Wendy Williams’ financial adviser claims she’s a “prisoner in her own home” and has been forced to hire armed security to protect her family from death threats.
Lori Schiller exclusively tells Page Six that ever since the former daytime talk show host publicly claimed she canned the Wells Fargo adviser, she’s been “through hell.”
“I have 24-hour armed police officers outside of my house kind of vetting everyone that comes to my front door. It’s starting to affect my life. I’m a prisoner in my own home,” she tells us, adding that her continued work on the account has been putting her family “at risk.”
“I’m kind of living in my own personal hell here,” she says.
Schiller tells Page Six that despite Williams’ claims, she was never fired and is still the lead adviser on the account amid the talk show host’s lawsuit against the bank.
She says she’s been having “all positive” conversations with Williams, with whom she was “very close” for 12 years.
Despite the public lashing from 58-year-old Williams following Wells Fargo’s February claims that she needs a guardian, Schiller says she has been lauded internally by the bank for the work she’s done to protect Williams from those who mean her financial harm — but the bank won’t publicly support her.
“All I’ve done was follow the law to the tee, and I’ve been praised by Wells Fargo for all of my efforts,” Schiller says, noting that the bank is footing the bill for her home security. “I’ve given them ample time and come to my defense and make a statement and for some reason they just are putting it to the side.”
Schiller and her attorney, Anthony Mango, who was also present during the phone conversation, said that there is allegedly a gag order in place within the lawsuit, which since has been sealed, so they couldn’t discuss specifics about the ongoing case. She did, however, note that Wells Fargo, not Schiller, pursued the guardianship over Williams because of a “pattern” of behavior that made issues “apparent.”
“Wells Fargo took the lead,” she says. “I just don’t think people understand the complexities of what goes on behind the scenes.
“It’s a really bad time for guardianships,” Schiller adds, alluding to Britney Spears’ recent freedom from her own conservatorship.
Schiller explains that the guardian, who was appointed shortly after Wells Fargo’s initial filing, serves as a conduit between Williams and Wells Fargo. The “Wendy Williams Experience” author has access to her money that is meant to support her livelihood, but the guardian will object to a request that appears to be from someone exerting “undue influence” over Williams.
“While we are unable to discuss employee matters, the financial well-being of our clients is at the heart of everything we do,” a spokesperson for Wells Fargo told Page Six on Friday.
Williams’ former attorney, LaShawn Thomas, told Page Six in May that the shock jock was “not in agreement” with the guardian.
“Wendy has been very clear that she does not want a financial guardian to tell her what she can and cannot do with her money,” Thomas said.
Thomas added that Williams “feels that she is capable” of hiring her own team who would work for her “and not the court.”
“Wells Fargo has no questions and answers regarding my money. This is not fair. And Lori Schiller and Wells Fargo has this guardianship petition about keeping me away from my money,” Williams said in a video posted to social media.
“This is not right and this is not fair.”
Just months later, however, Williams would check back into a rehab facility to treat her alcohol addiction issues.
“I’m being blamed for her being in rehab,” Schiller claims.
Williams completed treatment in October, with her rep, Shawn Zanotti, telling Page Six at the time that she had returned home and was “healing.”
“Thank you to my fans for your love, support and many prayers, I am back and better than ever,” Williams added in a statement of her own.
While Williams, who was photographed this week back in her iconic purple chair, is doing “better than ever,” Schiller tells us that serving as both the bank’s and Williams’ scapegoat has taken its toll.
“I do not want to leave Wells Fargo. I want to make it work,” Schiller says. “I’ve given them 10 months of my life to come to my defense. They need to do the right thing. It’s really more about my future career to grow my career from here, to set the record straight.
“It’s not fair that I’m the target of death threats,” Schiller says. “That my 11-year-old daughter has to sleep in my bed [out of fear].”
Reps for Williams didn’t immediately return Page Six’s request for comment.