Enrique Iglesias Sues Universal Over Music Streaming Rights

Enrique Iglesias left Universal Music Group back in 2015 after more than a decade with the company. Now he's back to slap the company with a lawsuit.

The lawsuit, according to the New York Daily Post, has Iglesias claiming the company was "systematically underpaying" him for music royalties related to songs being played on music streaming services like Spotify, Pandora and SoundCloud.

According to Igelsias, the company only paid him a "small fraction" of the 50 percent of royalties he was owed for money made off streaming music.

The "Bailando" singer cites Iglesias' 1999 contract, which stated he would be paid a 50 percent royalty fee for digital and physical music sales along with "any type of use" not specifically mentioned. Streaming services did not exist at the time, but Igelsias and his attorney are arguing that they fall into that category.

"Despite this record-breaking success, Universal has wrongly insisted that artists like Enrique be paid for streams in the same manner as they are paid for physical records despite the fact that none of the attendant costs (production, distribution, inventory, losses) actually exist in the digital world," the lawsuit reads.

Iglesias resigned with Universal in 2010 to produce a pair of albums, but his new contract did not mention streaming anywhere in royalty rights. According to the lawsuit, that was "not an oversight."

Iglesias has had an eventful past few months, welcoming twins with his girlfriend Anna Kournikova back in December.


In 2015, Iglesias left Universal and signed with Sony Music. He's made 10 studio albums since 1995, most recently Sex and Love back in 2014. The Spanish singer has won more than 200 awards throughout his music career, including a Grammy, five Latin Grammys, 23 Billboard Music Awards and six MTV awards.