New Jersey child custody cases aren’t as well-known as those in the foothills of Hollywood. Well, for the most part. There was that whole “Baby M” issue. But, generally speaking, the child custody cases we hear about arise from the sun-drenched Hollywood Hills.
Celebrity gossip can be amusing to say the least. Don’t worry. You’re not alone in your guilty pleasure. But sometimes, unfortunately, children suffer at the hands of fortune, fame, and lost romance. Over the years, we’ve seen some of Hollywood’s brightest stars duke it out in Los Angeles court rooms over child custody. And while we might find ourselves enthralled by breakup battles, perhaps there is a lesson to be learned. Of course, not everyone is an actor or pop-star with millions of dollars. But, at the end of the day, human emotion is often what drives a child custody case.
Take a look at some of these top celebrity custody battles, and see if it helps you put a New Jersey child custody case in perspective.
Alec Baldwin and Kim Basinger
In a classic battle of “he said, she said,” these two movie stars fought it out over their daughter, Ireland, who also goes by the nickname Addie. She said he was emotionally abusive. He said she was mentally unstable. He also called his daughter “a thoughtless little pig.” In the end, though, after apologies were made, the courts restored Baldwin’s visitation rights and the two have shared custody.
Britney Spears and Kevin Federline
This custody battle was so bitter it made washing your mouth out with soap seem like a pleasantry. Britney’s descent into drugs, alcohol, and unsafe behavior caused her to be the first major female celebrity in years to lose custody of her children. She lost custody because she reportedly failed to follow a court order that required her not to drive without a valid license, and to undergo random drug testing and parental counseling.
Michael Jackson and Debbie Rowe
Michael Jackson was notorious for his eccentric—to say the least—lifestyle. And not much was different when it came to his custody case. Originally, in 2001, Rowe gave up her legal rights to their children, Michael, Jr. and Paris. However, after allegations of child molestation, Rowe tried to regain custody. After nearly a 3-year battle, the two reached a settlement out of court in which Rowe reportedly gave up visitation rights for reinstated alimony payments of up to $750,000 a year.
David Hasselhoff and Pamela Bach
As in most custody battles, it’s his word versus her word. He accused her of substance abuse, and she said he was a physically abusive alcoholic. In May 2007, a video surfaced of an intoxicated Hasselhoff eating a hamburger in a stupor while in the presence of older daughter, Taylor, who can be heard in the video pleading with her father to stop being a drunk. However, despite the scandalous video, Hasselhoff was awarded primary physical and legal custody of the kids in June 2007. Then, a few months later in December, the two settled on a joint custody agreement.