Charlie Sheen in March 2009
Image via Wikipedia

Charlie Sheen and Brooke Mueller are officially divorced, having filed their papers Monday morning in theLos Angelescourthouse.  They initially separated in December 2009 after a highly publicized Christmas Day fight.   The terms of the divorce agreement were complicated throughout the process.  Sheen refused to pay alimony. There was a question of who would have custody of their two year old twin sons Bob and Max while Sheen is on his world tour and Mueller was checked into rehab. 

Even Sheen’s ex-wife Denise Richards was part of the discussions. Richards has primary physical custody of her young daughters with Sheen, Sam and Lola. So she understands the desire of children to have stability in their lives.   Seeing Charlie off on his “Violent Torpedo of Truth Tour” and Mueller in a drug and alcohol rehab facility prompted Richards to offer to take care of the boys herself when there appeared to be no good options available.

Did Richards see herself as a sort of guardian angel for Bob and Max?

Mueller is now out of rehab with a voluntary agreement, a finalized divorce decree and primary physical custody of the boys.  The agreement probably requires her to undergo periodic drug testing.

According to reports, Sheen will not be paying alimony.  Mueller will receive a lump sump payout of $757,698.70, plus $1 million as her share of the marital home. 

The boys, however, are entitled to child support from their father commensurate with their father’s earning capacity.  Sheen will be paying $55,000 per month to Mueller as child support.

Mueller has insisted on specific language in the agreement that references Denise Richards, similar to a “Most Favored Nation” agreement, in which “under no circumstances shall the child support paid by Charlie for Bob and Max be less than the child support paid by Charlie to Denise Richards for [daughters] Sam and Lola.”

In most states, Child Support orders are modifiable for as long as the children are under the age of majority, if the moving party can prove a significant change in circumstances.  It is usually a burden upon the custodial parent to try to determine how much the ex-spouse is making and whether that means the kids deserve more money.  This structure makes it difficult for a single parent with limited funds to always get the right amount of child support.

Under the Sheen/Mueller agreement, the children have a third party also looking out for them.  This agreement means that, if Denise Richards seeks an increase in child support for her daughters, she will automatically be seeking an identical increase for Bob and Max, effectively making her their guardian angel, after all.

What We Love:  Even if Mueller is not always able to know how much money her sons should be receiving from their father, this agreement protects them beyond their own mother’s ability to prove Sheen’s financial circumstances.

Published by Sharon Oberst DeFala

Sharon Oberst DeFala has practiced low-impact safe divorce since 1992.

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