WWE is not without controversy. They have been in trouble with the law several times over and lawsuits are continuous with them. Sometimes they settle out of court, sometimes they even lose cases. However, WWE does win from time to time. This is especially true when it comes to their talent. WWE contracts are filled with so much material that WWE is protected in several ways from many lawsuits with talent.
WWE also tries to never take anyone to court, as they have to have good reason to do so. It is only when they have to that they chose to enter a court room. Vince McMahon is quoted in saying that he hates lawyers. Who can blame him right? WWE has been sued dozens of times since the 1990’s alone. It seems that now however, WWE might have to go back to court. This time to settle an issue with Phil Brooks, better known to the world as former WWE Champion CM Punk.
The former WWE Superstar is known for being controversial, but it seems that his greed in a sense lately has been a bit much. Recently, CM Punk’s lawyer sent a 22 page letter to WWE’s Corporate Office, demanding royalties be given to Punk regarding the use of his likeness. They specifically mentioned the WWE 2K15 video game that Punk has a prominent role in.
The issue that CM Punk faces is that he has breached his contract with WWE. Now, WWE didn’t take Punk to court over this and there was no rumor of them doing so as they realized that Punk was just simply done and was never coming back. WWE has a right to extend any WWE contract they feel necessary if a talent misses a significant period of time. They do this for those that get hurt for a long time, as there are some who get injured frequently. Since WWE guarantees a lot of money, they want to be sure they can make it back somehow. Understandable.
Punk has not had his deal extended, at least as of yet. However, WWE might have a period of time in which they could do so.
Now that Punk is potentially suing WWE for royalty rights, WWE has a lot of ability to counter by suing him for breach of contract. The two sides could come to an agreement that Punk and WWE will not pursue charges if the other backs down. This being written out by both lawyers would prevent anything from going to court. The last thing the WWE wants is another lawsuit on them, especially from a former talent.
Plus AJ Lee, Punk’s wife, is still a contracted WWE Diva. This puts an enormous amount of pressure on her as WWE clearly could bury her or make her look bad for as long as they wish, or they could use her well. Who knows? The locker room won’t be fans of Punk, and potentially her by proxy.
This also hurts Punk, as many fans are against the idea of him seeking more money after he left the company high and dry. Fans chant his name weekly, hoping for a comeback. In reality, it may never happen by fans will still chant. Some still think this entire thing is one big storyline. It’s not people, stop holding out hope. If it was a big storyline, then it would be the most elaborate in the history of WWE.
WWE and Punk may go at in court even still, as CM Punk owning the rights to his name means he does have a case in getting royalties. The issue is that the game has not come out yet to get any money for it. If he is claiming he should have gotten some while under contract, he most likely did. He did imaging and everything else for the game dating back to last year.
WWE did stop paying Punk after a while, because they felt he breached his deal. Instead of going to court, it seemed that they just refused to pay him anymore. Most would think this was fair, as he certainly did breach his deal by walking out and not coming back. Even after repeated attempts by many WWE officials, including WWE Chairman Vince McMahon himself. So WWE gave him multiple opportunities to come back and work through the rest of his deal, but he refused. Meaning they were perfectly within their right to stop paying him, citing breach. That means the guaranteed money is null and void.
This could be where the problem really started, but that is speculation. The one thing that is not speculation is that WWE and Punk will certainly be talking, especially after the letter that was sent to them. We are sure to know more about this in the coming months. Do not be surprised if a lawsuit is filled against Punk, if only to counter his own claim.
[IMG Credits: WWE.com, DeviantArt-jeri_spy-d5j7wnd]