In a heated courtroom battle, actor Kevin Costner and his estranged wife, Christine Baumgartner, are currently embroiled in a legal dispute over child support payments as they navigate their divorce proceedings. Costner's legal team has accused Baumgartner of launching a relentless attack on the actor's character, referring to it as a "relentless 'jihad'" aimed at creating animosity between the parties involved. In response, Baumgartner has formally requested a judge to set a new monthly child support payment, which currently stands at $161,592.
During the court hearing, Baumgartner's lawyer, John Rydell, argued that Costner, as a major movie star, has the financial means to afford the increased child support amount. Rydell estimated that even after paying the additional amount, Costner would still be left with approximately $731,000 per month after taxes, thanks to his earnings from the hit show "Yellowstone." However, Costner's legal team questioned Baumgartner's intentions, pointing out that it remains unclear what specific expenses she intends to cover with the additional $31,837 she is requesting.
While on the witness stand, Baumgartner became emotional, shedding tears as she claimed that she would not be able to find a rental home comparable to the former couple's vacation homes, including an Aspen property that holds sentimental value for her. Costner's legal team also accused Baumgartner of receiving $20,000 from a "boyfriend," which she confirmed during her testimony. However, she clarified that the person in question, Joshua Connor, is a longtime friend rather than a romantic partner. Baumgartner explained that she had received the money from Connor, with whom she had taken trips to Hawaii earlier in the year.
Adding to the contentious nature of the proceedings, Costner's legal team accused Baumgartner of refusing to comply with discovery requests and called for monetary sanctions as a deterrent for any future abuse of the discovery process. They argued that Baumgartner's actions were without substantial justification and labeled her rhetoric as "gameplaying."
The courtroom battle between Costner and Baumgartner is expected to continue in November, as the former couple discusses the validity of their premarital agreement. The ongoing divorce proceedings have taken a toll on both parties, with their personal lives and children's needs exposed publicly. The case has been described as “nasty” and is likely to continue for the foreseeable future, causing further discomfort for the family and the small community they reside in.
Christine Baumgartner filed for divorce from Kevin Costner in May after 18 years of marriage, citing irreconcilable differences. Initially requesting $248,000 per month, Baumgartner was awarded $129,755 in monthly support for their three children during a July hearing. Costner, on the other hand, had offered $51,000.