Have you ever wondered how much celebrities pay in child support? When you’re a famous actor, singer, or athlete, big bucks often mean big payments. We’re not just talking a few hundred a month, we’re talking hundreds of thousands of dollars. These celebrity child support payments are truly jaw-dropping.
You’ve probably heard of some of the most expensive divorces in Hollywood history with massive settlement amounts, but child support is a whole other beast. While alimony ends at some point, child support continues until the kids turn 18 and sometimes longer if they go to college. For the rich and famous, the costs of raising children seem to know no bounds.
Whether the amounts seem fair or not, you have to admit these 15 most expensive celebrity child support payments are pretty mind-boggling. From Eddie Murphy to Mike Tyson to Britney Spears, you won’t believe how much these stars are shelling out each month to their exes for the kids. Think your child support payment is expensive? Just wait until you see these. Buckle up, it’s going to be a wild ride!
Eddie Murphy – $51,000 Per Month
Eddie Murphy agreed to pay his ex-wife Nicole Mitchell $51,000 per month in child support for their five children after their divorce in 2006. At the time, it was one of the highest child support settlements in Hollywood history.
Murphy, known for blockbuster comedies in the ‘80s like Beverly Hills Cop and Coming to America, was one of the highest-paid actors of his generation. His films earned over $6.6 billion at the worldwide box office, so the high child support amount was not surprising given his immense wealth and the well-being of his children.
The monthly amount covered various expenses for the five Murphy children – Bria, Myles, Shayne, Zola, and Bella – including tuition, transportation, and extracurricular activities. Mitchell was given sole legal and physical custody of the children, while Murphy received visitation rights.
While $51,000 a month is an eye-watering amount for most people, it represents only a tiny fraction of Murphy’s earnings and assets. For one of the most successful comedians of all time, the comfort and opportunities provided to his children were clearly a top priority in the settlement.
The Murphy children have since grown up and become independent. Bria works as an artist, Myles is an actor, and Shayne plays baseball. Though the child support payments have likely ended after many years, Murphy’s children were given opportunities to pursue their dreams thanks to their father’s generosity and Mitchell’s care. For a celebrity couple’s divorce, this settlement could be seen as a win-win for both the parents and their children.
Charlie Sheen – $55,000 Per Month
When it comes to expensive celebrity child support payments, Charlie Sheen tops the list. The Two and a Half Men star pays a whopping $55,000 per month in child support for his twin sons with ex-wife Brooke Mueller.
After a bitter custody battle, Sheen was ordered to pay $55K per month, along with other expenses like school costs, extracurricular activities, and nannies until the boys turn 18. That amounts to over $660,000 per year and over $12 million total over 18 years for two children. Talk about living the high life!
Sheen can undoubtedly afford it with his lucrative TV career and various business ventures. But for the average Joe, shelling out $55,000 a month in child support seems unfathomable. Most people earn that or less in an entire year of full-time work. However, California law aims to maintain a child’s lifestyle after divorce, and Sheen’s children were accustomed to an affluent standard of living.
While some argue the amount is excessive, others say Sheen has a responsibility to provide well for his children. At the end of the day, the wellbeing and financial security of his sons are what really matters. Love them or hate them, you have to give Sheen credit for stepping up to take care of his kids. For two lucky boys, it pays – quite literally – to have Charlie Sheen as your dad.
Russell Simmons – $40,000 Per Month
When hip hop mogul Russell Simmons and ex-wife Kimora Lee Simmons divorced in 2006 after 8 years of marriage, Russell was ordered to pay $40,000 per month in child support for their two daughters, Ming Lee and Aoki Lee. At the time, Russell’s net worth was estimated at over $100 million, so $40,000 was a drop in the bucket for the co-founder of Def Jam Recordings.
However, in the years since, Russell’s wealth has taken a massive hit. He left Def Jam in 1999 and his other business ventures struggled. In 2018, over a dozen women accused Russell of sexual assault and harassment, damaging his reputation. He stepped down from his companies and his net worth plummeted to under $10 million.
In light of his financial troubles, Russell petitioned the court in 2019 to lower his monthly child support payments for Ming Lee and Aoki Lee, who were now 15 and 12 years old. The presiding judge ended up cutting Russell’s payments in half to $20,000 per month. While still a sizable amount, it provided some relief for Russell as he worked to rebuild his wealth and image.
Russell and Kimora’s costly divorce and child support arrangement serves as a cautionary tale for other celebrities and high net worth individuals. Even if you have substantial assets at the time of divorce, financial circumstances can change dramatically over the course of a decade or more. It pays to consider worst-case scenarios when negotiating spousal and child support, to avoid ending up with payments that become unsustainable if your income or net worth take a hit down the road.
Of course, the most important thing is providing for any children you share custody of. But there is an argument to be made for structuring support in a way that is fair to both parties over the long run, accounting for the possibility of unforeseen financial hardship. For Russell Simmons, his once enviable income and lifestyle ultimately came back to bite him, all in the name of responsible parenting and doing right by his family.
Nas – $11,000 Per Month
Nas, the famous American rapper, pays his ex-wife Kelis an insane $11,000 per month in child support for their son Knight. Nas and Kelis were married from 2005 to 2010, and Knight was born in 2009.
When the couple divorced, Kelis was awarded custody of Knight, and Nas was ordered to pay $51,000 per month in spousal and child support. The spousal support ended in 2015, but Nas is still on the hook for $11,000 per month in child support until Knight turns 18. At the time of the ruling, Nas’ lawyer claimed he couldn’t afford to pay that much. However, Nas has sold over 25 million albums worldwide and has amassed a fortune of $60 million, so $11,000 per month seems reasonable given his immense success and wealth.
To put that into perspective, $11,000 per month is $132,000 per year, which is more than double the average American family’s income. Knight is living an extremely privileged lifestyle thanks to his dad’s generous support. Nas clearly wants the best for his son and is willing to provide him every opportunity in life.
While the amount seems staggering, it’s all relative. For a celebrity of Nas’ stature, $11,000 per month is a drop in the bucket, especially considering how much other celebrities pay for child support. Nas got off easy compared to some other stars. For the average person though, $11,000 per month in child support would be an unfathomable amount.
Nas may have complained about the payments at first, but he’s actually getting a good deal. His son will want for nothing, and when Knight turns 18, Nas will have the freedom to spend his money however he chooses. For now though, Nas remains on the hook for $11,000 per month.
Ludacris – $15,000 Per Month
Ludacris, the famous rapper and actor, pays $15,000 per month in child support for his daughter Karma. Ludacris had Karma with an ex-girlfriend named Christine White in 2001.
Even though Ludacris and Christine were never married, the court still ordered Ludacris to pay child support. The amount of $15,000 per month was decided based on Ludacris’ income and ability to provide for his daughter. At the time, Ludacris was making millions from his successful music career and various business ventures.
Ludacris also has custody of Karma and she lives with him primarily. The child support is meant to ensure Christine is still able to provide for Karma’s needs when she is staying with her. The amount is fairly typical for a celebrity of Ludacris’ stature and is meant to maintain the standard of living Karma has become accustomed to.
Some other details related to Ludacris’ payment:
- Ludacris’ payment is on the higher end for standard child support. The national average is around $430 per month.
- Child support payments are meant to benefit the child’s wellbeing and standard of living. They are not meant to punish the paying parent.
- Ludacris also pays for Karma’s education, medical insurance, extracurriculars and anything else she may need. The child support payment is meant to specifically help with essentials like food, clothing and housing.
- Child support typically lasts until the child turns 18 years old, however, in some cases it can continue up to age 21 if the child remains in school.
Ludacris wants the very best for his daughter and, as one of the highest paid rappers, is in a position to provide her a very comfortable life. His substantial child support payment, along with fully providing for all of Karma’s other needs, demonstrates his commitment to taking care of his child, regardless of his relationship with her mother.
Brendan Fraser – Owes $900k Total to Ex-Wife Afton Smith
Brendan Fraser knows a thing or two about expensive divorce settlements. His ex-wife, Afton Smith, was awarded $900,000 per year in alimony and child support for their three sons. According to court documents, Fraser pays $300,000 in spousal support and $50,000 for each of his children’s financial needs.
While $900k annually may seem outrageous, at the height of his career, Fraser was one of Hollywood’s highest paid actors. Unfortunately, a string of box office flops and health issues caused his income to plummet. Despite this, the court refused to reduce his payments leaving Fraser in dire financial straits.
Forced to take any role offered to pay the bills, Fraser’s acting jobs are now a far cry from the big budget blockbusters that made him a star. Known for films like The Mummy franchise, George of the Jungle, and Crash, Fraser was once able to command $15 million per movie.
His situation serves as a cautionary tale for celebrities and the non-famous alike. When it comes to divorce, it’s important to make sure any financial settlement is fair and realistic. While Smith was certainly entitled to a generous agreement after over 15 years of marriage, the court’s refusal to revisit the ruling has had devastating consequences for Fraser.
Many feel the system failed to take his changed circumstances into account. At 50, Fraser is still paying through the nose while struggling to revive his career and provide for his current family. For those looking to avoid a similar fate, the moral of this story is: get a good lawyer, think long and hard before signing anything, and if your situation changes in the future, don’t hesitate to petition the court for an adjustment. No one, not even a movie star, deserves to be saddled with payments they have no hope of making.
Christiano Ronaldo $230,000
After his divorce from Irina Shayk, soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo was ordered to pay $230,000 per month for the care of their son. This adds up to $2.7 million each year, making it one of the highest amounts for a single child.
When director James Cameron divorced Linda Hamilton, he was required to pay $50 million—the highest amount ever awarded by a court at the time. This went towards supporting their daughter through her college years.
Following their notoriously messy divorce, real estate mogul Mohamed Hadid was ordered to pay his ex-wife Yolanda Hadid $10,000 per month for each of their three children, totaling $360,000 annually. On top of that, he had to cover additional costs like private school tuition, vacations, and extracurriculars.
Kanye West, owes ex-wife Kim Kardashian an unparalleled $200,000 a month in child support according to court documents from their divorce settlement.
Alex Rodriguez has reportedly been paying approximately $115,000 a month between child and spousal to his ex-wife Cynthia Scurtis. In October 2018, however, A-Rod reportedly took Scurtis back to court, seeking to lower his monthly dues now that he’s not earning nearly what his salary was before retiring from baseball.
In 2001, The 53year old Sean “Puff Daddy” Combs began paying nearly $20,000 a month in child support to Kim Porter for their son Christian, who was three at the time. Combs was ordered to pay until his son turned 21.
The 49 year Old Football star Terrell Owens has four different children with four different women and has to pay child support that totals $45,000 for all of them.
Even though he’s worth about $250 million, Tom Cruise only has to pay $33,000 to Katie Holmes in child support for their daughter Suri. On top of that, Cruise only has to pay until 2024, when Suri turns 18, and then he no longer has to. However, Cruise is also required to pay for Suri’s expenses, including medical, dental, insurance, education, college, and other extracurricular costs.