It’s been over 10 years since the sad and unfortunate death of original Alice In Chains frontman Layne Staley in 2002. And while the singer’s long, slow withdrawal from the spotlight and drug-related death wasn’t pretty, things are about to get ugly again. It took the better part of a decade for the band to regroup with a new singer, William DuVall, and release Black Gives Way to Blue in 2009. But now, according to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Staley’s mother, Nancy McCallum, is suing the band, contending that the surviving members owe her half of the money due Staley, which is about 16% of the band’s income. In the lawsuit, it states that she was told by the band’s attorney that Staley’s interest in the band’s works was being liquidated and that the revenue sharing agreement was being terminated after a decade.
The band’s attorneys claim that McCallum attempted to trademark the Alice In Chains name. They also state that she’ll be able to collect royalties on songs her son wrote or co-wrote, and they’ve paid her far more than she’s due. In a letter filed with the court, band attorney Peter Paterno states that they hired an accountant to determine the value of Staley’s share in the band and arrived at $341,000, which is less than the $705,000 that has already been paid out to Staley’s heirs. It also says that if McCallum doesn’t drop her attempt to trademark the band’s name, they may counter-sue.