Love & Prenups: Trump's Marital History

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Love & Prenups: Trump's Marital History

There never seemed to be that one special woman in Donald Trump’s life for many years. Trump had focused on building his business empire, but along the way he met his first love. Since then, Trump has navigated three marriages, each with a prenuptial agreement, and two divorces, one of which referred to as “the divorce of the century.” Now that the Republican nominee is in the spotlight to a greater degree than ever before, more attention is coming back on to his marital history.

Here is a brief summary of The Donald’s marital history:

Ivana Zelnickova: “Divorce of the Century”

Trump met his first wife, Czech model Ivana Zelnickova, while she was in New York promoting the Olympic games. After dating for a few years, Trump married Ivana at age 30 on April 7, 1977. After they married, they had three children: Ivanka, Donald Jr., and Eric, who now all serve as executive vice presidents of The Trump Organization.

By 1990, Trump’s marriage with Ivana became troubled, as she became aware of an affair of his with actress Marla Maples. His affair with actress Marla Maples had become fuel for the tabloids and the couple filed for divorce. The lengthy scandal was named the “divorce of the century.”

The Trumps signed a divorce pact after Ivana challenged a prenuptial agreement that limited the divorce settlement to $25 million. Unfortunately for her, the challenge was unsuccessful. In the agreement, Trump had to pay her $14 million in cash, $350,000 in annual alimony and $300,000 per year for child support. Ivana was also given their mansion in Greenwich, CT and an apartment in the Trump Plaza.

In 1992, Trump sued Ivana for not honoring a gag clause in their divorce agreement and disclosing facts about him in a best-selling book. However, after the lengthy divorce proceedings, the two managed to reconcile and even remain friends today.

Marla Maples: Mistress Turned Wife

It wasn’t long after Trump ended his first marriage that he pursued his mistress, Marla Maples. Maples gave birth to Trump’s daughter Tiffany in October 1993 and shortly after the two tied the knot in December 1993. Marla and Trump’s marraige proceeded along until the Spring of 1996, when it emerged that Marla and her bodyguard, Spencer Wagner, were found in questionable circumstances under a lifeguard stand on Ocean Ridge beach at 4 a.m.

The prenup had a four-year marriage clause and was activated by Donald within the allotted time. Unlike the first marriage, the couple formally separated before finalizing their divorce in June 1999. Maples walked away with just under $2 million in her prenup-enforced divorce settlement.

In 2013, Marla Maples began auctioning off items from her marriage to Trump. Later on that year, Maples appeared on “Oprah: Where Are They Now?” and made a statement that suggested she was still in love with Trump.

Melania Knauss: The Next First Lady?

In 1998, before Trump’s divorce was finalized, he was introduced to fashion model Melania Knauss at a party. Trump attempted to get her number but she did not give in easily – he had arrived at the party with another woman. Trump later sent his date to the ladies’ room so he could give Knauss his number. After returning from a modeling gig in the Caribbean, Knauss called Trump and they went on their first date. They were engaged in April 2004 and married January 22, 2005. The couple signed a prenuptial agreement and remain married.

Donald believes Melania would make a great First Lady, but will the rest of America agree? We may find out in November.

Disclaimer: The above is solely intended for informational purposes and in no way constitutes legal advice or specific recommendations.


About the author

Justin Lavelle

Justin Lavelle is the social media director and blogger for He is based out of Northern Virginia.