Actress Lisa Kudrow lost her court battle with her former manager and has been ordered to pay $1.6 million. In 2008, Kudrow’s former manager filed a lawsuit against the actress for breach of contract claiming he was still owed his 10 percent share of the residuals that Kudrow received from her time on the “Friends” series and other projects she worked on during their association. Kudrow’s attorneys claimed that as her manager, he was not entitled to the commissions normally paid to agents. The jury ruled in favor of the manager in a 10-to-2 decision.
Kudrow’s business relationship with her manager began in 1991 and lasted until 2007. During that time, Kudrow was hired to play Phoebe on the hit television sitcom. Her initial salary was $13,500 per episode, but it dramatically increased over the years until reaching a salary of $1 million per episode during the show’s final season.
According to Kudrow’s attorney, this judgement is just the first step in the process and that the actress intends to push the result all the way up to the appellate level. In many states such as North Carolina, the appeals process could take a significant amount of time. However, both parties remained confident that their side would obtain a favorable ruling.
When the terms of a contract become contentious, it may be beneficial to have an attorney review the terms of the agreement. An attorney familiar with business disputes may be able to help clients understand their obligations concerning a contract and might be able to represent their interests in any disputes that are be taken to court.
Source: ABC News, “‘Friends’ Star Lisa Kudrow Loses $1.6 Million Lawsuit“, Michael Rothman, February 26, 2014