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Video-game company sues Beyonce for breach of contract

Thousands of people across Texas are familiar with the popular singer Beyonce, but very few may be aware of the legal disputes she's been involved in since April 2011.

It all began in 2010 when the singer entered into a contract deal with Gate Five, a video game developer, who was planning to create a video game featuring Beyonce using state-of-the-art motion capture technology. According to Gate Five, developers had just begun to work on the game when the singer allegedly "demanded new compensation terms" just before abandoning the licensing deal on Christmas Eve 2010.

Gate Five immediately filed a lawsuit in 2011against the pop-star for breach of contract, pointing out that the contract had a termination clause but only if a certain level of financing was not obtained by a specific date. According to Gate Five, an investor had agreed to "inject $19.2 million in financing" at the time the singer backed away from the agreement, proving that they were upholding their end of the agreement.

Sources claim that Beyonce has attempted to have the case thrown out on two separate occasions. The New York appeals court has denied her requests however, pointing out that these are "triable issues" on whether she breached the contract agreement or not.

Court documents indicate that Gate Five is demanding "the hundreds of millions of dollars in profits that [they] could have realized if [Beyonce] had honored the agreement."

Though we may not have the same backlash that Beyonce could face because of the lawsuit, we can understand what types of difficulties someone could face if they were involved in a breach of contract. In most cases, if the amount is small enough-generally $3,000 to $7,500 depending on the state-the parties involved are able to settle in small claims court with relative ease. It's when there are larger amounts, or parties who can't agree on the specifics of the breach that can complicate things and turn them into messy legal issues. Avoiding these types of situations may not always be possible, but if they are it can save you from potentially damaging consequences in the future.

Source: euroweb.com, "Game Developer's Lawsuit Against Beyonce Will Stand," Nov. 20, 2012

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