It appears that the divorce of Illinois native and NBA star Dwyane Wade has finally come to an end after six years of conflict. On Monday, a family law judge reportedly upheld a divorce settlement that orders Wade to pay his ex, Siohvaughn Funches-Wade, $5 million and required both parties to sign a "non-disparage" agreement.
The non-disparage agreement states that neither party will make disparaging remarks about one another to third parties. For the past several years, both Wade and Funches-Wade have frequently blasted each other in the media. At this point, the partites have yet to determine exactly what counts as a "disparaging remark" under the agreement.
At the court hearing, an attorney for Funches-Wade said his client never agreed to the divorce settlement, including the non-disparage agreement. However, the judge presiding over the case disagreed and found the settlement to be valid. Under the settlement, Funches-Wade will also get the couples' former home in South Holland as well as four vehicles.
An attorney representing the NBA star said he believes the non-disparage agreement will allow for fines to be assessed if either party breaches the agreement. Additionally, he said he expects the agreement will also preclude Funches-Wade from disparaging Wade's family members and his girlfriend, actress Gabrielle Union.
This is an unfortante example of a divorce that spun out of control. Not only has the six-year process undoubtedly been difficult on Wade and Funches-Wade, it has likely taken a toll on the couple's two children as well. Whenever possible, it is best to avoid these long and heartbreaking divorce cases by pursuing other options such as mediation or collaborative law.
Both of these options allow the parties to work out their divorce settlement while remaining respectful and considerate of one another. Sadly, in many contested divorce cases that are litigated within the court system, parties lose sight of their true values and only focus on getting even.
Source: Chicago Sun-Times, "Dwyane Wade to pay ex-wife $5 million in divorce settlement," Mitch Dudek, July 22, 2013