Wendy Williams has been in an ongoing battle with her bank Wells Fargo over her access to millions of her hard-earned dollars — and it’s only getting messier.
As Perezcious readers know, word of money problems started to come to light when the talk show’s health was rapidly declining and she was absent from her now-canceled series. Initial reports claimed the bank had frozen Wendy’s accounts for fear of “dementia or undue influence,” suggesting she needed a professional to intervene. In February, it seemed like things were looking up for the former radio DJ since a court granted her a temporary restraining order against Wells Fargo. In doing so, the establishment was also required to un-freeze her accounts and give her access to all her statements. A big deal!
But everything got even more complicated this week with new allegations about another card and her son’s allegedly unauthorized involvement with it!
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On Tuesday, The US Sun reported Kevin Hunter Jr. was using his mother’s American Express card, spending $100,000 before the brokerage account was frozen in January. A source claimed he was “demanding that Wendy’s adviser pay the bill — instead of Wendy.” AKA he supposedly wanted Lori Schiller, Wendy’s former financial adviser (who is still embroiled in the legal matter), to front the bill!
Kevin Jr. quickly clapped back at the claims, telling the outlet:
“I vehemently deny any allegations of unauthorized use of my mother’s American Express card. This is a false narrative perpetuated to justify freezing her accounts.”
Now, the TV personality’s former attorney, LaShawn Thomas, is speaking to Page Six, defending Kevin Jr. and calling out the supposed real person to blame for this money issue! On Friday, LaShawn claimed the problems stem from the 58-year-old’s former financial adviser. LaShawn claims Lori is trying to “muddy the waters” by contributing to the supposedly false report about Kevin Jr., explaining:
“The real issue is that Wells Fargo, through their adviser, refused to grant Wendy access to her own accounts, this includes the right to check her balance.”
Insisting this was an unjust move made by the bank, LaShawn continued:
“No bank should have the authority to do that. No one attempted to gain access to any of Wendy’s accounts. The Wells Fargo adviser and [former manager Bernie Young] were the only people with access. … They left Wendy to die.”
It’s pretty shocking to think she couldn’t even check her balance! What’s the point of blocking her from those numbers??
Thomas went on to claim Wendy had no access to any of her funds — forcing her to use her AmEx for “all of her living expenses,” including flights to and from New York for doctor’s appointments, groceries, and more. Exactly the kind of spending that could rack up such a large bill over time! So, how did Kevin Jr. get involved?
According to the former attorney, the 22-year-old stepped in to help his mother “both mentally and physically with the assistance of a team of doctors” when her health declined. He’s been by her side making sure she gets taken care of, she continued:
“He coordinated all of her appointments, made sure she attended all appointments, cooked and cleaned for his mother. He absolutely loves his mother without question, and no one should place any blame or allegations of wrongdoing at his feet.”
Denying The US Sun’s report, Thomas added Lori and Wendy’s former manager, Bernie Young, were the only people to have access to her accounts — and if the Williams wanted to spend her cash, they had to get permission:
“Lori’s responsibility was to pay all of Wendy’s and Kevin Jr.’s bills. Kevin has always reached out to Lori for the payment of bills. If anyone (Wendy or Kevin) needed money, they had to contact Lori so that she could initiate payment.”
Hmm. It would make sense why Kevin Jr. was asking the financial adviser to pay off the $100k bill then!
But there’s more…
Page Six also learned the Ask Wendy author’s desire to buy Kevin Jr. a condo in Miami, Florida prompted the court-order guardianship to go into effect and coincided with her frozen accounts. A source told the outlet the celeb asked Lori to work out the details of a real estate purchase for her because the adviser allegedly promised to help her avoid commission fees. A month before Kevin Jr.’s lease was up (seemingly at the same property Wendy was trying to buy), he got a call from his landlord who claimed he never received an offer to purchase the place — and by that time, the price had increased by $250,000.
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LaShawn confirmed these claims to Page Six and added Kevin Jr. was told by the financial adviser she “could no longer speak with him without Wendy’s written authorization” because a verbal one was “no longer sufficient.”
In response, the momma asked to be taken to a local Wells Fargo where she tried to submit written authorization and power of attorney, but LaShawn claims the local branch manager “refused to accept” the power of attorney. Wendy and the branch manager called Lori, who was in charge, but she would only talk to Williams privately (including without her attorney) — something her legal rep doesn’t think was fair:
“The right to counsel is a constitutional right that a financial institution does not have the freedom to curtail.”
LaShawn claimed Lori eventually agreed to fly to Miami to meet with Williams over the matter but never turned up.
“Instead, [Schiller] locked Wendy out of all of her accounts. [Schiller] restricted all access to every single account. Wendy was even restricted from going to the bank and personally withdrawing funds… Wendy, a woman who has worked hard for her wealth, was left penniless.”
A representative for Wendy said she had no response when the outlet reached out. Publicist Shawn Zanotti did share:
“The real goal here is to help Wendy regain full and sole control of the assets that she has worked hard for the last 30 years of her life. We would appreciate if you give her time to heal.”
A spokesperson for Wells Fargo has denied any wrongdoing. Yeesh. So complicated. We hope Wendy can get this sorted out ASAP so she can focus on her health! Thoughts?
[Image via The Tonight Show/YouTube]