Colts owner Jim Irsay, wife filing for divorce
Colts owner Jim Irsay and his wife Meg are filing for divorce. According to court documents, Jim Irsay will retain complete control over the Indianapolis Colts.
Through their attorneys, the couple issued this statement:
"After 33 years, we have mutually agreed to end our marriage. Meg will continue to pursue her professional interests and her commitment to our children and grandchildren, while Jim will maintain 100 percent ownership of the Indianapolis Colts and his other business interests. Although the decision to end our marriage is a difficult one, it is the right decision for us and our family. We appreciate your respect for, and understanding of, our privacy."
The case was filed in Hamilton County Superior Court on Thursday. The couple has been separated for a decade, but now say the marriage is an "irretrievable breakdown."
Jim Irsay is worth about a billion and a half dollars, with about a billion of that being his ownership of the Indianapolis Colts.
The Colts' worth is an estimated $1.2 billion. Meg Irsay filed the court papers asking for the usual "just and reasonable division" of assets.
In Indiana's that's usually 50-50. In a news release, the couple said, "Jim will maintain one hundred percent ownership of the Colts and his other business interests."
"Continuity of ownership is critical, I think," said Indianapolis sports attorney Milt Thompson.
Thompson expects Colts' contracts with the city will not be affected by the divorce. "It shouldn't change any of the operations, nor should there be any angst on the part of any stakeholders from the city," he said.
"It may cut into [Jim Irsay's] personal wealth. It may impact his personal philanthropy but I don't know that," said Thompson.
Irsay has been a friend to Hoosier charities. He's also been a colorful booster of his daughter's yogurt shops and has brought them into the family football business, too.
"That's probably something that's going to be held within the family,''Thompson said.
"There's always the potential for any case to get messy regardless of the size of the estate," said Indianapolis divorce attorney Melanie Reichert.
When the McCourts divorced, they had to sell off the LA Dodgers to reach a settlement. But Melanie Reichert says 85% of her cases end in agreement - even big ticket ones.
"It is very dependent on what the parties have agreed to before in a premarital agreement or what they may agree to as the process continues,"she said
Fan Chris Teter is not so sure it'll be that easy with over a billion bucks at stake, but thinks fans are safe. "When you're a die hard Colts fan, you're a Colts fan."
What happens to the $2 million plus dollar Jack Kerouac original manuscript now and who gets custody of Irsay's famed tweets? That remains to be seen.
Meg Irsay also requested that her maiden name be restored.
The couple said they would not be making any further statements.