Tom Girardi Claims Erika Jayne Knew About Legal Woes, Despite Her Defense Of Him

screenshot erika jayne real housewives of beverly hills
(Image credit: Bravo)

High profile L.A. lawyer Tom Girardi, who partly inspired the film Erin Brockovich, is embroiled in some serious legal troubles. Not only has he been accused of embezzling millions of dollars from creditors and clients, but his Girardi & Keese law firm is under a Chapter 7 bankruptcy investigation and he himself has been disbarred. In his first public statement since the ordeal began, Girardi seemingly indicated that his wife of 20 years, Erika Jayne, knew what was going on. The revelation comes as a shock after seeing Erika Jayne defend Girardi as recently as the latest episode of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, which she has starred in for the past six seasons.

Tom Girardi, 82, was caught in the crosshairs of paparazzi recently after leaving a lunch with friends (via Page Six). They asked him if his wife Erika Jayne, who filed for divorce in November 2020, knew anything about his legal and financial issues of late. Girardi only shared,

I think she does.

Now technically, Tom Girardi has been diagnosed with dementia in the wake of all his legal problems. He has even been put under a conservatorship, controlled by his brother Robert, and has been admitted into an assisted living care facility. So his statement about Erika Jayne could be easily misunderstood. But if he's claiming that she knew about the financial situation before it became public knowledge, then that directly contrasts Erika Jayne's defense of Girardi and herself on this season of the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.

In the latest episode of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, which aired just prior to Tom Girardi's claims, Erika Jayne was actually defending her husband somewhat. She shared with the other ladies that the decision to move Girardi into assisted living was because his family didn’t want “the stain” or “the public scrutiny” of his mental state. Erika Jayne stated on the show,

That just really bothered me. I'm ready to have a nervous breakdown. Regardless of what is going on with him legally, this is someone I was married to for 22 years. I can't be married to the man, but I certainly don't want him in some facility where he's not taken care of and discarded. That is just something that I don't feel is OK… Want to know who your friends are? Get old and go broke.

Erika Jayne has been adamant throughout this season on the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills that she knew nothing about Tom Girardi's business affairs and had no involvement in his alleged crimes. But a host of others, now including Girardi himself, have insinuated otherwise.

The lawyer for the trustee in the Chapter 7 bankruptcy case has suggested that there is evidence that Erika Jayne had some culpability, which is why she was sued recently for more than $25 million. Also, Real Housewives of New York alum Bethenny Frankel shared that she knew years ago about Tom Girardi's alleged misdealings and she even told an employee of Erika Jayne’s, as well as Andy Cohen. Erika Jayne’s own former co-star Camille Grammer shared on Twitter that she had heard rumors about the Girardis in 2019.

The list of people who contradict Erika Jayne's account of events only seems to be growing. Hopefully the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills’ reunion won’t be cancelled like New York’s – because Andy Cohen needs to ask the questions we’re all wondering.

Lauren Vanderveen
Movies and TV News Writer

Freelance writer. Favs: film history, reality TV, astronomy, French fries.