updated 07/24/2012 AT 9:00 AM ET
•originally published 07/24/2012 AT 9:30 AM ET
The newest face at the judges’ table is taking home the biggest paycheck.
“Her deal is rumored to be just under $18 million for one year with an option to renew,” a source familiar with the negotiation tells PEOPLE.
Carey, 43, will reportedly be the highest paid judge on any reality show.