Still Miss Independent — and Miss Clarkson! Kelly Clarkson spoke out after Us Weekly obtained documents requesting her legal name change to “Kelly Brianne,” noting her professional name isn’t going anywhere.
“I just got divorced, so I had to drop my married last name. I just kept my middle name for my personal life. I’m still Kelly Clarkson,” the 39-year-old musician told PEOPLE (the TV Show!) on Monday, March 21. “I don’t think I can change Clarkson at this point. I’m 20 years in!”
According to the legal paperwork filed by Clarkson in February, the American Idol alum said she had a “desire” to go by her first and middle names because “my new name more fully reflects who I am” amid her split from Brandon Blackstock. While their divorce was finalized earlier this month, a hearing regarding Clarkson’s name is set for March 28.
The Kelly Clarkson Show host filed for divorce from the talent manager, 45, in June 2020 after six years of marriage. The pair share daughter River, 7, and son Remington, 5. In their divorce docs obtained by Us earlier this month, the singer was granted primary custody of their two children, but River and Remington will stay with their dad one weekend a month in Montana or whenever he is in Los Angeles, where Clarkson resides.
“It’s tough,” the “Breakaway” singer admitted about coparenting during a February 2021 episode of her talk show. “I know with me and Brandon, it’s just a difficult thing because we’re in different places, and it’s like, we both agree on the main things, but it’s a hard thing when you’re not together all the time, for me personally. … As long as you make sure it’s about the children and their best interests, then we’re both on board.”
In addition to paying Blackstock $45,601 a month in child support, Clarkson will give her ex spousal support of $115,000 monthly until January 2024 — plus, a one-time, tax-free fee of more than $1.3 million. Blackstock currently pays the costs of maintaining their Montana ranch, where he lives and owes a 5.12 percent share of.
As far as how Clarkson is coping post-divorce, a source told Us that she has “entered the dating world,” adding, “It’s hard for Kelly to find time for romance with her schedule, but her friends are still into setting her up.”
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