Both Collins and Grant, who married 23 years ago, were in court Wednesday when the judge scheduled their divorce trial to begin Feb. 9, according to ABC 7 in Los Angeles.
But this isn’t just any celebrity divorce. Money and spousal support are at issue, however there is a more scandalous aspect to this divorce. In a recording, made by Grant while the couple attended therapy in 2012, Collins admitted to molesting three young girls over a 3-year period nearly 40 years ago.
Recordings of Collins’ confession were given to TMZ and the story made national headlines. The subsequent scandal cost Collins and he has asked the judge to suspend spousal support payments to Grant.
Collins’ attorney Mark Vincent Kaplan told ABC 7, “As a result of this recording having found its way into the public domain somehow, he has not been able to maintain or receive employment.”
Kaplan suspects Grant leaked the tapes to TMZ in order to secure a large divorce settlement but she has denied those allegations. Her divorce attorney told the court Wednesday that no spousal support is “nonstarter,” according to ABC.
Grant is trying to get her share of Collins nearly $14 million, the bulk of which he earned as the star of the popular TV show “7th Heaven.” Since the tapes surfaced the actor hasn’t has any acting roles so his attorney believes the amount awarded to Grant should be reduced accordingly.
Before the couple heads to court in February, the presiding judge ordered Collins to sit for a deposition to discuss how the molestation scandal has impacted his ability to earn. He lost several roles once the news broke and believes his estranged wife should get a smaller settlement than she is asking for.
The judge has also asked the couple to settle the terms of their divorce before the court date. But, given the way their divorce has worked out thus far, Collins and Grant are unlikely to come up with an agreeable settlement and will likely have to duke things out in court.
Collins has not been criminally charged since the tapes surfaced. He admitted to the molestation in an interview with Katie Couric, but he denied being a pedophile and said he has controlled his urges for over two decades.
The divorce between Collins and Grant is an example of how dirty and ugly a divorce can get. Fortunately not all divorces get this nasty, but when they do, the parties involved should have a tenacious and dedicated divorce attorney on their side. Saying the wrong thing or allowing your estranged spouse get to you can jeopardize the outcome of your divorce. Your attorney will keep you from making any mistakes and work to ensure you can live with the terms of your divorce settlement.