Why Zuckerberg Got Married the Day After the IPO

It could have been for financial reasons: divorce lawyers
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 21, 2012 10:39 AM CDT
Why Zuckerberg Got Married the Day After the IPO
This photo provided by Facebook shows Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan at their wedding ceremony in Palo Alto, Calif., Saturday, May 19, 2012.   (AP Photo/Facebook, Allyson Magda Photography)

How romantic: Turns out the timing of Mark Zuckerberg's surprise weekend wedding may have had more to do with financial savvy than anything else, Reuters reports. California has community-property laws, meaning that any property created during the marriage should be split evenly in a divorce. In the case of Zuck's new wife, Priscilla Chan, that means that if she contested the prenup they almost certainly signed, she could attempt to snag Facebook stock Zuckerberg held before they were married by claiming its value increased during the marriage.

Though it would be a tough fight for her, it's still a fight Zuck would want to avoid, thus making it a good idea for him to marry the day after the IPO, at which point, "The value of the company is absolutely known," says one divorce attorney. "There's no dispute over it." If the timing of the wedding was accidental, "then it was a very nice coincidence," adds another. Also noteworthy: Had the couple continued to live together without marrying, Chan could possibly have snagged a larger portion of Zuckerberg's assets in a separation, because, notes one of the lawyers, "In California, people who live together without the benefit of marriage could claim they had an agreement to pool resources and efforts." (More Mark Zuckerberg stories.)

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