Rihanna Sues Accounting Firm
Pop singer Rihanna has filed a lawsuit against her former accounting firm, Berdon LLP, claiming the firm drained tens of millions of dollars in revenues from her tours.
The singer filed suit Thursday under her real name, Robyn Fenty, according to the Associated Press, alleging that the firm took 22 percent of the total revenue from four tours over five years while only paying her 6 percent. She claimed the firm paid itself a percentage of the gross tour income, while failing to put in place financial controls to encourage her to rein in her own expenses. A Berdon spokesperson said the firm does not comment on pending litigation.
Rihanna also blamed the firm for an audit of her taxes by the Internal Revenue Service, claiming she needed to spend a significant amount of money to correct the firm’s errors and negligence.
She claimed in her lawsuit that she had hired Berdon in 2005 when she was only 16 years old and was trying to begin her singing career in Barbados.
Rihanna alleges that the firm breached its agreements, engaged in misconduct and malfeasance, created entities without considering the effect on her taxes, paid itself excessively large commissions, neglected to document revenue and expenses or implement a proper budget. The Grammy-winning singer also claimed the firm gave her poor advice when she purchased a home for $6.9 million in 2009 and failed to warn her that she was losing money on her tour and could not afford the expensive home. In addition to her former accounting firm, Rihanna is also suing two former accountants from Berdon, Michael Mitnick and Peter Gounis, according to the New York Post.
The “Disturbia” singer discharged the firm in September 2010 and said she fared much better during her “Loud” tour last year, in which her net profits surpassed 40 percent of the tour’s total revenues.