Judge: Jamie McCourt co-owns Dodgers

ESPN The Magazine. reports that The judge presiding over the bitter battle for the Dodgers has granted Jamie McCourt's request to throw out the marital property agreement that gives her ex-husband sole ownership of the team. Attorneys for Frank McCourt indicated that they plan to file another claim that would give their client sole ownership of the Dodgers.

The ruling clears the way for the Dodgers to be shared under California's community property law. If the ruling stands, it is possible that the Dodgers could be sold if one of the McCourts can't buy out the interests of the other.

In a decision given to attorneys for both parties, Judge Scott Gordon found that the contract at the heart of the fight over the team was not valid or enforceable and that it must be set aside.

Frank McCourt had asked Gordon to uphold the post-nuptial agreement the couple signed in 2004 that gave him control of the Dodgers and gave Jamie McCourt the couple's considerable roster of multimillion-dollar homes. The McCourts were divorced last month after 31 years of marriage. They have four grown sons.

The ruling brings to an end the first phase of the couple's contentious and costly division of assets. Attorneys for Frank McCourt already have indicated to the court that they plan to file another claim that would give their client sole ownership of the Dodgers.

The 10-page postnuptual document exists in two versions: one that gives Frank McCourt sole ownership of the Dodgers, the stadium and the surrounding property, worth hundreds of millions of dollars; and one that doesn't.

A family attorney testified during the divorce trial that he changed a key portion of the marital agreement that went from excluding the Dodgers from Frank McCourt's separate property to including the team, and didn't tell the couple.

Jamie McCourt, who filed for divorce in October 2009, wanted the agreement thrown out and their assets divided as community property. She believes she was the team's co-owner and would never have signed away her purported stake in the Dodgers had she known the agreement took it from her.

Frank McCourt has argued the pact was his wife's idea so she could protect her separate property from his business creditors.

The McCourts lavish spending habits and their business acumen with the Dodgers has been on full display. Legal bills alone are estimated to surpass $20 million.

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