On Wednesday, a judge ruled in favor of Katy Perry’s business manager, Bernie Gudvi, regarding the sale of the Montecito home acquired on behalf of the pop star in 2020. The legal dispute arose when Carl Westcott, founder of 1-800-Flowers and seller of the mansion to Perry, filed a lawsuit against Gudvi, alleging that he lacked the capacity to sign the transaction due to a recent surgery and brain disorder.
In his lawsuit seeking a rescission of the contract, contract cancellation, and declaratory relief, the 84-year-old Army veteran claimed he was not in the right mental state to enter into a real estate contract. However, Judge Joseph Lipner determined that Westcott failed to provide convincing evidence supporting his claim of incapacity.
The Westcotts have decided not to appeal the judge’s decision. The trial was bifurcated, with the damages phase scheduled for February. During this phase, Perry will testify about the alleged loss of rental income due to the litigation.
In response to the judge’s ruling, Carl’s son, Chart, expressed dissatisfaction, stating, “Where the judge’s ruling may follow the letter of the law, it shows that the law has no spirit.” He anticipated Perry’s testimony and suggested possible sanctions for perjury.
Perry’s attorney issued a statement emphasizing that the judge found Westcott unable to prove anything other than being of sound mind during the property sale negotiations. The attorney anticipates concluding the matter during the scheduled damage trial phase in February.
Judge Lipner, in his ruling, discredited Westcott’s psychiatrist expert and highlighted evidence supporting Westcott’s capacity to enter the contract. This evidence included testimonies from witnesses who interacted with Westcott during the negotiation period, his coherent written communications, and medical reports from his doctors confirming his capacity before and after the sales contract.