Few celebrities have been as publicly divisive in recent years as actor, Mel Gibson. Two years ago, the press leaked phone calls that Gibson made to his girlfriend, Oksana Grigorieva, in which the actor used racially and sexually loaded language. Many in the media pondered whether he had engaged in serious domestic violence.
Gibson and Grigorieva have also been involved in a heated custody battle over their daughter, Lucia, who was born in October, 2009. It took the couple nearly three years – most of the child’s life – to settle the bitter custody dispute. Gibson agreed to pay Grigorieva $750,000 over 5 years, in three payments; and the couple will share custody of Lucia. (That settlement amount is the same settlement Gibson made to resolve a previous child custody dispute with his ex-wife.)
Grigorieva can stay at Gibson’s home in Sherman Oaks until Lucia reaches 18-years-old, after which time, she and the actor will sell their home and put the proceeds from the sale into a trust fund for Lucia.
$750,000 over five years might not seem like a bad settlement. But Grigorieva was anything but happy with the arrangement. She was so angry, in fact, that she subsequently sued her attorneys for (in her opinion) negligently telling her to sign a quick claim deed. (This document prevents her from pursuing other legal action, at the risk of jeopardizing her financial settlement.)
Whether or not Grigorieva’s suit against her attorneys has merit, her complaint brings up a key lesson: find the right attorney for you, before you get involved in negotiations. Take your time. Retain a California family lawyer who has a track record of consistent, ethical, effective service.
Find out more about the team at Dinnebier & Demmerle here on our website, or call us today to get the legal services you and your family need.