Tom Petty's Daughters Sue His Widow

Tom Petty’s daughters are suing his widow, and others, for control of the late rock star’s music catalogue.

Adria and Annakim Violette – Petty's daughters from his marriage to Jane Benyo – have filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court on behalf of Petty Unlimited LLC, a company set up following his death in October 2017. Neither woman is named as a plaintiff.

Petty's daughters allege their famous father’s wife Dana York Petty has deprived them of the right to determine how his music is released.

The suit claims Petty Unlimited was created to own and exploit "all tangible and intangible properties held directly or indirectly by Tom Petty at the time of his death and attributable to any of his efforts with respect to his music" and that Dana has failed to fund the LLC for “her own personal gain and advantage.” 

The daughters are seeking at least $5 million U.S. in damages, alleging breach of fiduciary duty, unfair competition, unjust enrichment and more.

Dana’s lawyer Adam Streisand reacted to the lawsuit in a statement to media.

"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,” it read. “Dana will not allow destructive nonsense like this to distract her from protecting her husband’s legacy.”

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Dana was named "directing trustee" of Petty Unlimited LLC, but Adria and Annakim were each given one-third of the assets.

The lawsuit filed by Petty’s daughters accuses Dana of “self-dealing, theft, and gross mismanagement of company assets.”

None of the allegations have been proven in a court.

Last month, Dana petitioned a court to give responsibility for Petty’s catalogue to a professional manager because Adria is allegedly “erratic and abusive” and interfered with plans to release a 25th anniversary edition of Petty’s Wildflowers album.

Adria countered with a petition to take control of her dad’s estate.