Carrie Underwood, Kelly Clarkson Owed Millions in American Idol Royalties: Lawsuit

Truth rating: 10
(Getty Images)

By Shari Weiss

(Getty Images)

Carrie Underwood and Kelly Clarkson are allegedly owed millions in unpaid royalties, according to a new lawsuit.

19 Recordings, the company that was founded by “American Idol” creator Simon Fuller and oversees the contestants’ record deals, claims Sony Music has been withholding royalties after conducting an extensive audit of Sony’s accountings.

Among the specific allegations is that Underwood, Clarkson, and other “Idol” stars such as Chris Daughtry and Clay Aiken, have been underpaid when it comes to digital streaming royalties.

19 Recordings further alleges that Sony has paid incorrect amounts on other products, such as music videos, compilation albums, and more ventures.

For its part, Sony reportedly claims the opposite — that it actually overpaid in some cases.

“We did not want to have to file this lawsuit, but Sony left us no choice, so this became necessary to protect our artists,” 19 Entertainment worldwide head of music Jason Morey tells THR.

The outlet notes that settlement talks failed before the lawsuit was filed in New York federal court on Thursday.

19 Recordings is now seeking at least $10 million in damages, though it’s unclear how much of that would go to each artist.

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