Celebs Who Went Broke In 2019

Showbiz is a fickle beast. One day you're hot and the next you're struggling to find work. So, it's not too surprising that so many celebrities have managed to lose their millions, even if they're still actively working. Rapper 50 Cent somehow blew through half a billion dollars before filing for bankruptcy. Nicolas Cage squandered his $150 million fortune on things like comic books, sharks, private islands, and real estate, yet has a booming career in the VOD circuit. It seems like no celebrity is safe, especially from Hollywood's most notorious villain: the IRS.

In 2019, a number of stars found themselves struggling to stay afloat, and a lot of that had to do with tax liens. For artists like Toni Braxton, this wasn't a first-time deal, but for others who happened to have a solid accountant, sometimes unfortunate circumstances got pretty darn pricey. These celebs lost a lot of money in 2019.

Toni Braxton needs to unbreak her bank

Money troubles are nothing new for Toni Braxton. According to ABC News, the "Unbreak My Heart" singer filed for bankruptcy twice — once in 1998 and once in 2010 — and even considered posing for Playboy to help alleviate her debts. About a decade later, it looked like Braxton was having some financial issues yet again. 

According to The Blast, the State of California and federal government filed four tax liens against Braxton in 2018, the same year she released her ninth studio album, Sex & Cigarettes. The star reportedly owed more than $780,000 in back taxes from 2015 and 2016, but her issues didn't stop there. Amid her split from Birdman in 2019, E! News reported that the IRS and the State of California filed additional liens because Braxton supposedly owed nearly half a million dollars in back taxes from 2017. Basically, girl might need to hire a new accountant.

It looks like she'll be kicking off 2020 with some serious debts, but Braxton can at least count on that reality TV money. Despite a brief hiatus over contract woes in 2018, Braxton Family Values was back on WeTV for another season in 2019. According to TMZ, Braxton and her sisters are reportedly contracted throughout Season 9, so hopefully that will help the star's finances.

Damon Dash makes virtually no money

Roc-A-Fella Records co-founder Damon Dash was once worth a whopping $50 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth. These days, the entrepreneur and music producer is flat-out broke — and he can partly thank his kids. Those little suckers are expensive, and, as of this writing, he's got another one on the way with fiancée Raquel Horn.

In November 2019, TMZ reported that Dash owed around $2,400 in an on-going business lawsuit, but couldn't come up with the money because he had no salary and his business wasn't profitable. Claiming that the only way he got paid was through Empire creator Lee Daniels, who owed the star $2 million, Dash explained that even that cash was being garnished by creditors. It didn't help that the renowned music mogul allegedly owed his baby mamas a lot of money on top of it all.

According to Page Six, Dash was arrested around that time for reportedly owing more than $400,000 in child support to ex-wife Rachel Roy and Cindy Morales. Apparently, the cops had been after him since 2015. The following month, TMZ reported that amount owed had ballooned to nearly $1 million and the women cut Dash out of the equation entirely by reaching a settlement that allowed their cash to be withdrawn directly out of Dash's payments from Daniels. Since Dash has been barely making any money at all, perhaps he can ask pal Jay-Z, who's worth a cool billion, to give him a loan?

Mel B is unemployed and running out of cash

Melanie "Mel B" Brown was once resting on a £80 million ($105 million) Spice Girls fortune, but allegedly became destitute after ending her second marriage. In her 2018 memoir, Brutally Honest, Brown outlined how second husband Stephen Belafonte reportedly took control of her finances and verbally and emotionally abused her for a decade. "I became a woman who didn't have her own computer, didn't drive herself, didn't know her bank details," she wrote (via The Sun).

When Brown finally left Belafonte and the glamorous homes they shared together in 2017, she had just £800 ($1,055) and a suitcase of clothes to her name. According to Page Six, Scary Spice was ordered to pay her ex $5,000 a month for child support and $350,000 for his legal fees when their divorce was finalized. That's fine and well, but the pair already reportedly owed hundreds of thousands of dollars to the IRS, according to The Blast. 

It looks like her situation got even worse in 2019. According to the Mirror, Brown's book tour was set to lose £57,000 ($75,502) in unsold tickets that August. The Daily Mail also reported that the former Spice Girl claimed to be "unemployed and her steady money stream [had] dried up." She was seeking a child support reduction because she had a monthly salary of just $3,747. That barely put a dent in her $120,475 monthly expenses. Meanwhile, Posh Spice had more money than the Queen.

R. Kelly couldn't even post his own bail

R. Kelly's 2019 was a train wreck, as anyone who's seen Lifetime's Surviving R. Kelly or watched his horrifying meltdown during a CBS News interview is already aware. Things seemed to take a nose dive for the star that July, when he was arrested on 18 federal counts, including child pornography, kidnapping, and forced labor, according to NPR. This case only scratched the surface of the decades of allegations leveled at Kelly since 1994.

Though NPR reports that the "Ignition" singer has pleaded not guilty to various charges, Kelly's legal troubles have left him absolutely destitute. According to NBC News, when Kelly was arrested in February 2019 on 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse, he was unable to post his $100,000 bail because his finances were — as his attorney put it — "a mess." He was jailed again the following month, because he couldn't pay $161,000 in back child support, and told CBS News that it was because "so many people" had been stealing from him. "How can I pay child support? How?" Kelly shouted during the infamous interview (via Time). "If my ex-wife is destroying my name and I can't work? How can I work? How can I get paid? How can I take care of my kids? How?"

According to Celebrity Net Worth, the star is only worth $100,000 as of this writing, but he would have probably been worth more than $150 million without his legal problems.

This Big Brother star has some big debt

At one point, Celebrity Big Brother winner Katie Price was reportedly worth more than £40 million ($52 million), but she was already in a great deal of financial trouble when 2019 rolled around. The year prior, the star came to an Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA) — a repayment plan, for those of us who aren't familiar with British courts — to pay off her debts to creditors, according to BBC News. Metro reports that she had to put up £12,000 ($15,829) a month for four years, but ultimately couldn't stick to the plan. She was declared bankrupt in November 2019.

It's unclear how Price blew through her fortune. The model became a career reality star with stints on Footballers' Wives and I'm a Celebrity ... Get Me Out of Here! She even won Celebrity Big Brother in 2015 and is currently on My Crazy Life, but according to BBC News, things have been difficult for Price in recent years. She was convicted of drunk driving, admitted to "shouting a 'tirade of abuse'" at her ex-husband's new partner (which landed her a meager fine), and probably had a huge chunk of her income slashed when she was banned from promoting diet products on Instagram by the Advertising Standards Authority.

According to the Evening Standard, Price has spent around £1,000 ($1319) a week on groceries for her family, which could definitely be cut back. Perhaps she should try Tesco or Aldi.

A bad real estate investment put Mohamed Hadid in hot water

Gigi and Bella Hadid might have to give pops a little loan. The famed real estate developer, Mohamed Hadid, filed for bankruptcy in 2019. Now, according to TMZ, Mohamed was clear that this wasn't a personal bankruptcy, but it seems like his business collectively lost more than his entire reported net worth of $5 million. So, what's the deal?

According to the tabloid, Hadid's construction company, 901 Strada LLC, filed for bankruptcy that November, citing between $10 million and $50 million worth of debt. This was largely because of a failed development project in Bel-Air called the Starship Enterprise. The mega-mansion was going to be worth $100 million, but a judge declared it a "clear and present danger" to the surrounding homes because it "wasn't built up to safety codes" and rested on "an unstable hillside." 

Hadid was tasked with tearing the property down, but reportedly couldn't even pay $500,000 for the receiver, according to the Daily Mail. With the demolition expected to cost around $5 million, if the real estate mogul doesn't chalk up the cash to tear down the Starship Enterprise, the taxpayers are probably going to have to foot the bill. C'mon, Gigi could probably get that cash in a few.

Erin Heatherton had $919 in checking before filing for bankruptcy

Erin Heatherton dated Leonardo DiCaprio and didn't even walk away with enough to cover her debts. Couldn't the dude have loaned her some of his $260 million fortune as a token of gratitude? It's not every day 45-year-old man lands a young Victoria's Secret model.

According to The Blast, Heatherton filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in 2019, claiming she was more than half a million dollars in debt. The star admitted her average monthly income was just $1,089.91 — $221 of which came from family and friends — and that she only had $919 in her checking accounts. Her monthly expenses reportedly totaled $1,074 (which is shockingly low considering the average rent for a one bedroom in Los Angeles is $2,330).

Heatherton's earnings took a nosedive in recent years. The Blast reports that the model made $226,596 in 2017 but just $18,000 in 2018. As of April 2019, she had only made $2,820. A huge part of this may be because the star famously quit Victoria's Secret after the company allegedly told her she needed to lose weight in 2013.

Ain't nothing like a frozen bank account for this Beverly Hills housewife

Dorit Kemsley and her bizarre accent seemed to be in dire straits when she appeared on Million Dollar Listing: L.A. in January 2019 and tried to sell her mansion for a $4 million price cut. So, what's going on with The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star's finances? It would appear that her husband, PK, is in hot water.

According to The Blast, PK was sued by Nico Kirzis in 2016, who'd hoped to recover a $1.2 million loan he gave the reality TV husband in 2011. A judge ultimately ordered PK to repay the loan plus interest, but he was already reportedly struggling to pay a $3.6 million casino marker to The Bellagio. Even though the marker was reduced in a settlement between the two parties, PK reportedly still failed to make payments. 

In June 2019, Kirzis tried to seize PK's assets and successfully took nearly $30,000 from an account shared by Dorit and her husband. This came after the pair's bank account was reportedly frozen, according to Us Weekly. The tabloid also reported that Dorit was sent to mediation with her former business partner, Ryan Horne, after she allegedly failed to pay back a $205,000 loan he gave her to launch her swimwear line. This case will go to trial in 2020 if it's still unresolved, and somehow, leaking a story about your fellow Housewives to the tabloids doesn't seem as bad in comparison.

Stacey Dash is broke? As if!

Welp, at least Stacey Dash isn't a virgin who can't drive. At one point, the Clueless star was reportedly worth $8 million, but it looks like her true net worth might be a heck of a lot lower. Dash found herself in a bit of trouble in September 2019, when she was arrested for alleged domestic violence. According to TMZ, Dash reportedly called 911 and claimed she was being assaulted by her husband, Jeffrey Marty. Police showed up to her home and arrested the actress after they found scratches on Marty's left arm, but a source told TMZ that Dash "acted in self-defense." It's not clear what happened, but it is clear that Dash was broke at the time of the incident.

As Dash prepared to fight her misdemeanor domestic violence charge, she reportedly filed legal documents asking for a public defender because she couldn't afford a private lawyer. According to TMZ, a judge approved it in the event that charges were filed, but asked for proof of financial need.

It's not shocking to find out that Dash has been suffering from financial hardship. Most recently, the star has become better known for her role in Sharknado 4 than anything else, and she only has one credit over the last two years, according to Rotten Tomatoes. Nonetheless, it seems like she's turning things around with some projects slated for 2020, and her net worth is currently thought to be around $100,000.

Chris Soules lost a lot in a wrongful death suit

At one point, Chris Soules was one of the richest bachelors to ever appear on The Bachelor. According to Money, the star was thought to have been worth about $1.5 million, but that was before tragedy struck. As of this writing, the reality star's estimated net worth has shrunk to just $500,000.

People reports that Soules was arrested in 2017 for leaving the scene of an accident after rear-ending a tractor, killing 66-year-old Vietnam veteran Kenny Mosher. The Bachelor alum ended up taking a conditional guilty plea for the aggravated misdemeanor charge, which carried a maximum fine of $6,250. 

Whether or not Soules has to pay that fine is up in the air, because the sentencing has been delayed, according to USA Today. Unfortunately for Soules, the wrongful death case — which was settled in May 2019 — has been a lot more expensive. According to the Daily Mail, Soules and his parents were required to pay $2.5 million to the Mosher family as part of the settlement. Hopefully, his parents have some savings, because that sum is large enough to bankrupt the former reality star.

Harvey Weinstein's downfall

Harvey Weinstein's net worth has completely tanked in the wake of numerous sexual misconduct allegations and criminal charges. Apparently, being the kind of guy who regularly hands out NDAs is pretty expensive (according to Business Insider, those NDAs were finally cancelled in 2018).

The New York Times reports that the disgraced producer faces charges for "allegations of sexual violence against two women" in New York, but has been accused of wrongdoing by more than 80 women. In May 2019, he finally sought to settle the connecting lawsuits brought on by his accusers and the New York State attorney general with a tentative $44 million deal. 

Weinstein — who reportedly lost $15 to $20 million in his divorce, according to Page Six — isn't the only one paying up. Even though the producer was ousted from his namesake studio, the company was still facing financial hardship because of his allegations by May 2019. According to The New York Times, the Weinstein Company filed for bankruptcy in 2018 and was looking to liquidate its assets prior to the producer's $44 million settlement. The filing claimed a strain was put on the company's resources after "efforts to resolve legal claims" with some of Weinstein's accusers had stalled. 

According to Celebrity Net Worth, Weinstein's fortune has shrunk by $250 million since the peak of his career. Reuters reports that Weinstein's trial has been delayed until January 2020 and has been consolidated to include a new indictment. He has pleaded not guilty.

Rose McGowan spent her money 'fighting off the monsters'

Rose McGowan was among the first women to publicly accuse Harvey Weinstein of sexual misconduct, but it had a deep impact on the star's finances. According to The Guardian, the actress claimed she was raped by the producer at the 1997 Sundance Film Festival, and 20 years later, she pushed herself to the forefront of the #MeToo movement. Unfortunately, McGowan believes her bravery came at a price and admitted her "career was stolen."

"I've been called one of the first to speak out. No. I was the first. I called the New York Times. I blew it wide open, not them," she told The Guardian in 2019. "They won the Pulitzer and I'm the one hard-up for money. It's disgusting. I was kind of grossed out by how much they enjoyed being lauded."

Ultimately, McGowan's legal battle put her in such dire financial straits that she was reportedly trying to sell her house in 2018 to pay the legal bills she accrued "fighting off the monsters," according to Entertainment Weekly. The year after she spoke to EW at the Television Critics Association's press tour, she was apparently still broke. While McGowan currently has an estimated net worth of $6 million, who knows how much it could have been.