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DUCHESS LACKS FUNDS, HIRES DIANA'S LAWYER

The Duchess of York is short of money, finding it tougher to sell her celebrity status abroad and facing a solitary Christmas. But next year could be better.

According to recent newspaper articles, the former Sarah Ferguson has hired Princess Diana's lawyer hoping to get a new, and much bigger, divorce settlement.

Prince Andrew's 38-year-old ex-wife and her daughters -- Princesses Beatrice, 9, and Eugenie, 7 -- arrived Tuesday at Sandringham, Queen Elizabeth II's estate in eastern England, where the royal family traditionally spends Christmas.

On Tuesday, the duchess' office would neither confirm nor deny that she has hired Anthony Julius, the lawyer who secured a reported $28.2 million settlement for Diana from Prince Charles.

The duchess settled for $1.3 million, of which $830,000 is earmarked for a house, and the rest is gone.

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