Migos do not play when it comes to their money or what they feel they are owed.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, court documents were filed on behalf of the Atlanta trio in California Superior Court on Wednesday (July 15), accusing attorney Damien Granderson of taking "excessive fees" from the group without a written agreement. The lawsuit, which names Granderson's current law firm, Granderson Des Rochers, and his prior firm, Davis Shapiro, claims the attorney "robbed and cheated" the Migos out of millions of dollars. The complaint also alleges that Granderson failed to disclose conflicts of interest that came about from Granderson representing Quality Control Music, the record label Quavo, Offset and Takeoff are signed to.
Within the lawsuit, attorney Bryan Freedman, who represents Migos, says that Granderson had been representing the Culture II rappers from the early days when they first formed the group. He also argues that Granderson took advantage of Quavo, Offset and Takeoff and saw them as "easy targets to coax into one-sided deals that benefitted Granderson and Granderson's high-priority client, Quality Control Music." Freedman adds that the Migos were unaware that Granderson represented QCM, which posed a conflict of interest as the lawyer's loyalty was with QCM executives Pierre "P" Thomas and Kevin "Coach K" Lee.
Freedman also says in the lawsuit that Granderson worsened the harm done to the trio by "negotiating a 2018 amendment to the exclusive label agreement between QCM and Capitol Records." This amendment resulted in "an extension of the exclusive recording agreement between QCM and Migos, which Granderson knew to contain terms that were unconscionable for the Migos."
In the agreement, Migos would be required to render services or make payments directly to Capitol Records if they were to cut ties with Quality Control Music. The negotiation, however, did not offer a financial incentive for Migos to benefit from them rendering services to Capitol.
"Granderson effectively prevented his other client—Migos—from ever being free of paying excessive compensation to QCM, from ever being signed to any other record label, and from ever obtaining negotiating leverage to secure reasonable terms in connection with the distribution of its musical recordings," Freedman adds.
Migos' attorney says Granderson owes his clients the millions of dollars in fees he's obtained from them. Additionally, the trio is suing for professional malpractice, breach of fiduciary duty, violation of California Business & Professions Code 6147 and 6148—which requires that contingency fee agreements are made in writing—unjust enrichment and declaratory relief. The Migos are also seeking a statement that indicates that their 5 percent contingent fee agreement is unfounded, restitution—in the amount of millions of dollars—and punitive damages.
Pierre "P" Thomas, CEO of Quality Control Music, has spoken out about the lawsuit, denying any involvement, affirming that he exercises ethical business practices.
"It is unfortunate that the same people that we have worked hard for, provided opportunities for, and championed for are now alleging that we have participated in any kind of immoral or unfair business practices or took advantage of them and their careers," P said in part.
Thomas went on to say that he will not allow his brand to be tarnished, alluding to the allegations made in the lawsuit. "I will not stand by and let Quality Control Music’s reputation and everything we have built and sacrificed be tarnished by allegations of unfair and unjust business practices…," he says. "I understand in this business that you are not always going to end with the people you started with. I say that to say, I am not forcing anybody to be in business with us that has a problem and cannot communicate and does not want to work as a unit. Everything is negotiable."
Migos haven't spoken publicly on the lawsuit just yet.
XXL has reached out to a rep for Migos and Quality Control Music for comment.
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