Sumner Redstone Family Settles Legal Battles With Mogul's Ex-Companion

Manuela Herzer will pay Redstone $3.25 million and agrees she has no say in decisions concerning him, ending three years of legal fights just days before another trial was set to begin.
Rodrigo Vaz/FilmMagic; Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for PSLA
Sumner Redstone, Manuela Herzer

Sumner Redstone has reached a settlement with his former companion Manuela Herzer, ending a three-year legal battle just days before a second trial over his estate plans was set to begin. 

The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed the agreement ends a string of lawsuits between the Redstone family and Herzer, which range from elder abuse to invasion of privacy, and she will repay $3.25 million in money previously given to her by Redstone. Herzer first sued in 2015 after being kicked out of the mogul's Beverly Park mansion and being removed as the person in charge of his health-care directive.

"Any and all prior agreements, pledges, and commitments of any kind or nature by, between, or on behalf of the Herzer Parties, The Herzer Foundation, the Redstone Parties, the Redstone Foundation, the Redstone Trust, and/or the NA Trust are hereby cancelled, terminated, null and void, and of no legal effect whatsoever, except for gift taxes that have already been paid," states the agreement, which also explains that Herzer acknowledges she has no right to participate in "any decisions of any sort relating in any way" to Redstone. 

The parties will pay their own legal fees and also agreed to stop any future litigation before it begins by providing each other with "fullest and broadest release of claims permitted by law." 

This comes after the court in December granted a request from Redstone's grandson Tyler Korff to appoint a guardian ad litem to oversee the litigation, amid accusations that the 95-year-old mogul wasn't the person pursuing the legal fight. While Redstone's competence and susceptibility to undue influence have been the cornerstone of the legal fight with Herzer, judge David Cowan last month made clear the decision to appoint an independent attorney was because of Redstone's severe speech impediment and nothing else. 

Redstone and Herzer nearly reached a settlement back in 2016 before the first trial, which Cowan ended early after he viewed the mogul's video deposition in which he called Herzer a "fucking bitch."

The agreement among Herzer, her family, Sumner Redstone, Shari Redstone, Tyler Korff, Brandon Korff and others resolves the myriad of legal fights over alleged elder abuse, invasion of privacy, a Manhattan apartment and the mogul's estate plans, as well as a RICO claim. The settlement was first reported Tuesday by The Wall Street Journal.

Redstone will still ask the court to affirm the validity of his current estate plan.