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Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Kevin Costner’s estranged wife asks judge to snub actor’s bid to force her to pay R1.7m of his legal fees

Kevin Costner’s estranged wife is said to be asking a judge to snub the actor’s bid to force her to pay $100 000 (about R1.7m) of his legal fees as their divorce fight grows even more bitter.

‘The Bodyguard’ actor, 68, was last month ordered to pay $200 000 in attorney’s fees and $100 000 in forensic accountancy costs to his handbag designer ex-partner Christine Baumgartner, 49, which he has now reportedly asked her to pay a third.

Entertainment Tonight said a court filing showed Baumgartner – who has children Cayden, 16, Hayes, 14, and Grace, 13, with Costner, and who filed for divorce in May after 18 years of marriage citing “irreconcilable differences” – is arguing Costner would not have racked up the heavy fees if he had not launched a bid to have her kicked out of their $145-million California estate in the wake of their split.

The outlet said: “Christine argues that Kevin could have avoided the legal fees by simply waiting for their pre-determined November court date, rather than filing an additional motion in July, requesting that she move out of their house earlier than Aug. 31, a date Christine had previously agreed to.”

It added a hearing on the legal fees issue has been scheduled for August 2 in Santa Barbara.

The couple’s latest legal spat comes after Costner accused Baumgartner of taking his property “without knowledge or consent”.

Documents obtained by Page Six show the ‘Yellowstone’ star claims his ex bought personal items and took out cash with credit cards from the staff that runs the family house, and that he believes she devised this plan before she filed for divorce in May.

He said in the papers Baumgartner has allegedly “shown a disturbing propensity in the last several months, both before and after separation, to take (Kevin’s) property without his knowledge or consent, especially since this case was filed.”

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The documents, filed on 13 July also alleged Baumgartner paid a Los Angeles criminal defence lawyer $25 000 from her husband’s property funds without his knowledge.

They added the mom-of-three paid her divorce lawyer Susan Wiesner on the “credit card of an employee which is traditionally used for Costner family house charges and paid by (the actor.)”

Baumgartner has been ordered to vacate their California mansion by the end of the month after a judge reinforced the premarital agreement they both signed in 2004.

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