Family Law

Judge Ups Wife's Divorce Ante to $184 M


In a highly unusual decision to award a divorcing wife half of her family’s massive marital assets, an Illinois state judge yesterday upheld his earlier ruling to split Michael and Maya Polsky’s property 50-50. Its value has grown since Cook County Circuit Judge William Boyd first decided the issue last fall, and her portion is now reportedly worth $184 million, a possible divorce case record for an award to a wife.

Her lawyer, Howard Rosenfeld, told the Chicago Tribune on Monday that the ruling appropriately recognizes Polsky’s role as an equal partner and confidant of her husband, even though he took the leading role in running the energy companies that created their wealth. “If you don’t treat a long-term spouse as a partner, what is she?” Rosenfeld says. “A servant?”

The couple arrived in this country as Russian immigrants in 1976 with $500 to their names, ABAJournal.com reported yesterday. Both husband and wife had asked Boyd to consider his initial October 2006 ruling on the division of their property, each seeking a greater share of the marital estate.

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