Australian pop group 5 Seconds Of Summer is being sued for $ 2.5million (£ 1.86million) by their former management company, YM&U Group, for alleged breach of contract.
According to court documents seen by Billboard, the group reportedly refused to pay the YM&U group commissions owed to them for “several lucrative deals it negotiated on behalf of the group,” including a record deal with BMG worth $ 10 million (7 , £ 5million) and a sales agreement with the Bravado International Group set at $ 1.5million (£ 1.1million).
The four members of the group are listed as defendants, along with their current manager, Benjamin Evans (who is said to have encouraged the group in their conduct), and their 5SOS Touring arm. With representation from attorneys Howard King and Stephen Rothschild, YM&U is seeking $ 2.5 million in damages, as well as an undisclosed amount of punitive damages from Evans in particular.
According to the documents, which were filed last Friday (December 17) in California Superior Court, King and Rothschild allege that Evans “acted with fraud, malice or oppression” in helping 5 Seconds Of Summer avoid paying YM&U what was due to them.
The lawyers allegedly claimed that “Evans and the other 5SOS advisers believed that by refusing to pay [the YM&U Group] anything for its months of service, 5SOS could push [them] to substantially discount what 5SOS owed ”.
5 Seconds Of Summer has been signed with YM&U for seven months, starting in February of this year and ending in September. The company alleges the group severed ties with them shortly before signing their deal with BMG, with both sides mutually agreeing that YM&U would receive 15% of the group’s $ 5.5 million advance ( £ 4.1million) from the label, for a total of $ 825,000 (£ 616,400).
It is alleged that 5 Seconds Of Summer then attempted to evade their obligations after their lawyer allegedly sent YM&U a letter stating that the group would not pay any part of the money owed. “The only reason given was the frivolous assertion by 5SOS’s lawyer that the timing of the complainant’s termination by 5SOS somehow allowed 5SOS to refuse to pay the complainant for the valuable services that it had instigated the complainant on. to provide “, indicates the file.
Evans was hired as the group manager before joining YM&U, and returned to work with the group after they left the agency.
NME has contacted representatives for 5 Seconds Of Summer for comment.