"I asked her to show me where the money had gone… It started a war between the family."
Vanessa Amorosi was in court this week, engaging in a property dispute with her mother and arguing that her mother took control of her career from the early days, also allegedly controlling her finances.
Nine News reported that Amorosi sued her mother, Joyleen Robinson, in the Victorian Supreme Court for full ownership of two properties she bought. One property is an eight-hectare space in Narre Warren, while the other is Amorosi’s current California home.
In court, Amorosi claimed that Robinson told her not to trust anyone besides her mother with finances as her music career began taking off. “She was very fearful of people wanting to steal the money,” Amorosi said.
Robinson set up a trust fund for her daughter in 1999 to secure Amorosi’s income from record and ticket sales, royalties and more.
According to evidence given to the court, Robinson purchased the Narre Warren home, pulling $650,000 from the trust. Amorosi claimed that her mother bought the house before she even saw it and put her name down as a co-owner.
Amorosi also questioned where some of the money was going, claiming that there were years when she made “millions of dollars” (per ABC).
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The relationship between Amorosi and her mother became a feud in 2014 when Amorosi had to sell her first home in the US as she couldn’t afford the repayments. Describing the souring relationship between herself and Robinson, Amorosi said the money dispute “started a war between the family”.
“I couldn't get the answers to what had really gone down and why I was losing my house,” Amorosi told the court.
Amorosi claimed that her mother said Amorosi spent all the money and recommended she get home and get to work. She continued, “I asked her to show me where the money had gone … asking that question to my mum had my siblings very angry. It started a war between the family.
“It was made very clear to me that I was not welcome to come home.”
The trial continues next week when Robinson will give evidence to the court.
Last month, Amorosi was honoured with the Inspiration Award at the Australian Women In Music Awards. She also performed twice on the night.