The wife of New York real estate mogul Stephen Ross has filed for divorce, and she could get up to $300 million in the proceedings.
Kara Ross, nee Gaffney, 55 submitted divorce papers in the Manhattan Supreme Court on Monday, after 18 years of marriage to Stephen, 81, the founder of Related Companies, a New York City-based real estate firm with properties throughout the world that was responsible for the new development at Hudson Yards in 2019.
Stephen is said to be worth between $7 billion to $8 billion, and has investments in SoulCycle and Equinox.
The divorce filings classify it as ‘uncontested,’ meaning she does not expect there to be a court dispute, the New York Daily News reported.
Kara Ross, nee Gaffney, right, filed divorce papers from billionaire property owner Stephen Ross, left, in the Manhattan Supreme Court on Monday after 18 years of marriage. She could get up to $300 million in the proceedings
Both Stephen and Kara have now obtained high-end lawyers who have previously handled celebrity cases in the divorce proceedings
Kara and Stephen married in 2003 and have two children each from previous marriages – Kara had daughters Jennifer and Kimberly, and Stephen had Avery and Drew.
They announced in a joint statement to Page Six in April that they were planning to get a divorce.
‘We have deep love and respect for each other,’ they said at the time. ‘We will continue to be a part of each other’s lives and support what is best for the health and happiness of our family.’
Unnamed sources told Page Six that the separation was amicable and the couple had a prenuptial agreement, which stipulates that Kara, a jewelry designer to stars like Michelle Obama, Oprah Winfrey and Anne Hathaway, will not get any of Stephen’s business holdings.
Still, a legal expert not involved in the proceedings speculated Kara could get up to $300 million ‘making this one of the most expensive divorces in New York.’
Stephen, 81, right is a majority owner of the Miami Dolphins. He is pictured speaking with President and CEO of Hard Rock Stadium Tom Garfinkle and Baltimore Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti prior to a game earlier this month
Stephen is good friends with Donald Trump, and threw a $10,000-a-seat fundraiser for the then-president in 2019
Stephen, a close friend of former President Donald Trump’s who threw a $10,000-a-seat fundraiser for the then-president in 2019, started out as a tax attorney, Page Six reported, before founding Related Companies in 1972. I
The company is now said to have developed or acquired more than $60 billion worth of properties from New York to Shanghai, including a large amount of affordable housing, and in March 2019, the company opened the new Hudson Yards development.
In 2009, Stephen acquired a majority share of the Miami Dolphins for more than $1 billion.
A source with inside information told Page Six back in April that Stephen’s ownership of the Dolphins and Related Companies would not be split in the divorce proceedings, saying: ‘His business holdings will not be affected by the divorce.’
The couple own an 11,000-square-foot beachfront property with seven bedrooms and 11 bathrooms in Palm Beach, Florida
The Palm Beach home sits on a 2.1 acre lot, according to Palm Beach public records, and was assessed in 2020 for $37 million
Together, the Rosses own a nearly 10,000-square-foot mansion in Southampton with two separate buildings, eight bedrooms and 10 bathrooms worth an estimated $6.2 million
It has an expansive, lush, green backyard that leads to a private boat launch
But together, Stephen and Kara own a nearly 10,000-square-foot mansion in Southampton with two separate buildings, eight bedrooms and 10 bathrooms worth an estimated $6.2 million that was assessed at about $4.1 million in 2020.
It comes with a wide, green backyard that leads to a private boat launch and a separate tennis court.
They also have a mansion in Palm Beach, Florida, known as ‘The Reef,’ which Stephen reportedly paid $31.8 million for in 2007.
That 11,000-square-foot home has seven bedrooms and 11 bathrooms on a 2.1 acre lot, according to Palm Beach public records. It was assessed in 2020 for $37 million.
Both mansions include a private pool and sit in front of the water.
The couple shared a penthouse condominium at Related’s Time Warner Center overlooking Central Park
The couple listed the condominium in 2019 for $75 million and sold it in July for just about $50 million
The Rosses also shared a massive 8,274-square-foot penthouse condominium at Related’s Time Warner Center overlooking Central Park.
It features a 42-foot-wide living room, a 22-foot-wide dining room, a professional chef’s kitchen and a breakfast nook with views of the Hudson River.
Throughout the five-bedroom, six-and-a-half bath penthouse, there are marble floors, floor-to-ceiling windows offering a panoramic view of the city, with dual fireplaces and doors and flooring made of Bubinga wood, and beams and moldings made of Padouk wood, according to StreetEasy.
The penthouse also featured a powder room with LED lights that can change colors, a handblown chandelier and sculptures throughout the expansive home.
Kara told Architectural Digest in 2015 that nothing could beat the views.
‘Living above Central Park like this feels like you’re actually living in the park,’ she said at the time. ‘It’s as if you’re in a painting that’s always changing from green to yellow to red to gray and slowly back to green again.
‘It has a kind of power that most art can only dream about.’
They listed the condominium in 2019 for $75 million, CityRealty reported at the time, as the couple said they wanted to move into a new place overlooking Stephen’s development at the Hudson Yards.
It finally sold in July for just $49.9 million, according to StreetEasy.
Stephen is now being represented in the divorce proceedings by William D. Zabel from Schulte Roth and Zabel, whose clients have included George Soros, golfer Greg Norman and Howard Stern, while Kara is being represented by Judith Poller at Pryor Cashman, who has previously handled cases for Drew Barrymore and Scarlett Johansson.