Pop artist Rihanna is reportedly ready to settle a lawsuit she brought against her former accountants, but a federal judge recently announced that she must appear before a court mediator in person to do so. The popular singer sued accounting business Berdon LLP for allegedly mismanaging her money. The firm staunchly denies all such claims, arguing that Rihanna is responsible for the losses detailed in the lawsuit. However, the representatives with Berdon informed the judge that they are also ready to enter mediation.
Rihanna blames Berdon for an extensive IRS audit of two years’ worth of tax returns, claiming that she was forced to spend millions of dollars to correct errors on her returns. She accuses the accounting firm of negligently failing to identify and address those mistakes before submitting her filings.
While most Texas taxpayers are not dealing with the seven and eight-digit figures found on Rihanna’s tax returns, this case illustrates how dramatic the effects of an audit from the Internal Revenue Service can be. Texas residents who submit inaccurate filings or fail to file returns altogether face harsh penalties such as wage garnishments, liens and levies. It is thus crucial for such individuals to seek quality legal assistance to ensure their interests are properly defended.
Rihanna has reportedly avoided attending any legal proceedings thus far; she canceled a court date in June claiming she was sick, but was proven to be awake all night watching the NBA Championship. Similarly, Berdon claims the chart-topping singer repeatedly had them fly hundreds of miles to take a deposition only to back out at the last minute.
Rihanna requested that she be allowed to send a representative to settlement discussions, but the judge rejected that proposal, informing her legal team that she is required to attend every scheduled court appearance in the event the lawsuit goes to trial. Likewise, he asserted that deciding to settle after pushing the case to trial is unacceptable. The judge explained that he would not modify the case’s timetable “because of an 11-hour epiphany on mediation.”
New York Post, “Rihanna will have to show in court for lawsuit” Rich Calder, Oct. 21, 2013