Melissa Etheridge and Tammy Lynn Michaels’ legal battle has turned toward a disagreement over whether or not their children were used as “pawns” in their ongoing separation.
In court papers obtained by Access Hollywood and filed in Los Angeles Superior Court on Wednesday by legal counsel for Melissa Etheridge, the former couple dispute the circumstances of their various split petitions, as well as a trip to Boston that Melissa called “a ploy.”
“[Tammy], in a ploy to have me served… used our children as pawns,” Melissa stated in her declaration, dated July 9, claiming that she made a trip from New York to Boston to see the pair’s two children. However, she claimed that Tammy never arrived.
“[She] then asked me what room I was in, which I found strange because she usually just calls my cell phone,” Melissa said. After that, a man served her with what her lawyer described as “a Petition For Dissolution of Marriage and an Order to Show Cause” papers in her hotel room.
“Due to Respondent’s ploy to serve me under the guise of seeing our children, I might not be able to see our children until August 29, 2010, when I come back to Los Angeles from my tour,” Melissa said, requesting that the court dismiss Tammy’s “later filed Petition” and claiming her own paperwork had been filed first.
In Tammy’s own statement, also included in the documents obtained by Access, she declared, “no one has ever attempted to serve me with a Petition for Dissolution of Domestic Partnership,” and asserts that she did have Melissa served on July 6.
Melissa’s claim is that she filed first — and that the motion did not require serving Tammy.
This past Monday, TMZ reported that a judge denied Tammy’s request in court for $25,000 in legal fees after she claimed she was destitute. Melissa’s attorney, Neal Hersh, told People earlier this week that Tammy is “being well-provided for and then some, as are the children.”
Papers filed by Tammy noted that her monthly expenses include $6,000 rent, $1,500 for groceries and household supplies, $800 for eating out and $5,000 for clothes – in addition to $4,300 for childcare.
Tammy declared that her ex earns $600,000 to $750,000 per month.
In related news, Tammy’s blog, Hollywood Farm Girl, appears to have removed several posts that previously contained revealing facts discussing the couple’s failed relationship.