Dodger Ownership Trial Turns on Marital Deal

      LOS ANGELES (CN) – Frank and Jamie McCourt’s divorce trial to determine the true owner of the Dodgers turns in good measure on the examination by nationally prominent litigator David Boies of the real estate lawyer who arranged the property settlement at the heart of the contentious trial.




     When Boies asked real estate lawyer Larry Silverstein last week why he did not correct the agreement to make it clear that the Dodgers were a separate asset belonging entirely to Frank, Silverstein could not explain why.
     Representing the wife, Boies, asked if Silverstein knew whether the Dodgers would become a quasi-community or community property when the couple moved to California and divorced in California.
     “I didn’t have any certainty on that issue, no,” Silverstein said. He added that the agreement “doesn’t show who the owner of the Dodgers was.”
     Referring to an earlier version of the marital property agreement, Boies asked, “You do not read it as excluding McCourt company and LA Dodgers from Frank’s separate property, just by looking at the four corners of this paper?”
     “Just by looking at this paper, correct,” Silverstein answered.
     Boies further pressed him on the later agreement apparently intended to clarify the status of the Dodgers as a separate asset belonging to Frank.
     Silverstein acknowledged that he did not correct the most essential word in the document.
     After Boies finished examining Silverstein, Victoria Cook from Susman Godfrey took her turn questioning Silverstein.
     Representing the husband, Cook asked Silverstein what Frank and Jamie McCourt agreed on in their agreement.
     He emphasized that the agreement was drafted to address Jamie’s credit issues.
     “I made a point that they each had their separate property in California,” Silverstein said. “I went through what assets were Frank’s and what assets were Jamie’s. The businesses were Frank’s and the houses were Jamie’s. It was consistent with what they asked all long.”
     Silverstein also added that the final marital property agreement listed the Dodgers as Frank’s separate asset and Jamie did not object.
     “Did she ever express that she wanted any future or present interest in Frank’s businesses?” Cook asked.
     “Absolutely not,” Silverstein answered.

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