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UMG Seeks Dismissal of Class Action Lawsuit Over 2008 Backlot Fire

Universal Music Group filed a motion last week in the U.S. Central District Court to dismiss a class-action lawsuit against the 2008 fire that burned thousands of master recordings by industry legends. UMG claims that the statute of limitations has passed and that artists are not eligible for proceeds from insurance claims and so the suit should be dismissed. The lawsuit is seeking $100 million in damages for artists.As more details are come out, artists and music industry professionals want to know what the destroyed works were? Last week, UMG gave them an answer.”While it would be ideal if we could publish such a list, unfortunately, it’s not that simple,” Kraus wrote. “[T]here is no definitive list of what was destroyed in the fire because it affected both inventoried assets and those that were not inventoried.” Kraus is UMG’s senior vice president of recording studios and archive management.Nearly 500,000 assets were estimated lost in the fire by an independent report. Of those, UMG has identified 424, and over 275 artists and representatives have requested reviews of their works.No matter what UMG says, artists always can regain ownership of their master recordings from record companies. The bottom-line for the artists represented in the class-action lawsuit is that they have suffered a loss of profits.

– Excerpt from an article for LA Time by Randy Lewis. Find the full article here. 



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