Judge Rules on Anne Heche's Son in Messy Estate Battle

Anne Heche's ex James Tupper lost a court decision after petitioning to become their son Atlas' guardian ad litem. The judge also denied Tupper's petition to oversee the 13-year-old's portion of Heche's estate until he turns 18. Heche was critically injured in a car crash on Aug. 5 and died at a Los Angeles hospital on Aug. 11. She was 53.

"We are pleased – but not surprised – with the court's ruling this morning denying James' petition to appoint himself guardian ad litem for Atlas," a representative for Homer Heche Laffoon, told Us Weekly Wednesday. "We look forward to the court resolving Homer's petition at the next hearing and, in the meantime, Homer will continue to diligently administer the Estate pursuant to his authority as Special Administrator." Laffoon, 20, is Heche's son with her ex-husband, Coleman Laffoon.

In September, Laffoon filed to take control of Heche's estate, but Tupper tried to reject that motion as Atlas' primary guardian. The former Revenge actor argued in legal documents that Laffoon was "not suitable" for the role because of his age and lack of personal income. Tupper also believed that Laffoon would not act "in his brother's best interest," noting that Laffoon refused to attend grief counseling with Atlas.

"This is particularly upsetting given that Atlas is 13 years old, was with his mother on the day of her death and he has reached out to Homer repeatedly," Tupper, 57, wrote in the court documents. "In fact, since their mother's death, Homer has not seen his brother, nor had contact with him." Laffoon denied Tupper's allegations, calling them "unfounded personal attacks."

Heche was married to Laffoon's father from 2001 to 2009. She was also in a long-term relationship with Tupper from 2007 to 2018. Tupper and Heche starred in several movies together, including The Last Word (2017) and Nothing Left to Fear (2013). According to court documents obtained by The Daily Mail, Heche's estate was worth $400,000 at the time of her death. The next court hearing in the estate battle is scheduled for Nov. 30, and Tupper's attorney was given until Oct. 20 to file an objection to Tuesday's decision.


On Aug. 5, Heche crashed her car into a home in the Mar Vista neighborhood of Los Angeles at a high speed. The building burst into flames and firefighters struggled to remove Heche from her vehicle. On Aug. 11, Heche's representative said she was not expected to survive because of an anoxic brain injury and she was only being kept on life support until organ donation recipients could be found. She was considered legally dead at that time but was not taken off life support until Aug. 14.