Bill and Melinda Gates Announce Divorce

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Co-founder of Microsoft Bill Gates and his wife, Melinda Gates, the power couple philanthropists announced they are ending their 27-year marriage and have a separation agreement in place as they move toward the division of assets.

"The couple on Monday filed a divorce petition in King County Superior Court in Washington state. The filing indicated they have a separation agreement under which they plan to divide their assets," according to the Wall Street Journal.

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Two identical statements, each posted on their separate Twitter accounts, explained "after a great deal of thought and a lot of work on our relationship we have made the decision to end our marriage."

The pair crated the Gates Foundation an organization dedicated to enabling people around the world to live health, productive lives. The foundation, which has donated more than 50billion to provide pure drinking water, education, modernized farm techniques, gender equality, and the myriad of diseases including HIV, the Coronavirus, Malaria, Enteric and Diarrheal and maternal, newborn and child health.

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The joint statements also said, "Over the last 27 years, we have raised three incredible children and built a foundation that works all over the world to enable all people to lead healthy, productive lives. We continue to share a belief in that mission and will continue our work together at the foundation, but no longer believe we can grow together as a couple in this past phase of our lives. We ask for space and privacy for our family as we begin to navigate this new life."

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Bill Gates, the co-founder of Microsoft has an estimated net worth of $130billion. Ms. Gates, a former employee of Microsoft, could be in line for half of all the couple's assets as their main residences are Washington State, which is known for its community property states, as well as California, where the pair also own real estate.

They have asked for privacy as they navigate the future.

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Photo credit: Kjetil Ree.

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