Jesse Williams has asked the court to reduce his $40,000 monthly child support payments to ex-wife Aryn Drake-Lee since he’s no longer staring in the hit television series “Grey’s Anatomy.”
Williams stepped away from the ABC medical drama in May 2021 after 12 seasons and now stars in the Broadway revival of Richard Greenberg’s play “Take Me Out.” While he might be happier in the Broadway environment that happiness won’t make up for the $40k child support payments he still owes every month.
“I am requesting the Court reduce the child support to a reasonable amount I can afford given the significant reduction in my income and the now fluctuating nature of my income,” the actor said.
Williams claimed in the documents that he currently makes $1,668 per week compared to his grand total of $6.2 million and $183,000 in residuals. The hit television series was his main source of income but argued that he can no longer afford the costly bill each month since leaving.
“Child support was also based on my other sources of income which included my ‘Grey’s’ residuals for shows I appeared in during the marriage, and after Aryn and I separated, as well as sporadic income from occasional smaller acting, endorsement or appearance work,” he continued. “All of my additional sources of income were/are far less than my former episodic fees from ‘Grey’s.’”
Williams believes his ex-wife Aryn Drake-Lee should return to her job to help support the children. He stated that she holds a credential as a real estate agent in New York.
However, on the other hand Aryn Drake-Lee stated Williams’ willful departure from the show is his own doing and is an excuse for him not to step up. Her lawyer also pointed out the fact that Aryn gave up her thriving career in New York for him more than 13 years ago, to relocate to California to support and focus on building his acting career and businesses.
“Jesse left a favorable, coveted, high-paying position on a successful T.V. show, in pursuit of his ‘own path,’ and now seeks to shed his family responsibilities,” it read.
Williams and ex-wife Aryn Drake-Lee share joint custody of their two children: Sadie, 8 and Maceo, 6. The two separated in April 2017, but they did not finalize their divorce until October 2020.The divorce was far from cordial as the pair were ordered to attend Between Two Parents, an education course for “high-conflict” parents in April 2021.