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Celine Dion

California’s Labor Commission Rules In Favor Of Rob Prinz & ICM Partners In Celine Dion Commission Dispute

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LOS ANGELES (CelebrityAccess) — The California Labor Commission has ruled in favor of ICM Partners, and Rob Prinz, the agency’s Global head of Music over unpaid commissions from the legendary Canadian recording artist Celine Dion.

In a November 13th ruling, California Labor Commissioner David Gurley ordered Dion and her production company CDA to pay Prinz and ICM Partners 1.5% of all gross compensation she earned from her Las Vegas residencies and Quebec performances, and a 3% commission on all of her global touring business under her omnibus agreement with AEG, from May 2018 to the end of 2026.

“We are very pleased that the Labor Commissioner listened to the testimony of numerous witnesses over several days and reviewed a significant number of documents before issuing a very thoughtful 32 page opinion which unequivocally confirmed ICM’s and Rob Prinz’s right to commission an extremely lucrative deal which they were instrumental in negotiating and procuring,” said Patricia Glaser, Litigation Counsel for ICM Partners.

Rob Prinz
Rob Prinz (Courtesy ICM Partners)

The dispute centers on the Omnibus Agreement Dion reached with AEG in early 2017 which covered the extension of her Las Vegas residency at Caesars Palace, as well as her global touring business, valued at almost half a billion dollars.

Prinz, who served as Dion’s agent from 1989 to 2018 played a “key” role in negotiating the Omnibus Agreement in late 2016 and early 2017.

However, following a change in management, Dion reportedly decided that she would no longer pay Prinz for concert commissions on the Omnibus Agreement, and in 2018 ended her professional relationship with Prinz when it became clear he wouldn’t accept the changes to their agreement.

“I don’t know the exact amount of money to be – the exact amount of money, but what I know is that we didn’t need Rob’s help anymore, and we thought that – I thought that if I don’t need Rob’s help, it would make no sense for me to pay Rob if I don’t need his help,” she testified.

In its ruling, the Labor Commission cited precedent from previous cases that included Paradigm Talent Agency v. Charles Carroll and ICM Partners v. James Bates which determined that talent agents are “generally entitled to receive post termination commissions for all employment secured by the agency prior to its termination.”

The Commission also considered The Endeavor Agency, LLC v. Alyssa Milano which stipulated that “[c]ommissions are owed post termination for monies negotiated by the agent during the term of the agreement and the artist cannot unilaterally determine there is no further obligation to pay for work already performed.”

“This ruling leaves no doubt that Rob Prinz and ICM not only had a legally enforceable agreement to commission Ms. Dion’s AEG deal, but that, throughout her brilliant career, Rob represented her in an exemplary manner, culminating in an unprecedented touring and residency contract. As the Labor Commissioner found, agents have every right to be paid for the work they do for their clients, especially where, as here, Rob’s more than two decades of hard work resulted in raising her compensation to dizzying new levels,” said Rick Levy, General Counsel for ICM Partners.

Legal reps for Dion did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the ruling.

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