Perhaps the fact that so many country music songs are ballads about breakups is related to the fact that a lot of country music stars have run into their own troubles with marriage. While celebrities, in general, tend to have a shorter marriage span than average people, famous breakups not only come with public attention but big price tags. The country stars on this list had sometimes messy, sometimes expensive divorces, triggered by such forces as infidelity, the stressors of living life in the spotlight, the exhaustion of touring and sometimes just growing apart.
While some folks signed prenuptial agreements, those who married before they were famous may not have had the foresight to even consider such an option. As such, some of these stars had to pay out big divorce settlements. Here are some of the costliest.
Last updated: April 15, 2021
Kacey Musgraves and Ruston Kelly
The Grammy-award-winning musician Kacey Musgraves divorced her husband of only 2 1/2 years, Ruston Kelly, in July 2020. It appeared amicable, per their joint statement, which read: “We believe that we were put into each other’s lives for a divine reason and have both changed each other infinitely for the better…” According to TMZ, they have agreed to sell their house, and plan to split any revenue. Musgraves, who has a net worth of $10 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth, will receive 84.4% and the rest of the balance will go to Kelly, who has a net worth of around $600,000.
LeAnn Rimes and Dean Sheremet
Singer LeAnn Rimes was just 19 years old when she married Dean Sheremet, himself only 21 years old at the time, according to Country Fan Cast. They married in 2002 and divorced in 2009, in a swirl of rumors about Rimes’ infidelity with Eddie Cibrian, whom she later married in 2011. The singer has a net worth of $10 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth. Though their divorce settlement was private, Us Weekly reported that Sheremet, who initiated the divorce, asked Rimes for spousal support plus all attorney fees and costs. They tried to sell their custom-built mansion in 2009 for $7.45 million but weren’t able to find a buyer until 2012, selling it for only $4.1 million.
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Blake Shelton and Miranda Lambert
Blake Shelton and Miranda Lambert both have had successful music careers. Lambert has earned a record-breaking number of Academy of Country Music Awards and her net worth is valued at $60 million. Shelton, a chart-topping singer and co-host of the musical reality show “The Voice,” is worth $100 million. The couple met in 2005, dated for six years, married for four and broke up in July 2015 while surrounded by rumors of infidelity. According to Us Weekly, they had signed a prenup, though specifics are not public record, and plan to split their shared assets. The magazine reports that Lambert took their Nashville property while Shelton got their Oklahoma ranch.
Reba McEntire and Narvel Blackstock
Reba McEntire is more than just a country singer — she’s a country music icon, who has sold over 90 million records globally in her career. She married her manager of nine years, Narvel Blackstock, in 1989, had one son with him, Shelby, and then they divorced amicably in 2015. McEntire, who has a net worth of over $95 million, allegedly settled with Blackstock for a mind-boggling $47.5 million.
A joint statement about their separation read: “Despite this being the end of their marriage, they continue to support each other. They have worked together for 35 years and will continue to do so.”
Shania Twain and Robert John 'Mutt' Lange
Powerhouse country singer Shania Twain, who has an astonishing net worth of $400 million, married her husband Robert John “Mutt” Lange in 1993, only six months after they first met. The couple has one son, Eja, and appeared happily married for fourteen years. In 2008, Twain found out her husband was cheating with her close friend Marie-Anne Thiébaud. They divorced in 2010. In 2011, Twain shocked everyone by marrying Thiébaud’s ex-husband, Frederic. While their divorce settlement was sealed, Lange, a record producer, was already worth around $225 million, so divorce was unlikely to leave him broke.
Garth Brooks and Sandy Mahl
Garth Brooks and his college sweetheart, Sandy Mahl, married in 1986 and divorced in 2000 after 14 years married. They have three daughters. The divorce is considered one of the most expensive, according to Celebrity Net Worth. Brooks, who is worth $400 million, allegedly paid Mahl $125 million in their divorce settlement. Brooks married country artist Trisha Yearwood in 2005.
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