Neal Schon Sues Jonathan Cain in Battle Over Journey Credit Card
Neal Schon is suing Jonathan Cain, claiming he “improperly restricted” access to financial documents relating to Journey’s American Express card.
“This action is brought to turn the lights on, so to speak, and obtain critical financial information Schon has been trying to obtain but has been denied,” Schon’s lawyers argue in court documents filed in Northern California’s Contra Costa County.
Cain and Schon established a limited-liability corporation called Nomota in 1998 to handle Journey’s business dealings, with shared 50/50 ownership. According to court documents, Cain later set up Nomota’s American Express account “without Schon’s consent or knowledge, with only Cain as the account holder.”
The filing says “Schon has tried to avoid legal action, repeatedly requesting that Cain grant him access to the AMEX account. For many months, Cain and his representatives have represented that Schon would be granted access. But every time Schon contacted AMEX, AMEX informed him that he was still not authorized to access AMEX account records.”
His lawyers further assert that Schon “must have unfettered access to Nomota’s records so that he can oversee and manage Nomota/Journey. ... The AMEX account is a Journey account, not a personal account of Cain,” the filing continues, arguing that “millions in Journey funds have flowed through this AMEX account.”
Schon claims he can’t “determine the portion of Journey’s profits to which he is entitled as the founder and president of Journey” without access.
His lawyers also make a host of other allegations about Cain that they say are detrimental to Journey’s continuing business. “Cain is interfering with Journey, refusing to respond to booking opportunities, blocking payment to band members, crew and vendors, refusing to execute necessary operating documents, and in other ways as well,” the filing claims. “Cain has obstructed Schon from viewing expenses incurred by Cain and his touring party on band tours.
“Cain has further refused to deal with critical, time-sensitive touring contracts for Journey’s 2023 tour and ensure payment for band members and crew, who Cain contends are ‘non-essential,’” the court action further alleges. “Schon believes those band and crew who are crucial to the band’s success should be paid. Cain’s conduct is inexplicable.”
A preliminary hearing is scheduled for March 3.
This is just the latest addition in a long list of lawsuits between Journey members. Steve Perry took legal action earlier this year after Cain and Schon submitted trademark registrations for 20 Journey songs. Ross Valory and Steve Smith were fired in 2020 after Cain and Schon accused them of an "ill-conceived corporate coup d'état.” Both sides then sued each other, with the dispute eventually settled out of court.
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