Erika Jayne has been hit by a new lawsuit that could leave the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star on the hook for $5 million in damages.
Radar Online has obtained documents that reveal that Erika and her estranged husband, Thomas Girardi, are being sued by the Law Office of Philip R. Sheldon and the law firm of Robert P. Finn. The lawyers were originally taking legal action against the attorney but have now added the reality star to their case. The lawsuit accuses the duo of breach of contract and fraud. The plaintiffs claim that they had referred thousands of cases to Girardi and his firm, Girardi Keese, “pursuant to an agreement to share in the attorneys’ fees paid when the cases settled.”
The two attorneys who filed the suit are “are both seniors who devoted the twilight years of their careers to working on these cases with the promise and expectation that they would have the resources necessary to retire once Girardi paid them for the services they performed.”
The lawyers accuse Girardi of hiding funds and refusing to pay them what they’re owed as outlined in the deal.
They claim that “Girardi embezzled and redirected the funds to family members, friends, partners, lenders, and creditors, and used the money to fund outrageously lavish lifestyles for himself and his wife Erika Jayne, who is better known as one of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.”
The legal docs state—“To avoid paying Plaintiffs the amounts owed, Girardi and his firm “loaned” millions of dollars to Girardi’s wife, and then filed a sham “divorce” to fraudulently keep the money from Plaintiffs and other vulnerable victims.”
Girardi’s son-in-law, David Lira, is also named as a defendant in the case. Lira worked for Girardi as a lawyer in his firm, and his name has been noted in a separate ongoing case involving the disgraced lawyer.
As previously reported—In a class action federal case, firm Edelson PC accused the couple of embezzling settlement funds for families of the victims of Lion Air Flight 610, a crash that killed 189 people, in 2018. The law firm accused the couple of staging the split because they “are on the verge of financial collapse and locked in a downward spiral of mounting debts and dwindling funds.”
Lira claimed that he tried to get Girardi to pay the family members, but that his father-in-law refused. Erika has stayed tight-lipped about the ongoing case thus far. The embezzlement accusations exploded in the press shortly after Erika filed for divorce from Girardi after a 21-year marriage.
Erika’s assets are currently being investigated amid allegations that Tom and Girardi Keese fraudulently transferred funds to the reality star. Ronald Richards, the attorney hired to investigate the performer’s assets, suspects that the embattled lawyer moved more than $20 million to Erika’s company.
The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills airs on Wednesdays at 8 pm, ET, on Bravo.