Singer and record label settle to avoid court

Maryland music fans may be familiar with the work of British songwriter, singer and actress Rita Ora. The 25-year-old’s debut album “Ora” was a huge hit in 2012, but she has not put out any records since. This may be in large part due to a contentious legal battle with her record label that she became embroiled with in 2015, but media sources reported on June 7 that Ora and Roc nation had reached an out-of-court settlement.

Ora agreed to release five albums when she signed with the Jay Z-backed Roc Nation in 2008, but she became disillusioned with the label and filed legal papers in 2015 claiming that her contract violated California law and should be ruled unenforceable. The singer said at the time that Roc Nation was more interested in promoting Jay Z’s other commercial ventures than fostering musical talent. She has since said that the label devotes an inappropriate amount of time and resources to the music streaming service Tidal.

The contract dispute appeared to be heading toward a courtroom showdown when Roc Nation responded by filing a lawsuit of its own. The label argued that it had held up their end of the deal by spending $2 million promoting Ora and her music but had received little in return. The details of the reported settlement were not disclosed.

Attorneys will often urge their clients to make every effort to reach a settlement when they become involved in contract disputes that are likely to attract a significant amount of media attention. Litigation is a public and sometimes quite salacious process, and even victorious parties could emerge with damaged reputations. However, when a settlement remains out of reach, the matter may have to be determined in a courtroom.

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