Lisa Marie Presley is $16 million in debt, blames last business manager

Whenever I hear about celebrities being in massive debt, I think of Suze Orman’s story in the intro to one of her books (I can’t remember which one) that when she was younger she was driving a Mercedes, decked out in a business suit and realized that she likely didn’t have as much money as the waitress who had just served her. That’s what debt means technically, but I still always think that 1. These people are living the life of luxury regardless of whether or not they’re bankrupt and 2. They’re able to make the money back quicker than the rest of use plebes. So while Lisa Marie Presley may be deeper in the hole than most of us can imagine, she’s still living large. Lisa Marie revealed in new divorce documents that she’s $16 million in debt, owing $10 million in back income taxes alone. She has a massive estate in England which she hasn’t been able to sell and for which she’s defaulted on the mortgage payments/ She is blaming the debt on her last business manager and is claiming he hid the details from her. On the surface this looks similar to Nicolas Cage’s situation, although she probably didn’t spend as wildly as he does. (Cage and Presley were incidentally married to for a couple of years, from 2002 to 2004.) Here’s the news from People Magazine:

In court documents relating to Presley’s ongoing divorce from Michael Lockwood, it was revealed that Elvis’ daughter owes debts in a number of areas, including income taxes, a defaulted mortgage and credit card bills.

According to the documents, which were filed on Wednesday and obtained by PEOPLE Friday, Justin Stiegemeyer, Presley’s current business manager who is responsible for “day-to-day finances and paying all of her bills,” disclosed that the 50-year-old had first learned of her debt while her old business manager Provident Financial Management was handling her finances.

Stiegemeyer went on to claim that Presley “had not been provided with proper accountings or notices or been kept abreast of her finances” by her former business manager and that at the time they were fired, Presley had “total liquid assets of less than $20,000.”

He also revealed that “by the end of 2015” there were “no additional funds” other than “the approximately $20,00 of liquid assets” available to Presley to use to pay her debts, adding that the majority of those debts “are related to unpaid income taxes” from 2012-2015, which “total over $10 million.”

In the court documents, Stiegemeyer went on to claim that Presley owes almost $50K in credit card debt, although he added that she has been actively paying down the sum and has managed to pay off the debt on certain cards in full.

Stiegemeyer said that Presley paid off one of three “outstanding American Express cards each totaling approximately $300,000” in October 2017 and that she made the final payment on a “Citicard credit card with a balance due of $111,083” in January of this year.

He also said that Presley expects one of her remaining outstanding AmEx bills to be “paid in full in September 2018.”

“Suffice it to say that in addition to having to pay off these debts, the payment issues with these cards has caused [Presley’s] credit to be significantly impaired,” Stiegemeyer added.

Her business manager went on to state that Presley hopes to begin making payments towards her income tax debt “once we have paid off the credit cards and various legal fee debts and obligations.”

In addition to the income tax and credit card debt owed, the documents claim Presley has defaulted on the mortgage of a $6 million home she owns in the U.K., which she has been trying to sell for the past two years.

Presley states she currently receives a monthly salary of $4,361 from her father Elvis Presley‘s estate, as well as $100,000 in dividends and interest from investments.

In this latest development in the pair’s ongoing divorce battle, Presley detailed her debts in response to a February 2017 court order requiring her to cover $50,000 of Lockwood’s $450,000 in attorney fees.

[From People]

It’s possible she’s not as broke as this and is using it as a negotiation tactic, but it does look bad. Is she like Tori Spelling in that she grew up wealthy with no limits and never had to think about her spending? How does she only make 4k a month from Elvis’s estate? Did she just hire the wrong business manager? It’s possible she’s a victim of an unscrupulous person, but that’s often what celebrities claim. Hopefully whatever is going on, her nine year-old twin daughters are safe and well taken care of. Last year we heard that they were staying with their grandmother, Lisa’s mom Priscilla, after photos of child abuse and pornography were found on Lockwood’s computer. Lisa’s Instagram makes it look like the twins are back with her now. I’m surprised she’s not divorced from Lockwood yet. She filed for divorce from him almost two years ago.


A post shared by Lisa Marie Presley (@lisa_mariepresley) on

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Event photos of Lisa Marie with Riley Keough, her oldest daughter, are from October, 2017. Credit: WENN. Other photos credit Getty and Instagram/Lisa Marie Presley

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62 Responses to “Lisa Marie Presley is $16 million in debt, blames last business manager”

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  1. Hh says:

    Speaking as someone who works in banking, I can tell that many people take a hands off approach to their finances when someone else is around. I’m not even talking a financial advisor or accountant, but couples. One person manages the bills and the other person doesn’t even look at them. It’s quite infuriating because they get surprised when people come to them to collect money. They act as though because they didn’t keep up with their accounts then they shouldn’t be responsible for any fees associated with backpayment or untimely payment. If you don’t want to be responsible for an account, don’t put it in your name. If your name is on an account, you’re responsible for the debt too, even if you’ve never even set eyes on the bill.

    Moral of the story: Check in with your finances and credit on regular or semi-regular basis. Know what’s going on with bills that have your name on them.

  2. Clare says:

    I don’t get it – what is her source of income, if not Elvis’ estate, that’s allowed to live large all this time?? What’s changed? I mean I can understand bad management etc, but it’s not like she went from making $20m a movie to nothing – presumably she’s always had the same income from the estate? I don’t get it!!

    Who owns Elvis’ catalogue?
    If she defaulted in the mortgage why hasn’t it been repossessed?
    If she owes the IRS money why hasn’t she been forced to sell assets, even if at a loss?

  3. Neelyo says:

    Dear lord, in that top pic, she looks like she’s being propped up by her daughter. Haven’t seen her in a long time, has she been ill?

    Also, was she a Scientologist? Maybe that’s where her money went.

  4. Hazel says:

    Isn’t she the beneficiary of Elvis’ estate? That’s worth a lot of millions.

  5. trollontheloose says:

    Compulsive shopping is a real thing …

    • Krill says:

      Watching vintage Howard Stern interviews, I stumbled on a few of Lisa Marie given over two decades ago. She was at the time very frugal. I forget the details but I do remember her saying that she did her own shopping and when they scoffed, she invited them to quiz her on the costs of groceries. She was more in touch than Howard Stern by far. She also insisted on driving a modest car which they clowned her for. I mean perhaps those were her “slumming” years. Rich people do like to act all Bohemian in their 20s but I would be surprised if she swung so far to the other extreme as to spend the entire Pressley fortune. Maybe her management stole from her?

      And also Scientology? Maybe she plonked down a good chunk into the cult

  6. Evie says:

    Lisa Marie may be in debt but Elvis’ estate is still making lots of money. So if she spends more conservatively and gets some sound fiscal counseling she should be fine. Lisa should start by taking advice from her Mom Priscilla who was responsible for turning Elvis’ estate from being barely profitable to a fiscal gold mine.
    There’s also another theory being floated that Lisa Marie is not as broke as she claims and that she’s hiding her assets to keep the estranged husband from getting her money.

  7. PunkyMomma says:

    “outstanding American Express cards each totaling approximately $300,000” I should be so lucky to have that amount available to me when I retire (if I am ever able to do so).

    The rich are different — Lisa Marie could sell Graceland, if she were that needy.

    I can’t imagine being the only child of an icon, especially Elvis (not to mention that she looks so much like her father). What constitutes normalcy for her?

  8. velourazure says:

    It would not at all surprise me that she’s terrible with money and spends beyond her income. But it would ALSO not surprise me that this is her divorce strategy to avoid paying the ex. There’s no way her liquid assets are 20,000. The Elvis estate/licensing probably generates that in 1/2 hour.

    • oh-dear says:

      those assets are not likely liquid though. I would imagine they are managed by a Trust that is in the name of more than one person (perhaps Priscilla, and the daughters) in an effort to keep them from being available to or sold by 1 sole decision-maker. I think Priscilla has been very smart with Elvis’ estate and would have foresight into estate management.

  9. Igotbiglipsandicannotlie says:

    I read somewhere that her daughter has been financially supporting her for quite some time. I think she even moved herself and her kids in with her too. I don’t know factual that is though but it would make sense now reading this.

  10. Chaine says:

    According to Wikipedia, Lisa Maria sold off most of her Elvis rights years ago. She only has a 15% interest in the Elvis estate now and retains ownership of Graceland. I still think a 15% ownership should bring in way more than $4000 a month, but maybe Elvis revenue is dwindling as his original fan base dies off?

    • Christin says:

      I recall reading that she has a seat on the board, and her health insurance is paid plus I think she received a salary as well. I think 104K a month (investments plus the estate revenue) is a lowball figure.

      The part about the fan base aging/dying off — That is definitely something that will eventually come into play. In video from last year’s annual pilgrimage, the average age of attendees was at least mid-60s. They’ve tried to keep him relevant, but I cannot see the same level of interest for 20 more years.

    • Meghan says:

      Graceland is in a bad part of Memphis. Not the worst part, but I don’t routinely travel there and would only go in order to visit Graceland (I’ve never been). They built a huge hotel there a couple of years ago hoping to draw more business travelers and groups but the fact is that no one but Elvis diehards and people who don’t know the Memphis area are going to stay there.

      Elvis Week in August is still a pretty big draw but I didn’t hear much this year in Janaury for his birthday (?)

  11. ilove6kies says:

    Holy $hit in that first photo she totally looked like Lindsay Lohan and I had to do a double take!

  12. SMDH says:

    She sold the lions share of Elvis’ estate several years ago……pretty much everything except Graceland (although as I recall she sold the retail rights but still owns the property). So that means she blew through a serious chunk of change. Wowza.

  13. Bridget says:

    Sounds like someone gave a lot of money to $cientology.

  14. Cee says:

    I manage my parents’ finances and they have a large household, plus the upkeep of my paternal grandparent’s house, and my mother’s private practice. It sometimes drives me CRAZY keeping up to date with payments, utilities, rent, taxes, credit cards, insurance, etc. And I also manage my own finances.

    Control is everything. If you retain a financial advisor/business manager demand numbers and projections. Be abreast of your financial condition before someone either swindles you or loses your money in a bad investment or simply not paying.

  15. Christin says:

    The “broke” stories started when the Mad Hatter separation blew into the headlines in 2016.

    The main components of the debt are the U.K. house and taxes, yet her new money manager is focusing on paying credit card debt first? The tax folks charge a hefty interest rate and won’t be ignored. Maybe there is a strategy here to negotiate the tax debt.

    My question is, how did she run through the massive lump sum she received in 2005, when she sold 85 percent of EPE (but retained the house).

  16. supersoft says:

    She looks horrible. Look at her Insta photos. She looks like a ghost. My guess is the divorce is the main reason for being broke aka “i dont have money to pay my ex’s lifestyle”.
    But in this case she shouldnt give him a penny. He doesnt seem to be a nice person.

  17. Geekychick says:

    Can I be honest?
    ok, she is the daughter of the greatest star there ever was etc., etc…..
    but COME ON, her twin daughters are not living with her by judge’s orders while dealing with child sexual abuse allegations on her husband (!!!!!! isn’t that just a little bit suspicious?), she’s (claiming she’s) broke with no real assets to show for it, looks drugged out of her mind on many, many occasions and lives on her daughter’s money! my god, the woman is a mess and the only pity I feel is for her children.

  18. Anna says:

    I worked for Provident years ago. This was a marriage of the most powerful business management firms of all time, e.g., Gerald Breslauer (basically god in the industry- from Spielberg and Katzenberg and Mike Ovitz to Bill Maher and many A+ only list people – which means BTW that they all took MAJOR Madoff hits cuz Breslauer was a Madoff investor big time), Rich Feldstein (yes, father of Jonah Hill, but basically has all of the music industry’s top artists–I remember the day Snoop was on top and sitting in the lobby and Rich turned down his business). When Siegel Feldstein, et al. merged with Breslauer Rutman & Chapman, it was the most the largest and most successful BM firm in entertainment.

    Pricilla Presley, Lisa Marie Presley and The Graceland Estate were clients of Rich Feldstein…but, he left Provident Financial Management and started his own firm (still at the top) many years ago. The question is, why did Lisa Marie and the Graceland Estate stay with Provident? Lisa is the SOLE BENEFICIARY of The Graceland Estate. She currently owns that and 15% of Elvis trademark rights. She and Priscilla took it from a couple million $$ when Elvis died to a mega millions powerhouse. This is obviously where Lisa’s fortune is. She can give herself whatever salary she wishes. It’s hers. While this loser is not entitled to this money, and Lisa’s attorneys are clearly creating a smoke screen for the courts, she is by no means broke, and none of the business managers in this story (at PFM) are unscrupulous other than Breslauers questionable dealings with Madoff, but he also left Provident many years ago.

    Perhaps the state of her, i.e., her clear drug problems, are the reason for her “allowance” from the estate. Pricilla was co-executor and may have stepped in and taken control.

  19. SJF says:

    There’s an old expression, “If you owe the bank $10,000 – you’re in trouble. If you owe the bank $10,000,000 – the bank’s in trouble.”

    Lisa has been sadly spiraling down for quite a while. When the child porn thing came up and the kids were taken away and given to Priscilla — that was huge. That she still hasn’t ended the marriage after losing her children is very sad.

    One would think on her 4th marriage — all of which ended relatively quickly — she’d have enough of a prenup to not have to play poor in the press. That said, I have no reason to believe she is aware of her day-to-day finances.

    Obviously the trauma of losing her father so young and in such a public way hit hard. His distance while he was alive must have also been painful. Regardless of or because of that, her entire adult life has been a very sad story.

    I wish her well but more to the point, I wish happiness and health to her kids.

    • Geekychick says:

      I agree with everything you said, except I think that when you do have children, you can’t self-destruct as you wish-you have children who deserve good care and stable home. and that is why I resent her, because her children deserve better. the fact that the children were taken away from her bc of sexual abuse charges on her husband is telling. very telling in the sense that obviously no one cared for those kids enough. and that is tragic.

      • SJF says:

        Geekychick I couldn’t agree with you more.

        Being a parent and ignoring/neglecting/harming your children is unforgivable. Tragically, there are countless reasons such things happen – ignorance, mental and emotional instability and pure cruelty among them. None of us know what the story is here. I believe Lisa Marie is troubled but I have no actual proof upon which to base this beyond opinion based on observation.

        Choosing to stay with a potential pedophile over your children is unforgivable.

        Thank God Priscilla is there for her grandchildren.

        At the end of the day, I wish Lisa Marie well and hope she gets the help she needs.

        Until that day, I hope her children remain loved, cared for and safely away from harm.

  20. SJhere says:

    I grew up working class poor. We all pitched in to keep going. We knew how much our folks loved us and worked to give us what we had.
    I would not have traded childhoods with Lisa Marie. Her childhood was never “normal”.
    All the money in the world at her fingertips and yet, look at her life….drugs, 4 divorces, years of her life connected with/overruled by CoS. Misery, IMO.

    Having said that…Hey! Why is the IRS not on her like tar and feathers?
    Even if she is hiding $$ during her divorce and it’s all BS, Lady pay your damn taxes just like the rest of us do!

    And, ffs, get of the drugs. Does she want to die the way her Father did? Damn shame.

    • still_sarah says:

      @ SJhere : Are her back taxes owed to the US government or the British government? I thought she had been living in Britain for many years.

    • Christin says:

      LMP and I are the same age, and I would not want to trade childhoods/lives, either. She had a lot of advantages, plus the lessons of her father’s mistakes (drugs/trusting people too much). Hopefully she can turn it around, finally.

      The taxes baffle me as well. Credit card debt over paying down years of back taxes (with very high penalties and interest rates)? Makes little sense. With all that said, I don’t think the hat guy deserves part of her inheritance (which is basically all she’s ever had to live on).

  21. still_sarah says:

    @ Celebitchy : “Lisa’s Instagram makes it look like the twins are back with her now”.

    I used to work for a child protection agency and later worked as a divorce lawyer. In my experience, Lisa Marie would not be the first noncustodial parent to plaster pics of her and her children all over her social media website. The twins may still be with Priscilla. Lisa Marie might have a hidden agenda with the pics (“See what a good mother I am. I’ll get my kids back any day now!”, trying to downplay her addiction issues) or she may just like to show people pictures of her kids like most parents. I found that people who had their children apprehended and placed with someone else were often in denial about the reasons for this and would blame everyone but themselves. As an employee of a child protection agency, I would get dumped on all the time by parents who weren’t willing to face their addiction issues and/or their inadequate parenting skills. I bet THEY posted nice pictures of their kids on Instagram and Facebook too. Sorry for the rant :(

    • Christin says:

      I didn’t think the photos meant anything regarding custody, either. I remember the hat guy (their dad) took them to a park last year, and a lady was with them in the pap photos. Supposedly that was the assigned companion, as in a supervised visit. Assumptions were similar then — He could be trying to portray the doting father.

  22. KicktheSticks says:

    Wow that eye makeup is really doing Lisa no favors. Her daughter is looking more and more like her. How anyone can get be so unaware of what’s going on as to get themselves $16 million in debt is beyond me. It seems like she has a great deal of issues. Sad.

  23. J.Mo says:

    I wonder what Priscilla Presley’s net worth is? A quick search says 50m, 100m, 150 or $160m. I’m glad for her grandchildren’s sake. I hope she’s left scientology.