Tom Petty's Daughters Sue His Widow for $5 Million Over Claims She Mismanaged His Estate
Tom Petty's daughters have filed suit against his widow, claiming she has mismanaged the late singer's affairs against his wishes
Tom Petty’s daughters have filed a lawsuit against his widow Dana, claiming she has managed the late singer’s affairs against his wishes, and cost his company millions of dollars.
Adria Petty and Annakim Violette allege that Dana has been uncooperative in running Petty Unlimited, a company created after Tom’s 2017 death that is supposed to be managed equally by all three women, according to documents filed Wednesday in Los Angeles Superior Court and first obtained by The Blast.
The suit, which lists Petty Unlimited as the Plaintiff, claims Dana has been withholding certain assets and diverting them to a competing company, Tom Petty Legacy LLC, which the suit says she set up “as a vehicle through which to deprive” Petty Unlimited of the assets, according to documents obtained by PEOPLE.
Adria and Annakim are seeking more than $5 million in damages that they claim they lost directly through Dana “usurping” their business opportunities “for her own personal gain or advantage… for the purpose of depriving Plaintiff of those opportunities and the benefits thereof.”
“Tom Petty wanted his music and his legacy to be controlled equally by his daughters, Adria and Annakim, and his wife, Dana,” said Petty Unlimited attorney Alex Weingarten in a statement to PEOPLE. “Dana has refused Tom’s express wishes and insisted instead upon misappropriating Tom’s life’s work for her own selfish interests. After countless efforts to resolve this matter amicably and out of court, we could no longer stand idly by and watch Dana disrespect Tom’s wishes, his music, and his legacy.”
Dana’s attorney Adam Streisand, meanwhile, slammed the lawsuit in a statement obtained by PEOPLE.
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“This misguided and meritless lawsuit sadly demonstrates exactly why Tom Petty designated his wife to be the sole trustee with authority to manage his estate,” the statement read. “Dana will not allow destructive nonsense like this to distract her from protecting her husband’s legacy.”
Petty’s surviving family has been locked in a legal battle since he died in October 2017 at age 66 of an accidental drug overdose.
Dana filed legal documents in April claiming Adria and Annakim were preventing her from properly managing his music by trying to force her out of overseeing his estate.
Though Petty’s will stipulated that all three women “participate equally” in managing his assets, Dana requested the court require a consensus between all three for “significant decisions,” as Adria and Annakim’s votes would overpower her opinion.
She also asked the court to execute an operating agreement to appoint a manager to oversee day-to-day matters alongside herself and Petty’s daughters, according to documents previously obtained by PEOPLE.
The figure would effectively act as a mediator, as Dana claims that relations between the parties have broken down despite her going “above and beyond to seek to work cooperatively with Tom’s daughters.”
The documents accuse Adria, 44, of abusive and “erratic” behavior that’s made her difficult to work with, and also of harboring resentment toward Dana, who married Tom in 2001.
She goes on to cite specific instances, claiming that both daughters dragged their feet over a potential greatest hits compilation, and rejected a million-dollar offer to release an expanded 25th-anniversary edition of the album Wildflowers without consulting her.
In response, Adria filed a legal motion of her own, also obtained by PEOPLE, requesting the court transfer Petty’s music to a separate trust – as stipulated in his will – that would give her and Annakim equal say over the management.