December 27, 2012 01:00 PM by Stephanie Gustafson
American Idol alum Jennifer Lopez may be on top of her game at the moment, but that doesn’t stop the celeb from having her down days. The latest drama unfolding in the singer’s life involves a complicated lawsuit against her former chauffeur. It’s hard to sum up such a legal mess, but it’s pretty obvious that the battle didn’t end well for JLo.
Jennifer Lopez’s latest legal battle began in April, when former driver Hakob Manoukian sued both JLo and her manager for wrongful termination and breach of contract. Manoukian alleged that Lopez failed to pay the previously agreed-upon annual salary of $72,000, as well as bonus compensation totaling over $200,000. Manoukian also accused Lopez of publicly humiliating him and demoting him from head of transportation to a mere driver for Los Angeles engagements.
Not to be outdone in court, Jennifer Lopez fought back with a $20 million countersuit. She accused Manoukian of demanding nearly $3 million and threatening to share secrets of the celeb’s private life if she didn’t pony up the money. This countersuit was recently dismissed under California’s anti-SLAPP law. Designed to prevent the defense from using the countersuit as a tactic for dropping the original case, the anti-SLAPP law made it possible for Manoukian’s team to request the dismissal of JLo’s countersuit.
So, what’s next? Manoukian’s case is still pending, but if he wins, Jennifer Lopez will be required to provide compensation for damages, overtime pay and legal fees. While this should not be unfeasible for a very successful celebrity, the ensuing blow to her reputation could potentially cause problems.
What do you think? Is this, as JLo’s manager claims, a simple case of a “disgruntled employee who chose to quit?” Or is Jennifer Lopez a less-than-ideal employer? Sound off in the comments section below!
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Photo Credit: E!