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Michelle Bombshell McGee

Norman Scott/Startraksphoto.com

Why is it necessary for mistresses of famous men to hire lawyers after their affairs have been discovered?

—Susan, Nashville, via the Answer B!tch inbox

Well, you can't exactly score a big, fat shut-up check without someone to do your negotiating, now, can you? And that's the idea, attorneys tell me: money.

So how much are we talking? Well ...

We know that Rachel Uchitel canceled a press conference about Tiger Woods amid reports that she was negotiating a $1 million silence settlement with Team Tiger. Uchitel's attorney? Gloria Allred, the same high-profile name behind porn star Joslyn James, a reputed Woods mistress, and behind the reputed fourth mistress of Jesse James. (Allred's daughter also told The Early Show that her mom would never cancel a press conference unless a hefty payout was involved—"at least a million dollars.")

When it comes to these reputed mistresses, "This is their only five seconds of fame," attorney Faye Nia of Nachshin & Langlois explains. "Paparazzi, book deals, all kinds of people are approaching them, and they want to milk it all the way, and they need a lawyer to negotiate all that."

There are other reasons too, and I've got them, courtesy of lawyer James E. McMillan, who says he is currently working with LaTosha Smith, one of the women involved in the Shaq marriage mess.

"A good attorney would ensure that any misinformation that comes out as a result of an investigation or a leak is corrected immediately," McMillan tells me, "or that the publication responsible for disseminating the misinformation is held liable. Typically lawyers use a strong cease-and-desist letter for this purpose."

Lastly, McMillan says, there is, literally, image control.

"If there are pictures or a video where the mistress's private images are being exploited, an attorney can assist in having this material removed from any publication," McMillan says.

Right. And then republished—for the right price.

________

Get the latest on Jesse James latest mystery woman here.