Michael Oher‘s lawyers claim he was “kept in the dark” about his finances for almost 20 years, in a new legal filing, according to People. The 37-year-old former NFL player requested that Sean and Leigh Anne Tuohy file an initial accounting of his finances within two weeks, in the filing, and asked the court to set a deadline for the couple to clarify what money has been made off his name since the release of The Blind Side in 2009, the outlet further claims. The film, which made $300 million at the box office, stars Sandra Bullock, Quinton Aaron, and Tim McGraw, and was inspired by his life. Michael claims all four Tuohy family members, including Sean, Leigh Anne and their two children, made $250,000 outright from the movie, and an additional 2.5% in residuals, but he made nothing, according to ESPN.
Michael’s lawyers’ latest claim and Michael’s latest request comes after he filed a petition in the Tennessee Shelby County probate court on Aug. 14, that asked to end his conservatorship with the Tuohys, which began in 2004, when he was 18. Michael told the court that he wasn’t aware he was under the conservatorship until Feb. 2023, and claimed the Tuohys tricked him into the legal arrangement by telling him there was no difference between a conservatorship and an adoption.
The 2004 conservatorship put the Tuohys in charge of Michael’s financial decisions, even though he had “no known physical or psychological disabilities,” which is what would usually lead a legal adult to seek a conservatorship. Conservators are legally required to file an initial accounting of the individual’s finances when the legal arrangement begins, and are then required to make annual filings with the court for as long as the conservatorship lasts.
“[The Tuohys] have failed to file the first accounting and have failed to timely file a single accounting for the last 19 years,” Michael’s attorneys reportedly wrote in the new filing on Monday. They also claim the Tuohys never received an extension for filing the accounting, giving them no reason to not file.
After filing his legal petition, Michael gave a statement to The New York Post. “I am disheartened by the revelation shared in the lawsuit today,” he said in the statement. “This is a difficult situation for my family and me. I want to ask everyone to please respect our privacy at this time. For now, I will let the lawsuit speak for itself and will offer no further comment.”
Sean also spoke out to The Daily Memphian after news of the petition broke. “It’s upsetting to think we would make money off any of our children. But we’re going to love Michael at 37 just like we loved him at 16,” he said. “Everybody in the family got an equal share [of money from the movie], including Michael. It was about $14,000, each. We were never offered money; we never asked for money. My money is well-documented; you can look up how much I sold my company for.”
Sean also said he and Leign Anne were willing to end the conservatorship, if that’s what Michael wants. “I want whatever Michael wants,” he said. “We’re not in this for anything other than whatever he wants. If he’d have said, ‘I don’t want to be part of the family anymore,’ we’d have been very upset, but we absolutely would have done it.”