Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Billionaire Donald Bren, adult children square off in messy court battle

la-fi-brenBillionaire land developer Donald L. Bren has a reputation as a major political donor and a generous philanthropist. But two of his children from a former girlfriend are alleging that the Irvine Co. chairman was stingy with their child support.

Their years-long legal battle is expected to go to trial this week. Bren's children, Christie, 22, and David, 18, are seeking retroactive child support in the amount of $400,000 a month each.

The potentially massive payments are deserved, their attorney says, given the $3 million to $5 million per month they contend Bren was spending during years he would have been paying formal child support. Bren's attorney disputed that amount.

The bitter civil claim has proved to be a rare window into Bren's fortune.

In court records, former girlfriend Jennifer McKay Gold described a luxurious lifestyle, including a fleet of five jets with two full-time pilots, a 240-foot yacht with a crew, lavish homes in Bel-Air and Orange County, a ranch in Idaho and a large staff of servants.

Read the full story here.

-- Robert Faturechi

Photo: Donald Bren. Credit: Los Angeles Times

Comments () | Archives (11)

As a former employee of Jennifer , I always wondered where the money came from. She lived very lavishly, rented a huge house in Beverly Hills, and yet never worked. She used to sit around sipping chardonnay saying, "I had a rough day." A rough day of what? Yoga? Those kids were spoiled little brats when I was around.

Go Mr. Bren!!!

Hoping they take him to the cleaners. Dudes dough is currently advocating to restrict the Californias public access to fishing through his support of the "Bren Center of environmental studies" at UCSB. Place is a joke. The MLPA is a monied special interest process that is misguided. The epitome of environmentalist corruption.

Sorry, kids, how about you get out there and work for a living. The story doesn't say how much he already paid in child support; the woman didn't live in Beverly Hills raising those kids with no cash.

A couple of greedy little brats who do not wat to have to work for a living. In any case, $400,000 per month in child support each is an absolutely absurd amount. These kids grew up in Beverly Hills, so they obviously were not brought up poor. Their mother received large sums of money from Bren over the years as demonstrated by the fact that she never worked. I hope the courts tell these two brats to go out and find jobs and stop wasting the courts time with their frivilous claim.

I think most everyone is sick and tired of the the large collection of Jennifer McKay Gold-diggers (and offspring).

Sorry everyone but he DID father these children and IS responsible for their upbringing. Yes he does have lots of dough and his girlfriend is taking advantage of the situation, but it takes two to tango; now he must own up to his responsibilites.If he need to pay for their college so they can get out on their own, so be it. The mother is also responsible for setting aside some money to help aid their children along the way. Even after these children are grown, they will have to deal with their father's estate wheither he marries and has more children or not. They will be in his life on way or another for now on.

these kids need to be taught a lesson in life just as their mother does grow up and quit trying to live for free.hell it was bad enough watching your mother sit around on her ass and make nothing of her self while she had the chance .here's what is called tough love for you 2 kids and your mother get a job learn how to support yourself and if thats not what you 3 have in mind maybe your father should send the three of you to school to get further educated so u can work and earn your own,sorry but true your father has done his part in raising you and giving your mother the chance to be an at home mom for you 2 while you were growing up.now it's time the 3 of you get a job and stop the free ride

I have to say this made me laugh. I have been fighting with my ex-husband over a meesely 6,000 in past child support. It goes to show there are always bigger fish to fry in the court systems.

These comments hit the nail on the head! I knew Don's Dad Milton and stepmother Claire. Though he grew up privledged he always knew the value of a dollar. This seems to be GREED with a capital Gee. I hope the jusdge cuts what they have now!!!

awww i wish i was a girl so i could pop out a couple of kids then have other people watch them and collect millions in divorce settlements.

As an attorney, I have two thoughts. First, children have the right to share in their parents' lifestyles. Even if he was paying something in child support, if it was not a fair share of what he was earning at the time, retroactive child support may be in order. Just for comparison, I can think of one Western state that awards 18% of the non-custodial parent's income per child. Sheds a new light on her request if they can establish his income is what they claim it to be, doesn't it? Second, this case has been tied up in the courts for years. It's hard to say who may have caused the delay, but this isn't a case of kids not being happy with Dad. Rather, it sounds like Mom was pursuing her legal rights and got stonewalled.


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...


About L.A. Now
L.A. Now is the Los Angeles Times’ breaking news section for Southern California. It is produced by more than 80 reporters and editors in The Times’ Metro section, reporting from the paper’s downtown Los Angeles headquarters as well as bureaus in Costa Mesa, Long Beach, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, Riverside, Ventura and West Los Angeles.
Have a story tip for L.A. Now?
Please send to newstips@latimes.com
Can I call someone with news?
Yes. The city desk number is (213) 237-7847.


Get Alerts on Your Mobile Phone

Sign me up for the following lists: