When Yankees’ homerun king, Alex Rodriguez (“A-Rod”) retired from baseball in 2016, he was earning over $30 million dollars a year, which is why he was able to pay his ex-wife, Cynthia Scurtis, $115,000 a month in combined tax-free spousal support and child support. The ex-couple have two children, Natasha (13) and Ella (10), and when they separated a decade ago after a four-year marriage amid rumors of infidelity by A-Rod with superstar Madonna, they came to a quick settlement in only three months’ time. Now, A-Rod is apparently earning about $3 million dollars a year as a baseball analyst for ESPN and Fox Sports, and TMZ reports that he has requested to modify his support obligation. It is also reported that their parties’ settlement agreement said they would renegotiate support when he retired from baseball.
A-Rod is alleging that since his income has dropped by 90% and Scurtis has a master’s degree in psychology and is choosing not to work, he should not have to bankroll her life with her fiancé (and new child). After a decade of receiving spousal support, according to A-Rod, Scurtis has millions in the bank, along with three homes and multiple cars.
In California, A-Rod could argue that pursuant to Family Code Section 4058 (b), the court should consider the “earning capacity” of Scurtis when modifying support, especially if Scurtis has not been seeking work. In addition, one of the mandatory factors that the Court must consider in making an order for spousal support is “the marketable skills of the supported party; the job market for those skills; the time and expenses required for the supported party to acquire the appropriate education or training to develop those skills; and the possible need for retraining or education to acquire other, more marketable skills or employment.” Family Code Section 4320(a) (1). While whatever Scurtis could earn with her degree would pale in comparison to A-Rod’s current income, A-Rod does have statutory support for his request.
A-Rod is famous for having dated successful, wealthy women, such as Anne Wojcicki (23andMe founder and CEO), Cameron Diaz, Kate Hudson, and now Jennifer Lopez (“J-Lo”), with whom he has lived the past two years. In fact, J-Rod (or A-Lo) just bought a $15 million Park Avenue apartment together. Scurtis likely doesn’t feel sorry for A-Rod, especially given J-Lo’s estimated $500 million empire, and she may be playing hardball (something A-Rod should be used to).
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