A disagreement between Powerball winner Jack Whittaker and his ex-wife, Jewell, over the division of business assets in their divorce settlement has reached the state's highest court.
The state Supreme Court on Tuesday reversed a December decision by Raleigh Circuit Court regarding the equitable division of a company owned by Jack, who now lives in Rocky Gap, Va.
Jewell, a Beckley resident, filed the appeal with the high court in January.
Jack, already a self-made millionaire with several contracting and construction companies, won the $315 million Powerball jackpot on Christmas Day 2002. He ended up with $93 million after taxes when he opted for the $170 million lump sum.
Three years after the big win, his wife filed for divorce. It was finalized in April 2008, ending nearly 42 years of marriage.
A few months after the divorce was finalized, Jack filed an appeal with Raleigh Circuit Court regarding a family court order dividing their marital assets, specifically Whittaker LLC. According to the Secretary of State's website, the Mount Hope-based company handles real estate and rental properties.
Raleigh Circuit Court reversed the family court's decision in August 2008, finding that the lower court had exceeded its jurisdiction by ordering the distribution of assets of the company. The issue was sent back to family court for further proceedings.
The two came to an agreement in November 2008 in family court regarding the division of assets.
But in January 2009, Jewell filed a petition requesting a judge find Jack in contempt, claiming he failed to convey certain properties and assets to her as he had agreed.
Raleigh Family Court issued an order in March 2009 finding Jack in contempt. He then filed an appeal in circuit court. The court held a hearing in November 2009 and issued a final order in December reversing family court's March contempt order and the November 2008 distribution order.