After Brandy reaches $40,000 settlement with housekeeper, attorneys want their fees

A woman in a leather jacket and tight bodysuit sings into a microphone on stage
Brandy performs at the BET Awards in L.A. in June.
(Chris Pizzello / Invision / Associated Press)

R&B star Brandy has reached a settlement with her former housekeeper, who alleged age discrimination and more when she sued the singer-actor for more than $250,000 in March. Now the housekeeper’s attorneys want to get paid too.

News of the “Moesha” star’s $40,000 settlement with Maria Elizabeth Castaneda, a.k.a. Elizabeth Juarez, came via documents the former housekeeper’s attorneys filed Friday with the Los Angeles County Superior Court.

Kevin A. Lipeles and Thomas H. Schelly of the Lipeles Law Firm in El Segundo are seeking fees from $39,194.46 to $87,445.80, depending on the method the court chooses to determine what’s owed. Their filing suggests that as part of the settlement, Brandy (full name Brandy Norwood) has agreed to pay the amount determined by the court.

A hearing regarding the fees is set for Dec. 8.

Police told TMZ that they responded to an emergency call at Brandy’s home in Los Angeles on Tuesday.

Oct. 12, 2022


Castaneda worked for Norwood for nearly 20 years, making $125 a day, starting in September 2002 and continuing until she allegedly was fired on Feb. 25 of this year, according to documents filed previously with the court. She cooked, cleaned and did laundry.

In her civil complaint, 60-year-old Castaneda accused her former employer of age discrimination related to her firing, plus additional violations related to state-mandated breaks, meal periods, overtime and more.

Norwood’s lawyers argued in court papers that the performer, 43, wasn’t liable for age discrimination and failure to prevent discrimination under state laws because she didn’t regularly employ five people. They also said Castaneda voluntarily quit.

After a clip of rapper Jack Harlow not recognizing ‘Angel in Disguise’ by Brandy went viral, the influential R&B star quipped, ‘I will murk this dude in a rap.’

May 17, 2022

Castaneda initially sought compensatory damages of at least $250,000, general damages of at least $250,000, consequential damages of at least $97,500, additional damages totaling more than $54,000 and attorneys fees. It’s unclear when the $40,000 settlement was reached.

City News Service contributed to this report.