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Ehrlich v. Diggs

United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York
169 F.Supp.2d 124 (2001)


Facts

In August 1993, David Ehrlich (plaintiff) orally agreed to serve as the manager of the rap group Gravediggaz. As alleged by him, the agreement provided that he would receive 15 percent of the gross entertainment-related earnings of the group and of each of its individual members arising from any work or contracts that commenced or otherwise arose while Ehrlich was their manager, regardless of whether the earnings were received by members performing individually or with the group. The agreement could be terminated at will by Ehrlich or the group. A month earlier, Ehrlich had allegedly helped the Gravediggaz obtain a recording contract with Gee Street Records. The Gee Street contract gave the recording company an option to sign Robert Diggs (defendant), a member of Gravediggaz, as a solo artist. In December 1996, Diggs entered into a solo recording contract with Gee Street. Ehrlich later sued Diggs for commissions arising from Diggs’ association with Gravediggaz, his solo career, his work as a producer, and his membership in a later rap group. Diggs moved to dismiss Ehrlich’s complaint, or in the alternative, for summary judgment, on the grounds that the oral management agreement was barred by the statute of frauds. Ehrlich was a resident of California with a license to practice law in New York; Diggs was a resident of New York. The trial court considered Diggs’ motion.

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Holding and Reasoning (Dearie, J.)

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