Unlike most 16-year-olds -- who scrape together money from their part time job to go halfsies with their parents on a used Ford Taurus -- "Modern Family" star Ariel Winter just picked up a brand new Mercedes ... and paid for it in full.
Winter hit up her local Mercedes dealer recently and scored a fully loaded C350, blacked out with the AMG package. We're told Ariel and her sister went in with the idea of getting something nice, but also responsible and safe.
Our sources tells us Winter's dad -- who only recently began siding with Ariel and her sister in their battle against Ariel's mom -- was there to help her sign the papers. Once the deal was closed, Ariel wired the full payment ... just north of $50,000. APR financing is for suckers!
And get this ... the guy in the photo, who sold Ariel the car, is former soap star/current car salesman Matt Borlenghi. The funny part is ... Ariel's mom sued him for defamation in 2012.
Probably not a coincidence.
My Broken Family Can't Be Fixed
3/11/2014 1:46 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
"Modern Family" star Ariel Winter says she will never have a relationship again with her mom and her older brother ... this according to one of her text messages.
The text -- obtained by TMZ -- was filed in Ariel's guardianship case. She was texting her older brother Jimmy who has sided with their mother in the battle over Ariel.
Ariel, who is now under the guardianship of her sister, wrote, "How dare you say you miss me ... if you really wanted to see anyone and cared, you'd do a 180."
And then she goes in for the kill: "I'm sorry, what we've been through can't be fixed."
Ariel's mom filed the document, trying to prove Ariel suffers from PAS -- Parental Alienation Syndrome -- and their family is being destroyed as a result of the guardianship.
GOOD GENES OR
3/2/2014 12:15 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Julie Bowen's beauty is a modern miracle!
Here's the then 26-year-old babe in the golf comedy "Happy Gilmore" back in 1996 (left) -- and 18 years later, the 43-year-old "Modern Family" mom earlier in the year in Sydney, Australia (right).
'Modern Family' Star
Boob Grabber Charged
2/20/2014 1:21 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF
The perv fan who groped "Modern Family" star Sarah Hyland's chest in Australia this week has been charged with assault with an act of indecency, TMZ has learned.
The 29-year-old man was arrested Tuesday outside a "Modern Family" after-party in Sydney. Hyland was posing with fans when he allegedly grabbed her breast.
23-year-old Hyland immediately left the event in tears while her security handled the creep.
Hyland was remorseful about bailing on the event, saying sorry to all the fans she, "didn't get to say hi to but I had to leave due to an inappropriate touch of a fan."
Ariel Winter's Mom
Gunning for Entire 'Modern Family' Cast
2/13/2014 1:13 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF
Ariel Winter's mom wants to drag the entire cast of "Modern Family" into a custody war ... trying to force them on the stand and tell the judge she's not a terrible mother.
Chrystal Workman wants a small village of witnesses to testify, including Ed O'Neill, Julie Bowen, Sofia Vergara, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Angela Gould and Diane Rodriguez.
Workman also wants ABC Network Prez Paul Lee and show producer Steve Levitan.
In all, Workman wants to call 83 witnesses.
And get this ... she doesn't have a lawyer so she would be grilling them herself.
If it happens ... Ariel will turn 18 before the trial is over. Thing is ... the judge has pretty much made it clear ... ain't gonna happen.
'Modern Family' Star Sarah Hyland
I've Been Ballin' Since I Was 5
1/30/2014 9:32 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
"Modern Family" star Sarah Hyland has been makin' BANK since she was 5 years old ... but the actress tells TMZ she's not an IDIOT when it comes to saving her cash.
FYI -- Hyland's first acting gig was playing Howard Stern's daughter in "Private Parts" ... and the money train's been rolling strong ever since.
But Hyland says she's making damn sure she doesn't end up broke ass broke ... like Hammer or Lindsay Lohan.
We're thinkin' the chick who plays Lily on Sarah's show should take notes.
Keep Your Hands Off My Money, Mommie Dearest
1/28/2014 12:50 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
"Modern Family" star Ariel Winter's mother got caught with her hand in the cookie jar ... allegedly breaking a court order by handling thousands of dollars worth of paychecks intended for her daughter.
Ariel's father Glenn Workman filed court docs claiming Chrystal Workman cashed one of Ariel's residual checks for $4,266.79 -- but here's the thing ... he's NOT accusing her of stealing the money.
According to the docs, Chrystal immediately deposited the money into an account for Ariel's production company. However, Ariel's dad says the 2012 agreement that gave him sole control of Ariel's finances prevents Chrystal from having anything to do with their daughter's earnings.
Glenn's worried Chrystal might have even fatter checks in her possession -- such as Ariel's "Modern Family" cheddar.
He's asking the court for a cease and desist order ... forcing her to hand over all checks, and blocking her from doing it again.
'Modern Fam' Star Ty Burrell
WITNESS in Surprise Lesbian Wedding!
12/31/2013 6:54 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
A surprise lesbian wedding broke out at a Utah bar co-owned by "Modern Family" star Ty Burrell ... but the actor didn't just stand around and watch, Ty actually PARTICIPATED in the ceremony, TMZ has learned.
Ty (who plays Phil Dunphy on the show) was hangin' out at Bar X in Salt Lake City on Friday where a group of pro-gay marriage supporters were celebrating the striking down of an anti-same sex marriage law.
During the party, one lesbian couple decided they were so excited ... they were going to GET MARRIED RIGHT THERE IN THE BAR ... and asked Ty if he would sign the marriage certificate as an official witness.
Of course, Ty obliged ... and the women -- one of whom posed for a pic with Ty (see above) -- took the plunge right there in the bar.
The sad part ... Ty was NOT ALLOWED to buy the couple a celebratory drink (employees in the bar tell us it's illegal for bar staff to buy patrons a drink in Utah).
Still, didn't seem to put a damper on the evening -- CONGRATS!!
Back In Court Fighting Mom
Now Dad's On My Side, Too
10/3/2013 12:18 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
"Modern Family" star Ariel Winter now says her father is taking HER side -- opposing her mother, Chrystal Workman, in the battle over Ariel.
Ariel says in court docs -- obtained by TMZ -- daddy Glenn is happy that her big sis Shanelle is Ariel's guardian. Up to this point Glenn sided with his estranged wife.
Ariel doesn't say why her dad has flip-flopped, but it's interesting ... he's not asking to become the responsible parent. He's happy that Shanelle has assumed that role.
There was a hearing today ... nothing set in stone, but the judge said when everyone goes to court to fight it out over who gets custody of Ariel ... his inclination is that Ariel should NOT be forced to testify, because she's a 15-year-old girl and forcing her on the stand could be psychologically detrimental.
Sofia Vergara vs. Alexa Vega
WHO'D YOU RATHER?
10/3/2013 11:00 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
It's a Colombian face-off!
Here's 41-year-old Colombian born and "Modern Family" star Sofia Vergara posing in a little black dress (left) -- and 25-year-old second generation Colombian and "Spy Kids" actress Alexa Vega in an equally little and equally black dress (right).
La pregunta es...
Ariel Winter's Mom
DUMPED By Lawyer
She's Too Difficult
10/2/2013 10:07 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Ariel Winter's mom now has a fool for a client -- herself -- because her lawyer just quit.
In legal docs, obtained by TMZ, attorney Roy Penuela says there's been a fundamental disagreement between him and Chrystal Workman ... so he wants out.
Chrystal is fighting to regain custody of the "Modern Family" star, who is now under the care of her older sister after claims of physical and emotional abuse.
Penuela says Chrystal has made it "unreasonably difficult" for him to do his job. He's also apparently pissed over attorney's fees.
Score one for Ariel.
'Modern Family' Star
Treads Lightly During
'Breaking Bad' Pilgrimage
9/28/2013 12:54 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
"Modern Family" star Jesse Tyler Ferguson went on a trip to "Breaking Bad" mecca this week ... and lucky for him Walter White wasn't home during his tour.
JTF was in New Mexico for a Tie the Knot event ... and got all fanboy in his spare time tweeting pics in front of all the famous TV show spots.
Oddly enough -- Jesse sorta looks like a younger version of present day Walt. Who looks like he's about to wreak major havoc on Albuquerque tomorrow.
Ugh ... why isn't it Sunday night at 9 o'clock yet?!?!?
Ariel Winter's Mom
I Want to Grill Ariel's Shrink
About Oral Sex Chat
9/24/2013 6:35 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Chrystal Workman says authorities falsely accused her of talking oral sex to her daughter, "Modern Family" star Ariel Winter -- and she wants to get to the bottom of the claims by putting Ariel's psychiatrist and her attorney on the hot seat.
In her latest legal filing, Chrystal says she wants her attorneys to depose the doc and lawyer in order to defend herself against allegations of sexual abuse she believes Ariel made against her.
According to the docs, 2 investigators from the Department of Children and Family Services interviewed Chrystal on June 19, 2013 -- and asked her if she ever had a conversation with Ariel regarding oral sex with her boyfriend.
In the papers, Chrystal also alleges the DCFS investigators asked if she'd ever given Ariel a very graphic demonstration regarding how to use Monistat 7.
We are paraphrasing, and heavily, because Chrystal's own words in the papers are just that graphic.
Chrystal claims DCFS cleared her of all the allegations of emotional, physical, and sexual abuse.
The upshot ... she now thinks she deserves the right to grill Ariel's attorney and psychiatrist as part of her defense.
The big thing standing in Chrystal's way, of course, is a little something called attorney-client privilege and physician-client privilege.