Luke Combs attempts to clear up $250,000 lawsuit against fan who sold homemade tumbler cups

Luke Combs said on social media Wednesday morning that he was “sick to my stomach” after waking up to learn he had won a $250,000 judgment against a Florida woman who made $380 by selling 18 handmade drinking glasses. Had earned dollars, which had their likeness on them. , The country superstar said he was “completely and completely unaware” of the lawsuit in his name or the judgment handed down in an Illinois court until his attention was drawn to a television news interview with a crying woman.

Combs said he personally called Nicole Harness, the defendant in the lawsuit, and promised to send her $11,000 to meet her immediate needs – she said $5,500 was locked into her Amazon store account. Now all his profits are earmarked for this. Move on to the $250,000 a judge said he owed Combs.

Country singer Luke Combs is helping a disabled Florida woman who sells tumblers online after he was ordered to pay $250,000.

TAMPA, FLORIDA – Country singer Luke Combs is helping a disabled Florida woman who sells tumblers online after he was ordered to pay her $250,000 after she was caught in an action that his attorneys have filed. He had launched a crackdown against companies that sell unauthorized merchandise bearing his image. Name on it.

Combs said in an Instagram video posted Wednesday that he had asked his lawyers to remove Nicole Harness from the lawsuit filed in Illinois federal court and that he was sending her $11,000. She sold 18 tumblers bearing her name and likeness on Amazon, each of which was sold for $20, earning $360.

The singer, who recently topped the country charts with a remake of Tracy Chapman’s “Fast Car,” also said he would start selling his own Tumblr with the proceeds going to pay for Harness’ medical bills. – He has heart disease and was recently admitted to the hospital. He also said he would take Harness and her family to an upcoming concert so he could meet her.

He said that his lawyers should only go after big companies that sell unauthorized merchandise, not fans who have small businesses. Most of the 45 other vendors being sued appear to have large operations in Asia, court filings show. Under US copyright law, those selling unauthorized goods can be subject to severe fines and have their assets confiscated. They may also face criminal charges.

Additionally, the singer said he now plans to sell his own Tumblr through his merch store, and will direct all of the proceeds from it to help with Harness’ medical bills.

“We have a company that goes after people — only, allegedly, large corporations operating internationally that make millions and millions of dollars — for counterfeit T-shirts, things of that nature,” Combs said in his video message. They make things, run illegal businesses.” Instagram. “And apparently this woman, Nicole, is somehow stuck in it, and it makes me absolutely sick to my stomach.”

In a news report from Tampa’s WFLA that caught Combs’ attention, a tearful Harness said he didn’t even know he was being sued because the notice had gone to a spam folder on an AOL account he rarely used. Does it. He only learned of the legal action against him when he received notice of a $250,000 fine, a few days after returning home from the hospital due to congestive heart failure.

“It is very stressful. I don’t have money to pay my bills,’” said Harness, who got the idea to create Combs’ Tumblr after attending his show in Tampa earlier this year, in her interview with WFLA. “I just want a solution to this. I had no intention of causing any harm to Luke Combs. I stopped selling glass. I pulled it down. I just don’t get it.” He said selling goods through the Amazon storefront is his primary source of income, and after the decision the company cut off his access to that money.

According to WFLA, even though lawsuits in Florida require defendants to file paperwork in person, the law in Illinois is different, allowing attorneys to serve a person via email — apparently without any Confirmation that the email was actually received. The $250,000 judgment has already been entered, so it’s unclear how it could be overturned, if that’s Combs’ wish.

The verdict was reportedly handed down against several counterfeit sellers, of which Harness was just one, with each being fined $250,000.

His Instagram video, called “Sue Reaction,” began: “What’s up guys? Luke here. It’s 7:27 in the morning here in Tennessee. I woke up at 5 a.m. to go to the bathroom and the first thing I did was There it was” – a WFLA news report was playing in the background as he spoke – “a woman who’s being sued by me for $250,000. I spent the last two hours trying to make it right. Spent a few days trying to figure out what was going on, because I was completely unaware of it. … First, my manager contacted this news station that ran this article to get some information. ..”

Combs said he “was able to get Nicole’s phone number. I spoke to her this morning. She told me that, you know, she was absolutely shocked by it. I’m very apologetic. Speaking to her… Honestly, it bothers me that this would happen, especially over the holidays. I can’t imagine being in her shoes. She told me she has $5,500 deposited into her Amazon account. I’m going to double it, she Will send $11,000 today so he has nothing to worry about. He should never have been involved in anything like this. No fan should have been involved in anything like this.

“And apparently making the glass got him in trouble, so I’m going to make my own glass that will go up today. I’ll keep telling you about it, but all that money will be given to Nicole and her family to help with her medical bills. Hope this might help him.

“Again, this is incredible. I was completely shocked when I saw this this morning. it makes me sick. It’s not something I would ever do. I am not that kind of person. I am not greedy in any way, shape or form. Money is the last thing on my mind – I promise you that. And I invited Nicole and her family to a show this year so I could hug her and say sorry in person.

Combs concluded his statement by saying that he “wanted to make this clear, man, because it bothers me that anyone would think I’m this kind of person, because I’m the furthest from it. So, you guys. Love it and will keep you posted.

“It’s not something I would ever do. I am not that kind of person. I am not greedy in any way, shape or form. Money is the last thing on my mind. I promise you this,” said Combs, a two-time Country Music Association Entertainer of the Year and three-time Grammy nominee.

Harness’s plight came to light Tuesday in a story by Tampa TV station WFLA that went viral.

Harness told the station that Combs’ lawyers filed the suit by email rather than serving it in person, which was allowed by the federal court for the Northern District of Illinois. She said the October lawsuit went into her junk mail folder and she never saw it.

When Harness did not respond within 30 days as expected, the judge found him in default and fined him $250,000. She then found out she was being sued when Amazon, following a judge’s order, froze the $5,500 in her account for potential seizure, meaning she couldn’t pay her bills. Was.

She is a big fan of the singer and started selling Combs tumblers after attending one of his concerts.

“It’s very stressful,” a tearful Harness told the station. “I had no intention of causing any harm to Luke Combs. I stopped selling glass. I pulled it down. I just don’t understand. …It’s not something I wanted to do wrong like this. “I just want to get back to my everyday life.”

Combs, in his Instagram video, said he learned of Harness and the lawsuit when he awoke at 5 a.m. Wednesday to go to the bathroom and saw the story. He said he had his manager get Harness’ contact information so he could call her and tell her he would make things right.

“I was so apologetic in talking with her. It just makes me sick, honestly, that this would happen, especially at the holidays. I can’t imagine being in her shoes,” Combs said.

A relieved Harness told the TV station Wednesday she was surprised when Combs called.

“He was a very nice guy, very understanding,” Harness said. “I explained to him what happened, he understood. I still can’t believe he called me and he is doing these things for me.”

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