Kelly Ripa (Hayley) has been awarded $104,482 in damages by a New York federal court judge. Ripa, who declined to comment on the case, is reportedly pleased by the outcome.
So what's the story behind the lawsuit? The award granted Ripa came from a lawsuit filed by the woman who claims to have "discovered" her, Cathy Parker of CPM INC., a management agency.
Ray Beckerman, Ripa's attorney, told TV Guide that, "this is a suit by the former manager to try to get extra commissions for future earnings. This manager was not a major person in the industry: She had set up shop in her basement in Southern New Jersey."
About ten years ago, Parker found Ripa performing in local theater in Southern New Jersey. Parker helped Ripa land a spot on the now defunct Dance Party USA
. Then in 1990 Ripa was cast on AMC, but shortly thereafter her relationship with Parker fell apart.
Beckerman hinted that actors can be chastised for switching agents mid-career. Ripa's apparent reason for severing ties with Parker was dissatisfaction with the service that Parker had provided. Parker then sued Ripa to recover monies invested in advancing Ripa's career. An arbitrator, however, determined that Ripa did not owe any money to Parker and, in fact, Ripa had actually overpaid for the representation. This overpayment was combined with Ripa's attorney fees to fight the claim by Parker to reach the overall settlement total.