In most divorces, non-disclosure agreements simply prevent embarrassing details from getting out to the public. For example, cheating spouses might want to keep their marital misconduct under wraps – especially when both parties are guilty of infidelity. But when you start dealing with extremely high-net-worth marital estates wrapped up in major corporations, this information could be worth much more than simply a few bruised egos. In many cases, spouses are privy to confidential business information that is worth millions. This information must be protected, and as such, these non-disclosure agreements are built right into divorce agreements. 

Rupert Murdoch Bans Ex from Talking to Succession Writers

On April 12, it was reported that Rupert Murdoch’s divorce settlement contained an interesting provision. His fourth ex-wife, Jerry Hall, has been banned from speaking to Succession writers about potential story ideas. As you may know, the HBO series Succession focuses on Murdoch’s empire and all of the controversy that comes along with it. It seems clear that Rupert Murdoch does not want his divorce or any other private details of his life to make their way onto the silver screen. This goes a few steps further than the usual non-disclosure agreement during a divorce, and it shows how valuable – and sensitive – information can be when you are dealing with family empires worth billions of dollars. 

Succession is in its fourth and final season, and a plot that focuses on Murdoch’s recent divorce would ostensibly be a rather dramatic way to wrap things up. Obviously, Rupert does not want this to happen, and he has taken action to prevent it. It is also worth pointing out that Jerry Hall is a former actor and model, which means that she almost certainly has connections in the entertainment industry. And, of course, Murdoch’s empire itself is focused on media and the entertainment industry, which means both spouses are probably well-entrenched in this world. 

Other Examples of Valuable Information in Divorces

But there are many other examples of valuable information that could be worth millions as part of a divorce settlement. For example, a spouse might have knowledge about trade secrets, copyrights, and other intellectual property. If this information falls into the wrong hands, family businesses may be completely ruined within just a few short years after the divorce. This is information that is worth protecting, especially when spouses are of a vindictive mindset. Getting revenge on an ex would be as easy as leaking trade secrets to a competitor if an aggrieved spouse was so inclined. 

This is one of the many reasons why non-disclosure agreements are so common in non-litigated divorces. They may also be included in prenuptial agreements before the spouses are even married. Even embarrassing details have the power to affect businesses – even if these details have nothing to do with the actual financial performance or viability of a business. The stock market is often more about perceptions rather than actual facts, and this is why a bad news story has the power to cause stock prices to plummet.