His ex Oksana Grigorieva probably will get primary custody – but no alimony since they weren't married

By Mike Fleeman and Oliver Jones
Updated April 16, 2010 06:00 PM
Credit: FayesVision/WENN

What’s his latest breakup going to cost Mel Gibson?

According to a family law specialist, the wealthy actor/director/producer will likely have to pay a large amount of child support to ex-girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva for their 5-month-old daughter, but probably will not be making alimony payments since they weren’t married.

“This is not dissolution of marriage action. The mother would have rights to child support, which in the case of Mr. Gibson, will be very substantial,” says attorney Steven Knowles, who estimates support of $12,000 to $15,000 a month. “He is what we call a high-income earner, and there is a high-income earner stipulation that says they must pay any amount reasonably necessary for the support of the child.”

But Gibson, who already is in the midst of what promises to be a monumentally expensive divorce from his wife of three decades, Robin Gibson, likely won’t have to pay alimony to Grigorieva as well since they were never married, even under California’s famous Marvin palimony laws for unmarried couples.

“Merely living together and having a child does not give the mother any rights to property and certainly no spousal support,” says Knowles, who’s not involved in the Gibson action.

As for primary custody, that’ll likely go to the mother. “Mr. Gibson’s history or alcohol problems, his multiple arrests, and his public displays of violence will put him on an uphill slope in terms of equal or joint custody of his daughter,” says Knowles.