Simon Cowell avoids American divorce court appearance

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Simon Cowell has avoided a court date in the US, after Lauren Silverman, the woman who is reported to be carrying his baby, settled her divorce case.

The X Factor judge had been named in legal papers as a co-respondent, meaning there was a possibility he would have had to give evidence.

A statement from Ms Silverman's lawyers said: "The matter has been resolved and the parties have moved on."

Cowell has not commented on the divorce proceedings.

It has been reported for several weeks that he and Ms Silverman are expecting a child, although neither has confirmed the story.

According to tabloid newspapers in the US, Ms Silverman's husband, real estate developer Andrew Silverman, started divorce proceedings after the affair came to light.

If Cowell had been forced to give evidence in the case, legal experts in the US say he would probably have been asked questions about his relationship with Ms Silverman, the possible role it played in her marriage break-up and the state of his finances.

The Silvermans, who were due to celebrate their 10th wedding anniversary later this year, have a seven-year-old son.

The divorce was settled out-of-court for his sake, Andrew Silverman said in a statement.

"As I've said all along, my priority was resolving this quickly for the sake of our son," he said.

"Lauren and I both love him very much and I'm looking forward to starting a new chapter in our lives. Hopefully people will respect our family's privacy."

At an X Factor press conference in Los Angeles earlier this month, Cowell refused to comment on his alleged impending fatherhood.

"I haven't read the newspapers," he told reporters. "Did I miss anything?"

He added: "Unfortunately I have to keep this, for the moment, private. It's just one of those things. Thank you very much anyway."

"There [are] a lot of things I will eventually clear up when the time is right, but I really have to be sensitive because there's a lot of people's feelings involved here."

Last week, the music and TV mogul was named the best-paid TV personality in the US by Forbes magazine, earning an estimated $95 million (£61m) last year.

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