Jill Dillard (née Duggar) revealed just how much money her father, Jim Bob Duggar, made off of both of their family’s reality series while she and her siblings were paid next to nothing for their work.
Jill, 32, detailed the family’s contract with TLC in her recent memoir, Counting the Cost. According to the former reality star, Mad Family – Jim Bob’s company – was to be paid $50k per half hour episode and $65k per hour long episode. The payments would increase to $58k and $73k if the show reached four seasons. Jill and husband Derick Dillard calculated that Jim Bob, 58, was paid $8 million throughout the shows’ run on TLC.
“Over the years Pops had bought more and more properties, and his fleet of private aircraft now contained multiple airplanes, including one with ten seats,” the couple wrote. “There was no denying that he was a generous man who had helped a lot of people, but it was also true that he’d grown rich off the show and had fought hard to keep that under wraps. It was hard to face the reality that my own father had seemingly tricked me on the day of my wedding rehearsal into signing such a document.”
Back in June, during their appearance in Prime Video’s docuseries Shiny Happy People: Duggar Family Secrets, Jill and Derick, 34, described being “tricked” into signing legal documents the day before their 2014 wedding.
“I just saw the signature page. It was like on the end of the kitchen table. Like, ‘Hey, I just need you guys to sign these,’” Jill recalled. “Like everybody was signing them. We were literally running through the kitchen, and it was like whoever you could grab on the way through. I didn’t know what it was for.”
Derrick added, “What we found out later was that it was a commitment of your life for the next five years to the show.”
It wasn’t until two years later, when the couple was living in El Salvador and trying to live their lives off camera, that they were informed of what they had signed.
“My dad sends us the signature page along with, like, just the obligation section of the contract. I was like, ‘Somebody forged my signature. I’m sure of it,’” she continued. “And then I look at it and I’m like, ‘That is my signature.’ That’s when we realized that I had signed this the day before we got married. That’s not what I thought I was signing.”
The pair claimed that Jim Bob later agreed to pay them a “lump sum,” which Derick said amounted to “close to minimum wage.” They turned him down due to the contingencies attached to the money, saying, “In order to receive that, you had to sign another deal with my dad and his production company, Mad Family, Inc. It would be like forever. We were automatically like, ‘We’re done.’”
Now, the couple revealed that their financial qualms were “finally resolved” in January and they were paid $175k. “I never knew that victory could feel so hollow or so overwhelmingly sad,” Jill wrote.
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