NEWARK, N.J. - Singer Dionne Warwick claims in a recent bankruptcy filing that she owes nearly $10 million in back taxes and her monthly expenses exceed $20,000.
The South Orange resident and singer of classics such as "Walk On By," `'I Say a Little Prayer" and "Do You Know the Way to San Jose" filed a Chapter 7 petition in U.S. bankruptcy court in New Jersey last Thursday.
In the filing, the 72-year-old Warwick listed liabilities that include nearly $7 million owed to the Internal Revenue Service for the years 1991 to 1999 and more than $3 million in business taxes owed to the state of California.
Warwick, a cousin of the late Whitney Houston, also listed $20,950 in monthly income from royalties, retirement income and a contract with Culver City, Calif.-based Star Girl Productions. Her monthly expenses total $20,940 and include $5,000 for housekeeping/housesitting.
Warwick's publicist said that the singer was victimized by bad financial management in the 1990s and that she has paid back the actual amount of the taxes, but penalties and interest have accumulated over the years.
"In light of the magnitude of her tax liabilities, (Dionne) Warwick has repeatedly attempted to offer re-payment plans and proposals to the IRS and the California Franchise Tax Board for taxes owed," Kevin Sasaki said in an email Tuesday. "These plans were not accepted, resulting in escalating interest and penalties. Although the actual amount of back taxes owed has been paid, the resulting penalties and interest has continually accrued."