Kanye West Facing $30 Million In Damages And Two Class-Action Lawsuits
Kanye West is being sued for $30 million for allegedly mistreating and failing to pay staff at his Sunday Service shows.
Approximately 800 staff members – both performers at the show and behind-the-scenes crew – filed two class-action lawsuits against the rapper in summer 2020.
Testimony from staff includes a hairstylist who had to wait 120 days to be paid, only to then have a $20 transfer fee deducted by West’s company.
One performer at his show alleged that despite long working hours, he was not permitted a meal or restroom breaks, and had to either stand all day or sit on the floor because not enough chairs were provided for staff.
The lawsuits pertain to West’s Sunday Service shows as well as his Nebuchadnezzar ‘opera’ at the Hollywood Bowl in November 2019.
As per California employment law, performers and crew should have been classified as employees, not contractors, and should have been paid overtime, given meals and received adequate breaks.
One lawsuit, filed by lawyer Frank Kim, represents 500 performers. The other has been filed by Harris & Ruble on behalf of 300 production crew members.
As reported by The Sun, these totals are expected to grow as attorneys work to track down other employees who can share their experiences.
‘They’ve got hundreds of people on board already, but they’re talking to many, many others, who want to be a part of it. People are very upset how they were treated, saying it’s their worst experience,’ one unnamed source told the publication.
‘No one knows how involved Kanye himself was, if he knew what was going on, as it was all so last minute, it was terribly ran. Whether it was mismanagement, accidental, or on purpose, this is a very strong case,’ they added.
Another anonymous legal source said it is likely West was oblivious to how staff were being treated, but it is no excuse.
‘When you do things last minute, it’s disorganised, mistakes will happen. When Kanye West does a production, he just says to his guys, ‘Make it happen’ – he has different teams of people to do things, and when you’re under that amount of pressure, you cut corners,’ they said.
‘I’m pretty sure Kanye West hasn’t done anything about paying a bill in twenty years, he’d expect people to take care of it,’ they added.
The source warned that the rapper should settle and not let the case go to trial, as jury members may just see a ‘rich rapper ripping off normal folk’.
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