Why Bindi Irwin Might Not Get Paid For Dancing With The Stars

Bindi Irwin has been crushing it out on Dancing With The Stars, but behind-the-scenes, things have not been going so smoothly. Reports this morning indicate that Bindi Irwin is having trouble with her Dancing With The Stars contract. Since she’s a minor, lawyers from the show had to submit her contract to an L.A. Superior Court judge, who rejected the document for what is probably the most awful reason I can think of: Bindi hasn’t gotten a proper form signed by her dad Steve Irwin. That’s probably because Steve Irwin died back in 2006.

The courts are currently dealing with the case, although it's unclear if Bindi Irwin and her family have simply been asked to deal with bringing forth a death certificate or if the judge doesn’t have any idea who Steve Irwin is (or that he died years ago). TMZ is reporting that Bindi’s mother, Terri, has already signed paperwork indicating that the money her daughter earns on Dancing With The Stars will not go to mom. You’d think that would be enough to get Bindi her earnings, but apparently it's not. The court system in Los Angeles is known for putting people through a lot of red tape, and this one’s a doozy.

It’s already pretty awful to lose a parent, particularly when you are as young as Bindi was when she lost her dad. She’s already paid tribute to the more-famous Irwin several times during Season 21 of DWTS, most notably when she did the tango with partner Derek Hough to AC/DC’s “You Shook Me All Night Long,” a track that was one of her dad’s favorites. Being reminded of her dad while performing likely gives Bindi a good feeling, but having to deal with stuff like producing a death certificate probably falls in the “less warm feeling” category related to her dad.

Granted, I’m hopeful Bindi Irwin will get the paperwork sorted out at some point. Her sick 8-week run has already ensured her that she will walk away with at least $230K for appearing on the show—that’s right, unlike a lot of other reality shows, the competitors get paid each week depending on how long they make it on the show. Those who sign-up are guaranteed $125k and then an additional few thousand each week that they remain in the competition. The winner also nabs the elusive Mirrorball trophy.

Bindi’s actually been a pleasure to watch this season. It helps that she has one of the best partners on the show in Derek Hough, but she’s also good enough in her own right that she could take the whole thing home. (Remember when they nailed that incredible Dirty Dancing move?) But she won’t pocket the money until the Los Angeles court system can figure out how to get information from her dead parent.

In the meantime, you can catch new episodes of ABC’s long-running reality competition series on Monday nights at 8 p.m. ET.

Jessica Rawden
Managing Editor

Jessica Rawden is Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. She’s been kicking out news stories since 2007 and joined the full-time staff in 2014. She oversees news content, hiring and training for the site, and her areas of expertise include theme parks, rom-coms, Hallmark (particularly Christmas movie season), reality TV, celebrity interviews and primetime. She loves a good animated movie. Jessica has a Masters in Library Science degree from Indiana University, and used to be found behind a reference desk most definitely not shushing people. She now uses those skills in researching and tracking down information in very different ways.