Donald Jr. and Vanessa had their first divorce hearing on Thursday and are close to getting the split finalized. The couple seemed to work out questions of child custody during the hearing, but some additional issues remained. Reports indicate that "financial conflicts" must be resolved before Don Jr. and Vanessa's divorce is finalized.
Norman Heller, Don Jr.'s lawyer, said he hoped that these conflicts could be settled quickly because there were "only a few issues left." State Supreme Court Justice Michael Katz told the couple that he could "help resolve those issues" and "bridge any of those gaps."
It's not clear exactly what the financial conflicts are, but they seem to be the reason that their divorce is listed as contested after originally being uncontested. This label doesn't mean that Don Jr. is trying to stop Vanessa's filing altogether, but rather that they don't yet agree on all of the terms of the split.
It's possible that the disagreement centers on the enormous windfall that Vanessa recently inherited from an investment her late father made in Rao’s Speciality Foods. Page Six called the fortune "life changing." In May, a report in The New York Daily News found that Don Jr. was looking into how much money Vanessa was getting from the investment.
It's unlikely that he'll have claim to any of the inheritance — as a divorce attorney told PEOPLE, the "money you get from third parties directly is not included in a marital pot" — but that figure is still an important piece of information about Vanessa's assets. The couple's individual net worths will help the court figure out how much they should each pay in child support, for example.
Besides these unresolved financial issues, the divorce appears to be proceeding smoothly. USA Today reports that Don Jr. and Vanessa seemed "relaxed," even smiling several times in court on Thursday, and that Justice Katz praised them for their adept handling of custody concerns.
"I very much would like to commend both of you for working out whatever differences you may have had regarding those issues and committing to co-parenting with each other," said Katz. "You have prioritized your children and taken steps to shield them from what could have been an invasive litigation process. Not everyone is able to do that."
In a joint statement after their split was first announced in March, the couple said: "After 12 years of marriage, we have decided to go our separate ways. We will always have tremendous respect for each other and our families. We have five beautiful children together and they remain our top priority. We ask for your privacy during this time."
The reasons for their split are unclear, but a spokeswoman for Vanessa told Page Six, "Decisions that she and Don have made on their marriage have nothing to do with politics."