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Stepney's Family Wants Royalties
Highest Court N.D. Illinois
Year Ended 2011
Plaintiffs Estate of Artist(s)
Music Publisher(s)
Trust of Artist(s)
Defendants UMG Records
Other Stepney, Charles
Short Description Charles Stepney was the head producer at Chess Records, the pivotal Chicago-based record label immortalized in the movie "Cadillac Records," for some years during the late 1960s and 1970s, after time as a staff producer. Under his agreement with Chess, Stepney was to be paid a 3% royalty on 90% of the records released containing only his material, and half that percentage on foreign sales. However, when he died in 1976, he had only been provided with two accounting statements, which should have been tendered twice a year. His rights passed to his wife through his estate, and his wife died in 2008, after which Stepney's children, in the name of his estate and their newly-created trust, sued UMG--Chess's successor-in-interest--for breach of contract and fiduciary duties and multiple equitable remedies. In this opinion, the court ruled only on three counts of the complaint, dismissing Plaintiffs' claims for breach of fiduciary duty, because no fiduciary relationship was alleged, and constructive trust, because it is a remedy and not an independent cause of action. However, Plaintiffs' claim for unjust enrichment was not dismissed. Other causes of action were not discussed. - LSW

Legal Issues
Business Associations Fiduciary Relationships Fiduciary Duties
Contracts Breach Payment & Performance
General Equitable Actions Unjust Enrichment
  Equitable Remedies Accounting
    Constructive Trust


Opinions Estate of Stepney v. UMG Recordings, Inc.
2011 WL 2119130
N.D. Illinois , May 26, 2011 ( No. 10_cv_8266 )


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Related Searches Parties
Estate of Artist(s) ( Plaintiff )
Music Publisher(s) ( Plaintiff )
Stepney, Charles ( Other )
Trust of Artist(s) ( Plaintiff )
UMG Records ( Defendant )

Legal Issues
Business Associations / Fiduciary Relationships / Fiduciary Duties
Contracts / Breach / Payment & Performance
General / Equitable Actions / Unjust Enrichment
General / Equitable Remedies / Accounting
General / Equitable Remedies / Constructive Trust

Courts
N.D. Illinois (highest court)


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