The singer Smokey Robinson has been singing for more than half a century. He’s earned millions in income from his amazing tunes, as well as royalties from hits that were made before most of us were even born. So, you can imagine his dimsay to find that his ex-wife feels that she has a right to a large percentag of his singing income over the years.
But the legal battle is over, according to theJasmineBRAND.com.
Robinson had sued Claudette Robinson, stating that her award of half of his song royalties was unfair and invalid. The two divorced way back in 1986, but she’s been able to cash checks from songs that were written as early as 1958. But Smokey says that according to the 1976 Copyright Act, she no longer has the right to his music after the songs are 35-years old.
As a result, Smokey began taking her name off the copyright documents, and was able to somehow claim that he’s the rightful owner to the music. This led to Claudette’s attorneys sending a cease and desist letter to Smokey, demanding that he stop removing her name and rights. That’s how the two ended up in court.
This situation makes you wonder. If a person never wrote a song and some of the songs were created before you were married, should they have rights to all future income from the music? It makes marriage a tough negotiation and some entertainers are opting out altogether. Read on.
Claudette later fired back at this lawsuit, claiming Smokey could reclaim his copyrights per the 1976 Copyright act, but she was still entitled to her50%cut from all of his music created between 1958-1985.
Claudette admits she had no part of writing any of the songs, but per their divorce settlement she was awarded the rights. However, she said that per their deal there is NO termination clause and Smokey can’t cut her out 30 years later.
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