A Literal Chorus of Claimants Are Suing Kanye West for Mistreatment and Unpaid Wages; Class-Action Suit Now Totaling $30M

Kanye West performs Sunday Service during the 2019 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival on April 21, 2019.
Kanye West performs Sunday Service during the 2019 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival on April 21, 2019.
Photo: Rich Fury/Getty Images for Coachella (Getty Images)

La, la, la, laaaaa, looks like we’re going to be waiting a bit longer for Kanye West to get his money right because reportedly, the way he’s been dispensing money (or not) is all the way wrong.

We reported in November that a group of hairstylists and makeup artists filed a class-action lawsuit against the rapper and former presidential candidate (I know...I know…) for unpaid wages connected to the Nebuchadnezzar live opera performance as part of his Sunday Service program.

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Now, according to a report by Page Six, we know that yet another class-action lawsuit was filed last summer in Los Angeles against West, alleging that the Sunday Service performers were mistreated and either paid late or unpaid. Plus, the number of people listed in the lawsuit has increased.

One lawsuit was filed by Los Angeles employment lawyer Frank Kim, representing over 500 performers, while the other was filed by entertainment attorneys Harris & Ruble, representing the behind-the-scenes staff of approximately 300 people. The attorneys are reportedly trying to identify more alleged victims and the total number involved in the class-action suit is expected to be near 1,000 claimants.

California labor laws are strict and based on this information, the performers and crew members should’ve been classified as employees instead of independent contractors and thus had a legal right to overtime wages as well as mean and rest breaks.

Page Six has reached out to West’s representatives.

The Sun, which has obtained court records, further reports:

“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,” a legal source told The Sun.

“People in the lawsuit are asking their friends who’ve worked on previous Sunday Services, and they’re jumping at the chance, they want to get involved and talk about their horrible time.

“Now it’s about proving that Kanye is the employer and the buck stops with him. Now that there’s others coming forward, then the complaint will be amended and be bigger in scope.

“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 [run].

“Whether it was mismanagement, accidental, or on purpose, this is a very strong case.”

Another insider revealed that West was probably oblivious to the staff issues, that’s no excuse as to how they were treated.

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West is facing about $30 million in damages and claims in regards to this case. Meanwhile, per the Daily Mail, West is also dealing with another lawsuit filed in August 2020 from MyChannel Inc., which alleges its employees were unpaid for six months of technology-based work for Sunday Service.

Staff Writer, Entertainment at The Root. Sugar, spice & everything rice. Equipped with the uncanny ability to make a Disney reference and a double entendre in the same sentence.

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DISCUSSION

 I won’t ever be a millionaire, but I know one thing. If I ever try to do shit like this, I would make sure all my I’s are dotted and T’s crossed. I just don’t get why people with a bunch of money ALWAYS try to give people working for them get the short end of the stick.