The untold truth of Chrisley Knows Best

Chrisley Knows Best star and family patriarch Todd Chrisley is best known for his hysterical one-liners and no-nonsense attitude. As for Todd's wife Julie Chrisley and their kids Savannah, Chase, and Grayson, their silly antics bring the USA network reality series to life. And who could forget Todd's mom, Nanny Faye? The grandma is always trying to get under her son's skin, whether it's going out for a night out on the town or gambling

But underneath this funny and family-oriented show, there are plenty of dark secrets waiting to be unearthed. Take Todd's financial background, for instance. Although the dad lives a life of luxury on the show, he has struggled with bankruptcy and tax issues

Then there's the topic of Todd's older children from a previous marriage, Lindsie and Kyle. Fans will probably be surprised to learn why the two bid farewell to the show despite its growing popularity.

Intrigued yet? Grab a bowl of popcorn and let's dive deep into the untold truth of Chrisley Knows Best.

Is Todd's fortune all smoke and mirrors?

From Todd's impressive homes to his extensive wardrobe (the reality star has a killer closet), it's fair to assume he's loaded. But questions about Todd's fortune were raised in August 2012 when he filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Todd was then appointed a trustee who was in charge seizing his assets to pay back creditors. However, once the process of Chapter 7 bankruptcy is over, the debt is "eliminated forever," according to Dummies.

As for how Todd got in this financial mess to begin with? Look no further than a real estate loan gone wrong. "He guaranteed a real estate development loan and it failed," his attorney, Robert Furr, told People. "He was on the hook for $30 million."

To put the financial flop into perspective, Todd said he was in debt to the tune of $49.4 million. Considering the dad had $4.2 million in assets at the time, it's easy to understand why he filed for bankruptcy.

Although the Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing should have been an easy process, Todd allegedly hid his assets and continued to spend frivolously, according to People. Todd's lawyers, who said their client "had nothing to hide," eventually reached a $150,000 settlement in 2015. But unbelievably enough, the television star still owed $70,000 of that settlement as of January 2017, according to legal documents obtained by the Daily Mail. Sheesh.

Julie might not be as angelic as she seems

On Chrisley Knows Best, Julie comes across as loving housewife with the patience of a saint. Beneath the flattering veneer of reality television, however, Julie might be hiding a dark side. Case in point: Cops were sent to Julie's Nashville home in February 2016 to "seize her clothing, jewelry, and other personal property, to satisfy a $20,802.87 judgment that [she] refused to pay," according to Nashville Scoop

The financial drama all started when Julie and her company, Jubilee Investments, were on the hook for $12,743 due to a failed "land-sale contract." Todd was originally on the lawsuit too, but was able to have his name removed from it. Unfortunately for Julie, the $12,743 debt ballooned to $20,802 due to "legal fees, court costs," and other expenses, according to Nashville Scoop. After Julie tried to dodge the debt nine separate times and creditors unsuccessfully tried to "garnish her bank accounts," a judge ordered "a non-wage garnishment." Translation: authorities got permission to go to Julie's home and take her personal property to satisfy the debt.

After the order was served on Feb. 12, 2016, Julie produced a cashier's check for the full amount. Talk about a close call.

Did Todd try to dodge Uncle Sam?

Todd's legal woes continued into February 2017, when Atlanta's Channel 2 Action News conducted a story about his state income taxes. Although Todd lived in Georgia with his family for a long time before moving to Nashville, Tennessee in 2016, the dad's bankruptcy trustee, Jason Pettie, told the news station that his client didn't file any state income taxes in the Peach State between 2004-2011. 

Making matters even more curious? Todd claimed to be a resident of Florida in his federal tax returns. "His kids went to school in Georgia. His wife, his business, everything was here in Georgia," an attorney for one of Todd's creditors told the station about the seemingly fishy filings. It's important to note here that Florida — similarly to Tennessee — doesn't require state income taxes

When Channel 2 Action News asked Todd's son, Kyle, about the drama, he replied: "He's always been that way. He stretches the truth." And when questioned about whether the family ever lived in Florida, he said: "No. We really went there for vacations in the summer and that was really the only time we ever went. We lived here in Georgia."

Hmm. It sounds like Todd has some explaining to do.

Nanny Faye's housing issues

It's no secret that Todd and his mother, aka Nanny Faye, are very close. Todd even goes as far to monitor who the grandmother is spending his time with and her daily activities, a dynamic that has played out on Chrisley Knows Best time and time again. And given the reality star's protective nature, it's a bit odd that he'd jeopardize Nanny Faye's living situation due to his financial issues. What are we talking about, exactly? It all started in April 2014 when Nanny Faye's $500,000 Georgia home went into foreclosure proceedings because Todd allegedly defaulted on a "$362,300 secured loan to the tune of $33,533.38," according to Radar Online.

Todd's creditor, U.S. Bank, National Association and Homebanc Mortgage Loan, was granted permission on Monday, April 21, 2014  "to commence foreclosure proceedings against" Nanny Faye's home and "obtain possession of the property," according to Radar Online

It's unclear what happened with Nanny Faye's home since the reports about a possible foreclosure hit the headlines, but we hope Nanny Faye has since found her forever home. 

The real reason why Lindsie bailed on the show

When Lindsie Chrisley bid farewell to Chrisley Knows Best around the end of season 5, there were many questions about her departure. One scenario is that Lindsie wasn't able to uproot her life in Georgia to Nashville, Tennessee where the show is filmed as of January 2019. It's a fair theory considering Lindsie has a young son and husband to think of — she can't just move at the drop of a hat, right? 

Another possibility concerns Lindsie's new venture with Teen Mom 2 star Kailyn Lowry. The two co-host a podcast called Coffee Convos as of November 2017, and it's reasonable to assume the project keeps her quite busy.

The supposed real reason for Lindsie's departure, however, is much more juicy. A production insider claims that Todd wanted to use Lindsie's then-divorce as a plot point in the show — something she wasn't happy about. "Todd used Lindsie's heartache for a storyline, and he did not care either way how she felt about it," an alleged source explained to Radar Online. "He did what he wanted to do, and in the end it ruined his relationship with his daughter." 

If the gossip is true, we can't blame Lindsie for bailing. The mom did get back together with her husband, after all, and we imagine the rumored situation was uncomfortable for everyone involved.

Kyle versus Todd

Anyone who has followed the show closely is likely aware that Todd and his eldest son, Kyle, haven't always gotten along. But what fans might not know about is the real reason for their rift. It's a complicated case, to put it mildly, especially since it's difficult to figure out who is telling the truth.

As for Kyle, he claims his dad is a fake who only cares about Chrisley Knows Best's success. "This show has been nothing but bad for me," Kyle told the Daily Mail in October 2014. "At this point he's ruined me and he's ruined the other three kids he's had who are spoiled. The whole thing is fake. He micromanages everything so if you say something and he doesn't like it he'll say, 'Stop' and tell you what to say and you'll do it again."

Todd's reaction to Kyle's comments was to reveal his son's supposed mental illness."Kyle is bipolar and normally, people that are bipolar, they seek out a way to self-medicate, which is what Kyle has done since he's been young," he told E! News. "I want what's best for him."

Sigh, what a sad situation. We hope these two will be able to mend fences in the future.

Is Todd using his granddaughter for ratings?

One of Kyle's most upsetting claims about Todd involves Kyle's daughter, Chloe. After the dad and his then-girlfriend, Angela, lost custody of Chloe to Todd due to various issues, troubling accusations surfaced in the Daily Mail. In a nutshell, Kyle alleged that Todd wanted custody of Chloe to expand his fanbase.  

"My dad showed no interest in Chloe at all until the show and until it was pointed out that having a mixed race child and getting her and all that would be good for his demographic," Kyle told the Daily Mail about the situation. "He didn't want to see her before then. He said he wanted nothing to do with her." Yikes.

Despite Kyle's claims, Todd continues to raise Chloe. "Chloe is our family, and we are glad that the world gets to see such a beautiful child grow, explore and come into herself so brilliantly through love and respect," he told Us Weekly in December 2017.

It's also interesting to note that Todd often posts sweet photos of Chloe to his Instagram account. "God thank you for everything I never even imagined ... I love this baby with all my heart," he captioned a snap of the little girl in November 2018.

Todd's relationship with Julie lacks spice

Todd and Julie, who've been married since 1996, appear to be a loving couple on Chrisley Knows Best. Every episode ends with the couple relaxing in bed together, and they often go on creative dates. But is the duo's relationship as romantic as it seems on camera? An insider who is supposedly close with the pair says no.

"It is hard for anyone who works with Todd or Julie to believe that their marriage is authentic," the alleged source told Radar Online. "It's made for TV. They do not display the same level of affection and love towards each other off-camera as they do when they are filming." The insider also alleged that Todd's obsession with becoming "Mr. Hollywood" often keeps him away from the family's home, leaving little time for romance with Julie.

"Julie is the one at home with the kids making sure everything with the family goes smoothly. And even that is fake," they added."They have a team of people underneath them at this point so in reality neither one of them have to lift a finger when it comes to housekeeping."

Of course, it's completely possible that the rumors about Julie and Todd's behind-the-scenes relationship are bogus.

Todd's scripted reality

One of the most entertaining aspects of Chrisley Knows Best is Todd's infamous one-liners and sarcastic quips. When criticizing Savannah's choice in shorts, for example, Todd joked: "Smaller or larger, they still look like a**," according to Betches.

Some fans might be disappointed to learn, however, that Todd supposedly doesn't write his own jokes. "Todd uses a team of comedy writers for his show, and has been using them to write dialogue for several seasons," a production insider told Radar Online. "Todd does not come up with this stuff on his own, and is not as funny as people think."

What's even more shady? The source claims that most of the show is scripted. "More than half of the dialogue on the show is scripted and a large majority of the scenes are re-shot when they are not as funny as he wants them to be," they explained.

To play devil's advocate here, it's not uncommon for reality stars to stretch the truth. 

Family tragedy strikes

Even though Todd doesn't talk about his extended family often on the show, he maintains a close relationship with his siblings. A perfect example of this? Todd saved the day when his brother, Randy, was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer in October 2014.

Todd broke the difficult news to viewers about Randy's condition shortly after the family started filming Season 2 of Chrisley Knows Best. "As of today, they have started the arduous and long road of radiation and chemotherapy. The family remains hopeful of a full and speedy recovery for their beloved Randy," a rep said in a statement, according to Us Weekly. "The family is asking for privacy and respect during this process, especially for Randy's young family who are trying to cope with this very recent and unexpected prognosis. There will be no further comments regarding this matter."

The patriarch later revealed that he helped Randy by flying him out to a hospital in Atlanta. "I flew back to be with my brother and I had him moved to a hospital in Atlanta and he's doing as well as he can," Todd told E! News. "He's on his sixth round of radiation and first round of chemo so he's kinda knocked out right now with the chemo."

Todd's generosity in this situation goes to show that he's there for his family in tough times.