- Madeline Hancock
While we go about our daily lives, there is a quiet, multibillion-dollar war raging in a closed Oklahoma courtroom. Harold Hamm, who, according to NBCnews.com, controls more oil than anyone who isnt a king or dictator, and his wife, Sue Ann, of 25 years are splitting up. We knew that. And weve known its going to be pricey.
But now we have numbers. According to the report, the distribution of Hamms $17 billion fortune (Thats 17,000,000,000) is on the line in what is one of the most potentially expensive divorces of all time. The (literally) billion-dollar question is whether the money is the result of Hamms hard work and ingenuity, in which case, the soon-to-be-ex Mrs. Hamm could be rewarded up to half.
In short, the question at the heart of Hamm v. Hamm is whether Harold Hamm achieved oil magnate status as a result of luck or as a result of hard work and talent while married.
In past months, he has essentially said, Aw, shucks. I just happened to dig in the right place. If that is the case, his wife, with whom he never signed a prenuptial agreement and has lived apart from for years, is entitled to nothing.