Elvis Presley Enterprises, which owns a 50% interest in the King's compositions, is suing music publisher Chrysalis Music Group, claiming as much as $5 million in owed royalty payments. In a lawsuit filed last week in New York Supreme Court, EPE says that Chrysalis has breached an agreement by failing to properly collect, account for and pay it owed money. EPE says that Chrysalis has improperly "co-mingled" its funds with other accounts.
According to an audit that EPE conducted, the plaintiff identified "significant and troubling problems," including a lack of internal control and documentation, foreign withholding taxes that were allegedly improperly deducted without taking advantage of exemptions and reductions, and not ensuring that compositions were properly registered with performance rights organizations.
The complaint alleges that the parties have been in communication over the last five years about the alleged underpayments with no satisfactory resolution.