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Marriage of McTiernan & Dubrow
Court of Appeals of California
35 Cal. Rptr. 3d 287 (App. 2005)
John McTiernan (plaintiff) and Donna Dubrow (defendant) were married in November 1988. McTiernan was a movie director before he and Dubrow married. McTiernan maintained a career as a movie director during his and Dubrow’s marriage, as well as after the couple separated. Dubrow was a production company executive. McTiernan earned approximately $15 million during the course of his marriage to Dubrow. Dubrow earned approximately $1 million during the course of the marriage. McTiernan was highly regarded in his capacity as a movie director, and his success and skill level afforded him a measureable expectation of future business. Using the excess-earnings model, the trial court determined the value of McTiernan’s goodwill to be $1.5 million. This model compared each of the McTiernan’s individual earnings against the earnings of an average peer. McTiernan’s goodwill was deemed to be an asset subject to division in the martial-dissolution proceeding between McTiernan and Dubrow. McTiernan appealed the trial court’s ruling.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Flier, J.)
Concurrence (Boland, J.)
Concurrence/Dissent (Cooper, J.)
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