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Actress settles suit with television network

On Behalf of | Jan 5, 2017 | Contract Disputes

When people or businesses have to sign a contract, it is important to have an attorney who will protect their interests. Missouri residents may be interested to know that an actress has settled a lawsuit against the cable television network BET. Gabrielle Union had been pursuing compensation of at least $3 million.

In October of 2016, the actress accused BET and the producers of “Being Mary Jane”, the television show of which she was the star, of intentionally changing the terms of their contract in order to save money. Allegedly, the producers set aside a provision that permitted a substantial break between the fourth and fifth seasons, both of which were to be 10 episodes each.

Union is contracted to be paid a minimum of $150,000 for each episode of the fourth season and $165,000 for every episode of the fifth season. Her attorneys states that the contract that she signed was drafted with her movie career in consideration. The representatives of the network allegedly agreed that actress would not be compelled to appear in more than 13 episodes, a condition on which she signed the contract.

Still, in following corporate policy, the signed agreement was amended with a provision that allowed 10 to 26 episodes per season for the actress. The actress was advised of this amendment only one week before principal photography began for the fourth season, which the network wanted to run for 20 episodes.

Contract law provides various types of remedies when an agreement is materially breached. Attorneys who have experience with these types of matters will sometimes seek a negotiated settlement rather than having a judge decide the matter after a lengthy and public trial, which appears to have been the case here.