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Melissa Etheridge and Tammy Lynn Michaels split gets ugly in court

07/13/2010 by Kristina Lopez

FILE - In this April 18, 2007 file photo, singer songwriter Melissa Etheridge, left and Tammy Lynn Michaels arrive at the 24th Annual American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers Pop Music Awards in Los Angeles. (AP Photo / Gus Ruelas, file)

The gloves are off in the split between Melissa Etheridge and ex Tammy Lynn Michaels. On Monday, Michaels attorney claimed in a Los Angeles courtroom that Etheridge left her ex and their three year-old twins "destitute."

"[Tammy] is being completely supported by Melissa and has been since they separated," Etheridges attorney Neal Hersh told People. "Shes being well-provided for and then some, as are the children, which are Melissas first priority."

According to Hersh, Michaels has been receiving $2,000 a month in addition to paying the household bills and a car lease. In her original filing, Etheridge sought joint custody of the children and asked that the court not award financial support to Michaels. Michaels recently hit back filing papers seeking full custody of the children as well as spousal support.

The other week I had to borrow money from a friend, the actress wrote on her blog July 3, a day after Etheridge filed papers in court. Two weeks ago I had to scrape together $1.25 to pay for gas. I know she doesn't want to give me money.

The couple first split in early April this year, which Etheridge said publicly was mutual, but Michaels stated otherwise.

Melissa, 48 and Tammy, 35, exchanged vows in a commitment ceremony in the beachside community of Malibu in Los Angeles, California in September 2003. The two registered a domestic partnership in August 2005. Tammy gave birth to twins in 2006 through artificial insemination from an unnamed donor.

Etheridge also has a 13-year-old daughter and 11-year-old son born via a sperm donation from rocker David Crosby. Her ex-girlfriend, filmmaker Julie Cypher, has shared custody.

Tammy played snotty high school queen Nicole Julian in Popular from 1999 to the end of the show's run in 2001 and was billed by her maiden name Tammy Lynn Michaels. She also appeared on the shows Committed in 2005 and the L Word in 2004.

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