What Really Happens If Melania And Donald Trump Get Divorced

Since Donald Trump first took office, there's been a buzz of speculation around his marriage to Melania Trump. At his inauguration, a viral video showed Melania smiling while Donald looked at her, then scowling as he looked away. And she's seemed to refuse to hold his hand in public over and over. Publicly, the two seem to lead mostly separate lives.

Body language doesn't necessarily indicate that there's trouble between the Trumps, but as the president faces an exit from the White House, there's been wild speculation that a divorce could be on the horizon. After all, it's no secret that the pair doesn't share a bed. Former Trump aide Omarosa Manigault Newman wrote in her new book, Unhinged: An Insider's Account of the Trump White House, that "In my opinion, Melania is counting every minute until he is out of office and she can divorce him" (via Newsweek).

So what would happen if Melania did divorce her husband? It's unlikely she'll be able to tell her side of the story. Trump's second wife, Marla Maples, signed a prenup with an incredibly strict nondisclosure agreement, forbidding publication of "any diary, memoir, letter, story, photograph, interview, article, essay, account or description or depiction of any kind whatsoever, whether fictionalized or not, concerning (or seeming to concern) the details of the parties' marriage" (via Vanity Fair). It's likely that Melania's prenup included a similar clause. That means anyone waiting on a post-divorce memoir or talk show circuit is likely going to end up disappointed.

Melania Trump wisely renegotiated her prenup

Regardless of how happy Melania Trump is in her marriage, despite the many scandals she's endured, she's stood by her husband. So why divorce now? For one, she's got a renegotiated prenup. According to reporting from Washington Post reporter Mary Jordan, the reason Melania initially delayed joining her husband in the White House wasn't just waiting for Barron to finish school, as the First Lady initially explained. In addition, Melania was hoping the delay would tip the power in her direction during the renegotiations. Originally, her prenup hadn't been very generous, but at that point, she'd been married to Donald much longer than his previous wives. Plus, according to Jordan, Trump's inner circle was desperate for her to return, so she could act as a calming purpose.

So why did Melania renegotiate the prenup in the first place? Divorce lawyer Christina Previte, Esq. told Nicki Swift that she believed Trump's presidential victory was what spurred Melania to take action. "I suspect that no one ever thought Donald was actually going to win," Previte said. "And then when he did win, Melania and everyone else realized the dramatic changes that they would need to make to their daily lives, including moving to Washington."

Much of Melania's prenup renegotiations revolved around her son, making sure that Barron had an equal share in the family fortune. "She wanted proof in writing that when it came to financial opportunities and inheritance, Barron would be treated as more of an equal to Trump's oldest three children," Mary Jordan reported. Melania is famously protective of her son, having aggressively pursued anyone who criticized him publicly.

Where will Melania go after the presidency ends?

As for what Melania Trump will get financially if she divorces Trump, the exact numbers are unclear. The Mirror reports that she'll likely be able to keep any gifted jewelry, and she'll be paid a tidy sum for being Barron's primary caretaker. However, it's unlikely to be enough to allow her to match her current lavish lifestyle. 

But where would Melania go after a divorce? While she showed initial reluctance to move to Washington, now that Barron is enrolled in high school, she might wait out his final years, as Barack and Michelle Obama did with their daughters, USA Today notes. The Washington Post notes that both Melania and Barrom Trump hold Slovenian citizenship. Returning to New York City is also on the table; Christina Previte told Nicki Swift that Melania previously purchased a one bedroom apartment in Trump Tower.

Based on where she registered to vote, first lady historian and Ohio University history professor Katherine Jellison guesses Melania will end up close to Mar-A-Lago. "I assume Mrs. Trump will go back to Florida – or maybe she will be able to convince her husband to return to New York as their official residence – and continue the kind of life she led before the White House," she told USA Today. Of course, without her husband, Florida might become a lot less appealing for Melania.

Whatever path Melania chooses after leaving the White House, both fans and fascinated critics will be eager to find out.