The Law Offices of Van A. Schwab
Skokie and Libertyville

Oprah's stepmother argues over eviction from home during divorce

Former talk-show host Oprah Winfrey has become embroiled in a complex divorce case between her father and her stepmother that now also involves her stepsister as well as a small child. The conflict came about when Oprah's stepsister and the woman's 5-year-old daughter received notice that the trust that owns their home was seeking to evict them. The trust is funded by Oprah Winfrey and is called the Phoenix Trust II.

Oprah's stepmother has expressed her anger at the star's treatment of the two. The stepmother claims that her daughter has recently graduated from college and has just begun a new job. She states that Oprah is the one with the "money and power" and that her behavior makes her appear to be a "bully." Oprah's stepmother said she has been unable to contact her.

The stepmother also requested, as part of the divorce action, that Oprah's father be required to pay household expenses for their marital home, but he claims that his net income is only $282 per month after expense and cannot afford to do so. That home is also owned by a trust that is part of Oprah Winfrey's financial holdings.

Complicated divorce cases involving third-party ownership of property, trust-administered assets and other legal issues can be difficult to understand. An individual facing such a divorce often benefits from the advice of a divorce attorney who can explain the best strategies for division of assets and other issues that may arise in the course of the case.

Source: The Tennessean, "Oprah's trust presses for eviction in Vernon Winfrey divorce," Kevin Walters, Oct. 30, 2012

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