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From robes to riches: Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor nets over $3 million from memoir
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The justice on Friday reported that she’s received more than $3 million in advance payments for her best-selling memoir, “My Beloved World.”
Her annual financial disclosure forms show that Knopf Doubleday Group paid Sotomayor $1.925 million in 2012 in anticipation of her book. This comes in addition to the $1.2 million in advance payments she received from the publisher in 2010.
The book was first released in January and has been on the New York Times’ nonfiction best-seller list, including four weeks in the No. 1 spot.
The 58-year-old justice, who was the first Hispanic on the Supreme Court and President Barack Obama’s first high court nominee, has traveled the country this year promoting her memoir, but any royalties and speaker fees won’t show up until future disclosure forms.
Her newfound wealth contrasted with her more austere lifestyle before joining the Supreme Court. In her first financial disclosure form, Sotomayor reported she was making payments on thousands of dollars in dental bills and credit cards bills with bank accounts worth no more than $65,000.
But in just the past year, following the publication of her book, Sotomayor has palled around with Hollywood stars like Oprah Winfrey, bought a new home in Washington’s fashionable U Street district, rented out her New York City property and received gifts of books, art, jewelry and “trinkets” from fans, more than two years after her confirmation in front of the Senate. She also reported having more than $1 million in a bank account and credit card debt of as much as $60,000 last year.
Sotomayor wasn’t the only justice to have book-related finances reported in their disclosure forms. Justice Antonin Scalia reported $63,991 in book royalties following the June 2012 publication of his “Reading Law: The Interpretation of Legal Texts,” which was co-authored with Bryan A. Garner. Justice Stephen Breyer also reported that he made more than $30,000 in royalties in 2012 for his previous books.
Justice Samuel Alito received an extension until August to file his disclosure form.
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