SANTA FE — An Arizona consulting firm has sued Val Kilmer, seeking more than $128,000 in back fees.
The suit was filed in state District Court in Las Vegas, N.M., last fall but has been transferred to federal court in California.
Kilmer has responded in court and says he doesn’t owe the money.
The lawsuit from Executive Consulting Inc. claims Kilmer, who for many years owned a ranch on the Pecos River just south of the town of Pecos, failed to pay for consulting services he contracted for with company president Ellen Colemire.
Colemire was hired in 2011, according to the lawsuit, to assist Kilmer “with the financial difficulties he was experiencing. …”
Kilmer put his 5,300-acre ranch on the market in 2009 for $33 million. The next year, in 2010, the IRS slapped a lien on the property, claiming Kilmer owed nearly half a million dollars in unpaid taxes.
Also in 2010, Kilmer sought and was granted permission from the San Miguel County Commission to operate three guest houses on the property.
Kilmer finally sold all but 141 acres of the ranch in October 2011 for $18.5 million.
According an affidavit filed in the Executive Consulting lawsuit, Colemire met with Kilmer several times. But in the affidavit, Kilmer said that while he met with Colemire in both Pecos and Los Angeles early in 2010, he subsequently decided to replace her with another consultant.
Kilmer also said he doesn’t owe Colemire or Executive Consulting Inc. any money.
Almost immediately after the lawsuit was filed, Kilmer began trying to get the case transferred out of New Mexico. Finally, earlier this year, he successfully petitioned the court to assign the case to the federal district court for the 9th Circuit, which includes California.
The lawsuit is still pending.
Kilmer’s New Mexico attorney, Julia Broggi, confirmed the case has been moved to federal court but declined to comment further.
Michael Pottow, attorney for Executive Consulting, did not return phone calls seeking comment.
— This article appeared on page C2 of the Albuquerque Journal