce hearing will be on Friday, May 14.
  • The couple was married for 27 years and jointly run a massive charitable foundation.

Bill and Melinda Gates' first divorce hearing is set for Friday, May 14, according to court filings.

The couple announced the end of their 27-year marriage on May 3, less than two weeks ahead of the first hearing.

"After a great deal of thought and a lot of work on our relationship, we have made the decision to end our marriage," their joint statement said. "Over the last 27 years, we have raised three incredible children and built a foundation that works all over the world to enable all people to lead healthy, productive lives."


They jointly run the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

The short timeline between the announcement and the first legal proceedings can likely be explained by reports that the divorce has been in the works for a while. Melinda Gates reportedly considered divorce and met with lawyers for two years before the official filing, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Neither party has said what led to the divorce, though sources told the paper that Melinda Gates had concerns about her husband's meetings with Jeffrey Epstein and talked with advisors about it. Melinda French Gates is listed as the petitioner on court documents.


They may have also waited to announce their separation until their youngest child turned 18, a source told People.

The hearing will take place in King County, Washington, where Gates' $130 million "Xanadu 2.0" residence is located. The couple did not sign a prenup, but they have a separation contract in place that dictates how over $200 million in real estate will be divided.