Three years after Blackstock, 66, and Starstruck Management Group sued the “Miss Independent” singer, 41, for unpaid commissions and breach of contract in September 2020 — to which she countersued two months later — the California Labor Commissioner’s Office exclusively confirmed to Us Weekly on Tuesday, June 20, that the “hearing is still ongoing.” However, they noted that “post-hearing briefs are due June 27” and that “a decision will be issued in the fall.”
A post-hearing brief is the last chance for both parties in a lawsuit to advocate their case based on what came out during previous hearings.
The former family members’ legal issues began not long after Clarkson filed for divorce from Narvel’s son, Brandon Blackstock, after nearly seven years of marriage in June 2020. That September, Starstruck — who represented the Grammy winner from 2007 to 2020 — sued Clarkson, claiming she owed $1.4 million in unpaid commission for her work on The Voice and her talk show, The Kelly Clarkson Show.
The lawsuit also alleged that the Texas native — who shares daughter River, 9, and son Remington, 7, with Brandon — breached a verbal contract with the company negotiated by her attorney and business manager 13 years prior, and that she would owe the firm at least $5.4 million by the end of 2020.
Clarkson filed her own countersuit against Starstruck Management Group in November 2020. According to court documents obtained by People at the time, the “Since You’ve Been Gone” singer claimed the firm violated the California Labor Code by “procuring, offering, promising, or attempting to procure employment or engagements,” all without being properly licensed.
Her countersuit also stated that Starstruck violated the Talent Agencies Act by ignoring legal “licensing requirements,” and argued that all past agreements between her and the firm — including the 13-year-old verbal agreement — should be “declared void and unenforceable.”
However, the company’s attorney, Bryan Freedman, pointed out to People in November 2020 that Clarkson’s countersuit “conveniently ignores the fact that Kelly had her own licensed talent agency [Creative Artists Agency] at all times.”
He continued: “While Starstruck Management Group provided talent management services on [Clarkson’s] behalf, it did so at all times that CAA was her agency of record. It is unfortunate that Kelly is again attempting to avoid paying commissions that are due and owing to Starstruck to try and achieve some perceived advantage in her ongoing custody and divorce proceedings.”
The “Walk Away” singer was granted primary custody of her and Brandon’s two children in November 2020, with the producer receiving visitation rights on multiple weekends per month. Nearly two years later, the estranged exes settled their messy divorce battle. Per the settlement, Clarkson had to pay Brandon a one-time amount of $1.3 million, in addition to paying $45,600 per month in child support. She must also pay him $115,000 monthly in spousal support until 2024.
Clarkson recently revealed that she began going to therapy amid her and Brandon’s marriage difficulties and said seeing a mental health professional was a “really good turning point” for her following their separation.
“They give you so many tools for how to navigate certain situations,” she told ET Canada on Monday, June 19. “Also to have somebody outside your circle that doesn’t know anything but just knows what’s happening in the now. And that was really helpful.”