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Katherine's New Lawyer to Estate: Let's Be Fair

4/15/2011 3:00 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Katherine Jackson has just hired a lawyer to repair the damaged relationship with the Michael Jackson Estate ...trying to unlock some of the money the Estate is raking in and give it to MJ's mom.

0205_katherine_jackson_EX
Katherine hired Perry Sanders, a big time litigator who, among other things, was pivotal in securing the publishing rights for the proper owners against Master P and the No Limit Records catalog.

Sanders tells TMZ ... he wants to work with MJ Estate lawyer Howard Weitzman to see if they can reach some sort of common ground.

As TMZ first reported, the Estate is already paying Katherine $26,000 a month.  In addition, the Estate has paid off the mortgage to the Jackson family home, bought her a car, hired a cook and paid for various vacations and other expenses.

Katherine and her people feel they haven't gotten enough dough, given that the Estate has made hundreds of millions of bucks since Michael's death.

For his part, Weitzman tells TMZ, "If Mr. Sanders is in fact Mrs. Jackson's new lawyer, I will be glad to talk to him."

291 COMMENTS

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91.

MJFan4Life    

I'm just about sick of this. The looney fans on twitter. It's like if you're a member of the Jackson family or just involved some way with the family, these looney fans worship you. It's pretty pathetic how these "fans" beg Tito, Jackie, Randy, Jermaine, Austin Brown, Titos kids, 3T to retweet them or follow them and all that BS.

I actually find it entertaining how they get sad when one of the Jacksons doesn't respond to their tweet or get really excited when they do. Half of these fans are kids or people who didn't give a crap about MJ until after he died.

Some people need to get a life. You all look like losers kissing up to the Jacksons and their kids, and their kids, kids. Even the Jacksons cousins. Fact is, none of you gave a damn about Michael or his family until after he died. Now you all wanna kiss the ass of Jaafar, Geneieve, Randy Jr., Donte (he's a adopted Jackson right?) I bet the Jacksons secretly laugh at you losers...

1288 days ago
92.

MJFan4Life    

I'm just about sick of this. The looney fans on twitter. It's like if you're a member of the Jackson family or just involved some way with the family, these looney fans worship you. It's pretty pathetic how these "fans" beg Tito, Jackie, Randy, Jermaine, Austin Brown, Titos kids, 3T to retweet them or follow them and all that BS.

I actually find it entertaining how they get sad when one of the Jacksons doesn't respond to their tweet or get really excited when they do. Half of these fans are kids or people who didn't give a crap about MJ until after he died.

Some people need to get a life. You all look like losers kissing up to the Jacksons and their kids, and their kids, kids. Even the Jacksons cousins. Fact is, none of you gave a damn about Michael or his family until after he died. Now you all wanna kiss the ass of Jaafar, Geneieve, Randy Jr., Donte (he's a adopted Jackson right?) I bet the Jacksons secretly laugh at you losers...

1288 days ago
93.

juney    

So Katherine Jackson fired Adam Streisand and hired Perry R. Sanders? There is no Perry Sanders listed in the California State Bar records; there is a Perry Sanders practicing in LA and CO, so he would have to petition for permission to enter any court appearances in California on behalf of Mrs. Jackson. Is this the same Perry Sanders who represents Notorious Big's mother against the police? Seems as if KJ has gone from reputable representation to something else ........ time will tell.....

1288 days ago
94.

a total fan    

The executors are getting paid what the law always. Katherine and the children are given an allowance until all the debts are paid then they will get their percentage. The Estate is a buisness now and the executors are running it the best they know how to secure Katherine and the children's future. All this take time. I just wish the charities were listed already.

1288 days ago
95.

JacksonLover    

I think Mrs Jakson is a tuly wonderful lady and anyone who know her will say the same she is a strong lady who is looking after her grandchildren the best way she can after the murder of her son Michael Jackson who gave the world the greatest music and was also the greatest entertainer in the world. Michael Jackson was the most beautiful person on the planet. RIP Michael we Love You More.

1288 days ago
96.

juney    

Perry R. Sanders is Katherine's new attorney? There's no Perry Sanders registered with the California State Bar. There's a Perry Sanders, Esq. in Colorado and Louisiana, would not special dispensation to handle California cases. Is this the same Perry Sanders repping BIG's mother in her civil case against the police? Just wondering who put Katherine in touch with this guy ..... out of the frying pan into the fire ..... Adam Streisand was a reputable attorney .....

1288 days ago
97.

Craig Valentino    

The real deal is that because of Michael's untimely death his "Brand" sky rocketed making his estate over 750 million dollars. The executors are only taking offers and closing the deals they are not out there hitting the pavement looking for and creating these deals. Mrs. Jackson was left with 40% of the Estate while she is alive and what she has gotten of 750 million dollars is a cook $186,000 a year a car and a few trips to Gary and her house paid off does not amount to 40% $750,000. This is not greed what she wants it's what Michael left to her by his own choice and she's not getting it. Michael had debt of 400 million in loans which Michael restructured months before he died and John Branca went in a did it again which did not need to be done and took 10% which is $40 million for himself. He has taken all of Michaels companies and put them in his name and now he personally controls and owns all of everything Michael worked for and guess who will get it all when John Branca dies? Jon Branca's wife and children. So yes Mrs. Jackson fight and fight hard for Michael's legacy to be executed fairly so that your family gets what you all have worked for since living in Gary, in with nothing!!! John Branca did indeed steal from Michael and he is now stealing everything. Look at the big picture people!!!

1288 days ago
98.

Right back at ya    

The Jackson Family moved into their Home on Hayvenhurst Ave, in Encino, forty-one years ago; with all the money the Family has made through the years, especially in the beginning, why didn't they think to pay-it-off, as soon as possible? WTH?

1288 days ago
99.

FlowerPower    

Michael Jackson's mom, estate, clash over charity
By ANTHONY McCARTNEY , 04.15.11, 03:19 PM EDT

LOS ANGELES -- "Heal the world. Make it a better place for you and for me." So sang Michael Jackson in his mega-selling 1992 anthem for change.

Now the singer's estate and Jackson's mother could use a little healing themselves as they fight each other over the non-profit Heal the World Foundation, which claims it's the successor to the pop star's defunct charity inspired by the song. At stake in the skirmish are trademarks worth millions of dollars and a piece of Jackson's legacy.

The dispute, which is playing out in a federal court in Los Angeles, is the latest example of the sometimes strained relationship between Jackson's family and the estate he left in place that has already earned hundreds of millions of dollars.

But the fight against the new incarnation of the Heal the World Foundation has also raised questions about which causes the singer would want to focus on if he hadn't abandoned his charity to fight off allegations of child sexual abuse.

His mother, Katherine Jackson, left little doubt about where her sentiments lie in a recent court filing: "It is not my desire, nor would it be the desire of my son Michael, to continue this lawsuit against Heal the World Foundation."

Last year, Jackson's mother and father joined Heal the World's board of directors and elected to have their three children added to a youth board. Jackson's mother and his children were prominently featured on a recent "Good Morning America" story that also included footage of Heal the World giving a $10,000 donation to a shelter in Los Angeles.

It was a high-profile plug for an entity that according to tax filings reviewed by The Associated Press has done little fundraising or charitable giving, but has fought to stake its claim to several Jackson-related trademarks and likeness rights that the singer's estate maintains it should own.

The estate did not immediately respond to requests seeking comment about how Katherine Jackson's support for Heal the World is impacting the case or the estate.

The foundation's director, Melissa Johnson, claims the pop singer handed her control of Heal the World through intermediaries in 2005, when he was defending himself against child molestation accusations. Despite never having personally met the singer, Johnson's attorneys claim she has the right to manage the charity, use various trademarks and that the permission now comes from the Jackson family itself.

The singer's estate counters that even if Michael Jackson granted Johnson rights to the charity, which it denies, the estate has revoked the permission and Johnson should be barred from using Jackson's name, likeness, and the name Heal the World for any future endeavors. The estate owns Jackson's likeness rights and numerous trademarks and copyrights that have been used to market new products since his June 2009 death.

"People are saying I have been manipulated by Melissa Johnson and that we are exploiting my grandchildren because we joined Heal the World, all while the executors convince people they are only doing what Michael wanted or what is in my best interests by suing everyone who help (sic) us," states Katherine Jackson's declaration, which was offered as sworn testimony in the case. "Please do not believe them. It's not true."

Complicating Katherine Jackson's involvement with the foundation is her business relationship with Howard Mann, a businessman who obtained some of Jackson's recordings years ago. Mann, who is paying to defend Heal the World in court, is also being sued by the estate in a separate lawsuit that accuses him of infringing on estate copyrights.

The singer's estate, which has paid millions in the nearly two years since the pop singer's death to support Katherine Jackson and her grandchildren, claims the organization is trying to supplant the trademarks and has no legitimate affiliation with the singer.

The estate won a preliminary injunction in April 2010, barring Heal the World Foundation from using Michael Jackson's name, likeness and trademarks on its website, but in recent weeks several of the pop singer's former confidantes and his mother have cast their support with Johnson.

The lawsuit has reignited division between Jackson's family and the overseers of his estate, namely co-executor John Branca. Branca was Jackson's longtime attorney, but did not work with him for several years until being re-hired shortly before the singer's death.

Since Mann's involvement in the Heal the World lawsuit, several former figures from Jackson's sphere signed statements saying they were aware Michael Jackson had given Johnson authority to run his charity. Among those expected to testify are attorney Brian Oxman, who was fired from Jackson's criminal defense team and now represents Jackson family patriarch Joe Jackson, and the singer's former manager and spokeswoman Raymone Bain. Bain sued Jackson before his death for $44 million dollars, claiming she was cut out of her share of the deal for the singer's planned series of comeback concerts titled "This Is It."

In written testimony, Bain stated she became aware of Johnson's actions in 2006 and that Michael Jackson told her that he had handed her the reigns of the foundation in 2005. Oxman claims Jackson told him to confer rights to the foundation to Johnson in 2005, but estate attorneys have cast doubt on the statement and say Oxman's name was never mentioned in years of correspondence from Johnson to Jackson's attorneys and representatives.

Johnson's attorney, Edgar Pease III, admits that there is no formal written agreement between Michael Jackson and Johnson regarding Heal the World. But he says the involvement of Jackson's mother and three children, who are entitled to 80 percent of the estate's earnings, means the foundation should have some legitimacy.

"The estate is suing their left foot," Pease said. "They're suing themselves."

He said Johnson's aim in applying for various trademarks was to preserve them for the charity and protect them from others. Tax records show in recent years, Johnson has not received a salary for her work on Heal the World Foundation, and in court filings claims she has spent tens of thousands of her own money to develop it.

Since Jackson's June 2009 death, there at times has been an uneasy relationship between the Jackson family and the estate. Michael Jackson's 2002 will calls for his mother and three children to receive 80 percent of his estate, with the final 20 percent designated for an unnamed charity.

Katherine Jackson had sought to challenge Branca and co-administrator John McClain's authority to run the estate in 2009, but dropped the bid.

In the meantime the estate has worked to repair major financial damage incurred by Michael Jackson during his lifetime. The "Thriller" singer died more than $400 million in debt, but in the first 17 months after his death earned more than $310 million, court records show.

More than $9 million has been paid to and for Katherine Jackson and her son's children. Nearly $4 million of that paid off the family's longtime home in the San Fernando Valley, with portions of the rest paying for security, staff and other expenses for the family.

For its part, the new incarnation of Heal the World Foundation spending has far outpaced its donations. Tax records for the nonprofit show that in 2009, the last year available, Heal the World, spent more than $76,000 in trademark and advertising fees. It handed out roughly $5,000 in donations.

In court filings, Johnson states she registered 1,800 website domain names and dozens of trademarks, which Pease said would give the foundation the basis it needs to fulfill Johnson's vision for the charity.

Pease claims Johnson came up with the idea for a Cirque-du-Soleil-style show featuring Jackson's work, as well as a telethon, television show, board game and other merchandise that would elevate Heal the World to a major charitable organization.

Jackson's estate is hoping next week's trial before U.S. District Court Judge Dolly Gee will end Johnson's efforts.

"The ultimate fact critical to this litigation remains, after over a year and a half of litigation, unchanged," the estate's attorney's wrote in a trial brief. "Defendants have infringed and will continue to infringe on (the estate's) intellectual property and Mr. Jackson's name, image and likeness to the fullest extent they are able to do so."

http://www.forbes.com/feeds/ap/2011/04/15/entertainment-u...

1288 days ago
100.

iFart    

jm50 about an hour ago
It is really disturbing reading some of these comments that come from stories that are planted for a purpose. First of all we are only given one little snippet of information from TMZ and then everyone begins to comment based on what is being fed by TMZ. We are never given all sides of any story so for people to judge Katherine or anyone is not fair. Michael Jackson worked his entire life to support his family. Whatever he spent ro whatever he did was his business. For whatever reason we only get all of this crap about Michael Jackson. What if TMZ began to post every extravagent expense Brad and Angelina made or any celebrity with the means to life a lifestyle not a one of us will ever understand. $26,000 a month to run a house of that size is nothing. This family gets lied about and torn to shreds constantly and it's really very sad.

These stories need to be looked at for what they are and what they are meant to do which is to enflame the reader one way or the other.

_______________________________________

I completely agree. Michael adored his mother...he left 40% of his estate to her for a reason. He would be disgusted by his own fans attacking and denigrating Katherine the way they are. Leave the family alone and let them grieve.

Love and miss you forever MJ.

1288 days ago
101.

Tara    


THE ESTATE HAS MADE HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS TO PAY OF MJs DEBT, AND TO PAY KATHERINE AND KIDS OVER 88K PER MONTH. THE REST BELONGS TO THE KIDS NOT KATHERINE.

THIS IS JOE JACKSON AND THE SIBLINGS USING HER TO TRY AND GET MJS MONEY.

Joe tried to pimp the kids into show biz on TV, Jackie "sweetly" take Prince to a basketball game, only to reveal to People Magazine he pimping his T-shirt line, by getting Prince to wear it.

The money belongs to Michael jackson's kids. IT'S THEIR MONEY NOT KATHERINES!!!

It's so obvious since MJ's death that it was his own family taking advantage of him!

If Jermaine didn't want to pay child support, and Mj wouldn't pay for him or help Jermaine's failing career, he dumped his and Tito's wife and kids on Katherine, knowing that was where MJ would always send money.
When Rebbies Daughter starts acting up, she dumps the kid on Katherine, again knowing that's the only way to MJs money. She she's beeen forced to take the kid back, she is now writting a book about her daughter being bi-polar. What a sweet mom - NOT

The Jackson's always saw Katherine as a way to MJ's money, and now they see his kids as a way to the money too.

The estate should step in an remove those kids, or at least, help Prince, who is now 14, become and independant adult, so he doesn't have to deal with the family hounding him all the time and he can have a say in HIS money.

I love how these kids have $60...k per month in care, Katherine gets 28K/mnth, and her home is paid for, and still the kids rarely have new clothes.

The kids are growing up fast, and the jackson's are scrambling to get that money before the kids grow up. Latoya can't stop talking about the kids private moments and anything sensational to get paid to be on a talk show. Jermaine wants us all to hate the estate and accuse them of murder because heaven forbid, they won't give him money to continue sitting on his ass.

Advise to Paris Prince and blanket - RUN as soon as you're old enough to!

1288 days ago
103.

Tara    

@ Craig Valentino
NO - Branco is not going to take all of MJs money. He is overseeing the estate, it doesn't mean he owns it. He has to show where all the money goes, and the kids will get that money when they're old enough.

1288 days ago
104.

Tara    

Wonder how hard Joe slapped her to try go after the estate.

They're trying to get MJs debt paid down, and stop MJs money, from going to Alexandraho and kids, and the lazy siblings.

1288 days ago
105.

Kathy    

Go watch the phantom of the opera video a few paces up and you will get your daily dose of the beautiful Michael Joe Jackson. "It's All For Love. L.O.V.E."

1288 days ago
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