HOLLY Willoughby cut a low-key figure as she headed to Dancing On Ice rehearsals today after it was revealed she’s facing a legal battle with her former agents.
The TV star was pretty in pink as she made her way to her car in London for the drive to the studio.
She clutched a coat across her chest and a handbag, and she covered her face with a black mask.
Dancing On Ice returns tonight after a week off air as bosses desperately tried to deal with the show’s injury crisis.
Meanwhile we revealed Holly is embroiled with her former agents in a bitter legal battle worth up to £10million.
The This Morning star, 40, has hired lawyers to fight demands for commission.
A source said: “No one wanted this to go legal but Holly won’t simply give away her hard-fought millions without a fight.”
Holly has hired top lawyers, whom she met last week, to help her hold on to her money.
The row centres on so-called sunset provisions by which agents collect commission from a celebrity who has left them.
They would seek a cut if Holly’s contracts with shows including This Morning and Dancing On Ice are continued.
A source said: “This is a sad finale to what was once a hugely successful partnership.
“But YMU seem unhappy she’s set up on her own and feel entitled to maximise a sunset provision to claim commission on the renewal of contracts.
“This means, if she signed a new three-year deal with ITV worth £10million, say, they’d be entitled to around £1.5million of it.
“This commission — around 15 per cent — would continue for years and years. In theory, Holly could be 65 and still paying out hundreds of thousands.
“She has no qualms in paying commission on jobs they previously helped her negotiate.
“From YMU’s side, they worked exceedingly hard on Holly’s behalf for years, helping her establish six-figure deals and contracts and this is simply business.
“No one wanted this to go to legal but Holly won’t simply give away her hard-fought millions without a fight.”
What’s a sunset clause
A SUNSET clause entitles an agent to continue to be paid a share of a client’s income on projects arranged before the star left.
For example, if the agent negotiates a TV show for their client they can argue that any renewal of that TV show contract allows them to collect commission because they brokered the original deal.
Sunset clauses are negotiated usually for a finite amount of time after the agreement with the agent finishes, this usually between three and five years after the talent has left the agent.
Entertainment lawyer John Reid, partner at law firm Russels, said: “Sunset clauses, also known as post term commission clauses, are provisions very commonly found in representation agreements between an agent and their client.
“They entitle an agent to continue to be paid a share of their client’s income on projects that the agent arranged or worked on for their client even after their working relationship has ended, the rationale being that whilst the client will continue to earn from those arrangements, so should the agent who put them in place.
“Typically the percentage share of income that the agent receives will reduce over time and then end after an agreed period, which is why they are called ‘sunset’ clauses.”
We revealed in August that Holly had launched Roxy Management, managing herself and employing only female staff.
The following month we revealed YMU had threatened her with legal action — but that both sides hoped to resolve the matter without it going to court.
A court battle could see Holly quizzed over her earnings.
Her spokesperson declined to comment.
We approached YMU for comment.