Karr's father and brother hired actor, author and producer Larry Garrison to represent them in any media deals and to help them find a top attorney to represent Karr, who is in a Los Angeles jail awaiting transfer to Colorado to face allegations he killed the girl in 1996.
Garrison told The Associated Press that while the family's film and book rights are secured, no money has changed hands yet. He said he promised the Karrs a portion of any money made by the effort.
"They're not looking for money for themselves," Garrison said. "They're looking to support John's boys' college education and to make sure all legal fees are covered."
Karr's brother, Nate Karr, confirmed to the AP on Wednesday that Garrison now represents the Karr family.
Pamela Paugh, JonBenet Ramsey's aunt, told René Syler of the CBS Early Show that she hopes a court would thwart any attempt for Karr to earn money from his role in the case.
Even if "we have to enact a law really quickly that would prohibit him from profiting from a book sale, movie deal, TV rights, anything," Paugh says.
Garrison has written and produced several news films and had minor acting roles. He said that the family will be looking for a well-known attorney to represent Karr.
"Right now he's got a public defender to represent him," Garrison said. "It's their desire to get someone high-level."
Garrison declined to say if the family has been in touch with Karr in jail.
Karr told reporters in Thailand on Sunday that he was present when JonBenet died and that her death was an accident. He did not specifically say he killed her.
Paugh told the Early Show that regardless of who the killer is, JonBenet's death "was no accident."
Boulder prosecutors have not disclosed their evidence against Karr. His family has insisted he was in Georgia at the time of the slaying.
Georgia attorney Gary Harris, who had represented Wexford and Nate Karr in recent days, had said that the family found a photo from Christmas 1996 that indicates Karr was in Atlanta, not Colorado at the time of Ramsey's death.
Harris no longer represents the Karr family, Garrison said, but a family photo has been turned over to Boulder authorities. He could not say what the photo shows.
"I can tell you they proclaim his innocence," Garrison said. "They feel he was not there at the time, that some of the statements made by the press are absurd."
He said the family is not looking to get rich off the story.
"These people are spiritually coming from the right place," Garrison said. "They're really good people. They're family-oriented. They're not greedy. They're looking for the spin to stop."
Karr agreed Tuesday to go to Colorado. In a two-minute court appearance he was impassive and his expression changed only once when he slowly closed his eyes as the judge recited the count of first-degree murder that Boulder prosecutors included in an arrest warrant.
CBS News legal analyst Andrew Cohen said he doesn't consider what Karr said in Thailand to be a confession, and Karr is not going to be able to plead guilty right away in Colorado.
"To plead guilty and have the judge accept the plea, there has to be a factual basis for it," Cohen said. "Prosecutors have to be convinced of that, and so does the judge."