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Kelly Clarkson Demands Ex-Husband Brandon Blackstock Cough Up $5 Million to Appeal 7-Figure Judgment Over ‘The Voice’ Commissions

Kelly Clarkson and her ex-husband, Brandon Blackstock, were married for nearly seven years before splitting in June 2020.

Clarkson and Blackstock have continued to duke it out in court — in the months after he was ordered to pay the talk show host $2.6 million.

According to court documents obtained by, Clarkson asked that Blackstock not be allowed to move forward with his appeal of the judgment until he forks over a $5.2 million bond.

Clarkson and Blackstock were married from 2013 until they split in 2020. For 13 years, Blackstock served as the entertainer’s manager and collected commissions from his wife.

Blackstock worked for his father Narvel’s company Starstruck Management Group. Clarkson signed to the Nashville-based company in 2007. Per their agreement, Clarkson was to pay 15% commission on her gross earnings.

Following the breakup, Starstruck sued Clarkson over $1.4 million allegedly owed in commissions. The management company claimed Clarkson stopped paying commissions owed for The Kelly Clarkson Show and The Voice.

Clarkson then filed a petition with the California Labor Commission. Due to the petition being filed, Starstruck’s lawsuit was put on pause until a determination was made by the Labor Commissioner.

In Clarkon’s petition, she accused her estranged husband of defrauding her by overcharging her. She claimed he was never licensed to serve as a talent agent — and demanded he be ordered to pay back commissions.

At the time, Starstruck’s powerhouse attorney Bryan Freedman said about Clarkson’s petition, “The labor petition conveniently ignores the fact that Kelly had her own licensed talent agency CAA at all times. While Starstruck Management Group provided talent management services on her behalf, it did so at all times that CAA was her agency of record.”

In November 2023, the California Labor Commission ruled in favor of Clarkson. It determined Blackstock should not have booked gigs without a talent agent license.

Blackstock was ordered to pay back $2.6 million in commissions — $1.9 million for The Voice, $208k for a Norwegian Cruise Line deal, $450k for a Wayfair endorsement contract, and $93.30 for the Billboard Music Awards.

Blackstock and Starstuck filed an appeal of the decision.

In addition, Blackstock and Starstruck filed a petition in Los Angeles Superior Court that asked for a trial “de novo” — which asked for a trial where the LA judge could hear the case and decide if they agreed with the labor commission’s ruling.

Now, the parties are back in the original lawsuit filed by Starstuck fighting over a series of issues.

Starstruck said the court ruled the lawsuit was no longer on pause after the Labor Commission ruling. The company said Clarkson has opposed a trial date being set in the civil lawsuit and any discovery taking place.

The company said the court should combine the “de novo” trial and the civil lawsuit into one matter.

Starstruck said Clarkson also opposed live testimony or examination of witnesses at the de novo trial. They said the singer wanted it to be based solely on transcripts from the Labor Commissioner proceeding and “declarations from witnesses who did not testify in the underlying proceeding.”

“Given the complexities of this case and the amount in controversy in the de novo trial (over $2.6 million), the Starstruck Parties should be able to take discovery,” the motion read. “This is especially so given that the Labor Commissioner proceeding was a summary proceeding without formal discovery. While the parties were able to obtain some documents through subpoenas in the Labor Commissioner proceeding, the parties should not be limited to those documents.”

In response, Clarkson asked the LA judge to keep the matters separate. She said the appeal of the Labor Commissioner’s decision should be heard BEFORE the civil lawsuit proceeds.

Clarkson said if she prevails on the Appeal, the suit “for management fees will be moot, as managers who violate the Talent Agencies Act are prohibited from collecting commissions for employment that they unlawfully procured for the artist.”

In her filing, Clarkson said per the Labor Code, any award issued by the Labor Commissioner can only be “stayed” or put on pause, Starstruck and Blackstock would need to post a bond “approved by the superior court in a sum not exceeding twice the amount of the judgment.”

Clarkson asked that Starstruck and Blackstock be ordered to post a bond of $5,282,746 “to stay” her award against Starstruck and its principals — and to move forward with the appeal,.

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