Vanessa Trump's recent financial windfall is safe from Donald Trump Jr. in the estranged couple's divorce proceedings, says a top N.Y.C. divorce attorney
“He cannot” touch it, says Raoul Felder, who is not affiliated with the case. “New York State, like many states, makes a division between separate property and marital property. It’s only marital property that can be divided.”
“The statute says that third-party gifts, or money you get from third parties directly, is not included in a marital pot,” Felder tells PEOPLE. “So she is absolutely secure.”
Trump Jr., who has five kids with Vanessa, is reportedly trying to find out exactly how much money his estranged wife has in the bank.
“I would bet that the young man’s prenuptial agreement — and you better believe he has one — provides for separate property and third-party gifts, and follows the statute exactly,” says Felder.
“He could not have made a mistake like this,” Felder says of the provision being in a prenup — if, for no other reason, than his twice-divorced father, President Donald Trump, would have required it. “Donald would not permit a mistake because what would be at stake would be all that he (Donald Sr.) would give him (Don Jr.) or leave him.”
The New York Post reports that Vanessa’s family recently “came into millions” due to her father Charles Haydon’s investment in Rao’s Specialty Foods.
Haydon was an early investor of up to $1 million for a 30 percent piece of the company, the Post reports.
The business started in 1992 to sell the marinara sauce made at Rao’s, an exclusive Manhattan Italian restaurant, and expanded to a variety of sauces, olive oils and dressings sold worldwide.
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According to the Post, the company was sold in 2017 for about $414 million to a big corporate firm, and Vanessa’s family received a “juicy payout.”
Following the sale, Vanessa’s mother, Bonnie, bought the Fifth Avenue penthouse for $6.4 million in cash that had been owned by the later former Fox News chairman Roger Ailes.
Trump Jr. and Vanessa, both 40, share children Kai Madison, 10, Donald III, 9, Tristan, 6, Spencer, 5, and Chloe, 3.
Vanessa filed for divorce on March 15 after 12 years of marriage. The couple released a joint statement at the time, saying: “After 12 years of marriage, we have decided to go our separate ways. We will always have tremendous respect for each other and our families.”
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Shortly after Vanessa filed for divorce in March, the New York Post‘s Page Six reported that Trump Jr. had an affair years earlier with former Celebrity Apprentice contestant and Danity Kane singer Aubrey O’Day. Trump Jr. has neither confirmed nor denied the affair.
“Donald Jr. and and Vanessa are not fond of each other, but will do what is necessary to protect the kids from any issues,” a social source close to the Trumps recently told PEOPLE.
“They are co-parenting, and while Vanessa is a hands-on mother and always there, Donald is also a good father. He is around for his kids. But he has his own place in [upstate] New York,” the source added, referencing Trump Jr.’s cabin in the Catskills, where he often visits on weekends in order to get a little privacy and indulge in passions including hunting and fishing.
“He has many hobbies and interests, and is sort of a loner so he will be fine whether or not he finds someone else right away or not,” the source told PEOPLE.