Billy Joel has reached a settlement to end a copyright lawsuit – not over a song, but over a home renovation blueprint.
In a filing Thursday, a Long Island contractor agreed to end a lawsuit claiming that Joel and others ripped off copyrighted architectural designs for a renovations project at his Oyster Bay mansion. The contractor claimed they were abruptly fired and the plans were illegally handed over to a new builder.
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The notice, filed in Brooklyn federal court, did not included any specific terms of the settlement agreement. Attorneys for both sides did not immediately return requests for more details.
Joel was sued in 2020 by Berry Hill Development Corp. after the company was fired from a project to renovate his 12,000 square-foot compound in Oyster Bay, which features three homes and 29 acres of beach front property. Berry Hill was terminated after it was told that engineering defects were discovered in its work, but it called the firing “wrongful and not truly for cause.”
According to the lawsuit, Berry Hill was never compensated for the $126,700 the company it had already spent on drawing up architectural plans for the site, and that those plans were then handed off to a new architect. The replacement, Neal Stufano and his firm, N.J. Caine Architecture PLLC, then submitted “nearly identical” plans for the house to local building regulators.
In addition to Joel and Stufano, the lawsuit also named Billy’s wife Alexis, as well as their business manager Todd Kamelhar and their F. Scott LLC, a corporate entity through which they own the Oyster Bay home.
When the case was first filed, a spokesman for Joel told the New York Post: “Billy and Alexis Joel will not stand by in the midst of such unjustifiable accusations that obscure the real issue which is the rightful termination of general contractor Berry Hill.
“Berry Hill was terminated from the project because of significant structural defects that affect the safety of the residence and Berry Hill’s attempt to now collect payment for deficient work is outrageous,” the spokesman added.