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Stevie Wonder victorious in music royalties lawsuit with late lawyer's widow

Published 28/11/2015

Stevie Wonder
Stevie Wonder

Stevie Wonder has won a lawsuit over music royalties.

Soul man Stevie Wonder has scored a legal victory over music royalties against the widow of his late lawyer.

Susan Strack, the widow of Johanan Vigoda, sued the Superstition star for $7 million (GBP4.4 million) earlier this year (15), claiming she was entitled to six per cent of royalties from his music as part of a contract he reportedly signed stipulating Vigoda's kin would receive the payments after his death.

Strack alleged Wonder attempted to have the clause amended years ago, but the dispute was never resolved before Vigoda died, and therefore she insisted the contract was still legally binding.

In September (15), the 65 year old launched a countersuit against Strack, claiming he did not agree to the provision and trusted Vigoda to leave it out of the legal papers because "he could not read any of the contracts that Vigoda negotiated and prepared" due to the fact that he is blind. Strack challenged Wonder's allegations, insisting her husband had recruited a witness to read out the contract in full to his client before allowing him to sign.

Last week (ends20Nov15), a judge dismissed Strack's lawsuit against Wonder.

The case is the second issue Wonder has had to deal with in court lately, after his divorce from fashion designer Kai Millard was finalised in October (15) after several years of processing in court.

The 65-year-old musician first married Kai in 2001, but the pair separated in 2009.

Wonder filed for divorce in 2012 and the Associated Press reported Superior Court Judge Christine Byrd officially recognised the split on Monday 5 October (15).

Wonder has two sons with Kai, including a 14-year-old and a 10-year-old.

According to the terms of the divorce, Wonder will share joint custody of the boys with Kai and the You Are the Sunshine of My Life singer will also pay $25,000 per month in child support. But TMZ also reported the agreement stipulates Wonder can only take the boys on tour with him “on a limited basis”. Wonder signed off on the papers with his thumbprint instead of a signature.

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