Whether caused by bad spending habits or trusting the wrong financial manager, some celebrities lost their entire fortune and ended up in bankruptcy court. Find out more about how they lost their millions.

Discover the celebrities who went broke, despite earning a lot, and ended up having to change their lifestyle in order to pay their debts. The biggest riches to rags stories include the following celebs:


M.C. Hammer went from a fortune of $33 million to debts of over $13 million, but many celebrities didn’t learn anything from it and ended up in similar circumstances. This is one of the biggest celebrity bankruptcy cases of the ’90s.

Mc Hammersource

Lindsay Lohan

After a good start as a child star, Lindsay Lohan spent her money on partying and managed to lose her biggest source of income. Her accounts were seized in 2012 by the IRS for owing almost a million dollars in back taxes, but the redhead was bailed out by Charlie Sheen, who helped her solve her immediate financial issues.

Lindsay Lohansource


Even though she had many hits, Kelis ended up in a really bad situation. Some celebrities who went broke got lucky, similar to Kelis who ended up getting a lot of child support from rapper Nas, when she divorced him right before giving birth to his son. The singer has managed to curb her spending since and she’s currently touring to promote her new album “Food”.


Pamela Anderson

Sometimes celebrities go broke after simply investing too much money in their home. Pamela Anderson had to sell the home she was constructing in Malibu, after costs for the lavish mansion soared and she was faced with big tax bills she wasn’t expecting. “The house just enveloped me financially and I didn’t know how to handle it. It happens to a lot of people in Hollywood,” she later explained on Twitter.

Pamela Andersonsource

Nicolas Cage

Some celebrities who went broke manage to hang on to their millionaire lifestyle, but that comes at a cost. After having to pay $6 million in back taxes in 2009, Nicolas Cage barely escaped bankruptcy. The actor had to sell some properties, and decided to never turn down a part again.

Nicholas Cage

Betsey Johnson

Even though things seemed to be going well for the fashion designer after getting inducted into the Fashion Walk of Fame in 2002, Betsey Johnson was forced to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection a decade later. The New York based designer has financial troubles in the past, but always managed to keep her brand afloat.

Betsey Johnsonsource

Toni Braxton

How do you go from selling over 40 million albums to joining the list of celebrities who went broke? Toni Braxton has the answer. The singer filed for bankruptcy in 1998 and 2010.

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The first bankruptcy forced her to part with prizes possessions like her Grammys and American Music Awards, while the second occurred when Braxton reached debts of $50 million.

Toni Braxtonsource

Larry King

Before his famous TV show, Larry King was working in radio and as a newspaper editor. He filed for bankruptcy in 1978, with debts of over $350,000, but he managed to get himself back on track thanks to the debut of his show that same year.

Larry Kingsource

Sarah Ferguson

The Duchess of York struggled with her finances after divorcing Prince Andrew, but never really hit rock bottom until 2010. Phone-hacking tabloid “News of the World” caught the former royal on tape as she promised to give access to her ex-husband in exchange for £500,000, with a down payment of $40,000.

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Even though she managed to avoid bankruptcy, unlike other celebrities who went broke, Ferguson’s financial troubles and the “Cash for access” scandal meant that she wasn’t invited to the 2011 Royal Wedding.

Sarah Ferguson

Billy Joel

With three bankruptcies under his belt, Billy Joel only has himself to blame, even though the singer claimed that his ex-brother-in-law, Frank Weber, is responsible for the mismanagement of his fortune, and lost over $90 million.

Billy Joel

Stephen Baldwin

The black sheep of the Baldwin family, Stephen filed for a Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition in 2009, where court documents showed debts of over $2.3 million and assets or just $1.1 million. Like other celebrities who went broke, he also had to pay back taxes, after failing to pay his income taxes in 2008, 2009 and 2010.

Stephen Baldwin