Women in Music 2016

Jenni Rivera's (Televised) Life Story Prompts Lawsuit Between Family and Former Manager

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Jenni Rivera performs at 2010 Lilith Fair at Cricket Wireless Amphitheatre on July 7, 2010 in San Diego.

Not everybody has the right to tell the story of the late Jenni Rivera -- at least, that's the core of a lawsuit filed by Jenni Rivera Enterprises, the corporation overseeing the estate of the late singer, against Rivera's former manager Pete Salgado. At the heart of the lawsuit is an announced Univision TV series based on Rivera’s life, as told through Salgado’s perspective. 

Su verdadero nombre era Dolores (Her Real Name Was Dolores), was announced by Univision at their upfront presentations this past spring. Univision billed the series as “the untold story of the iconic Jenni Rivera,” whose real name was Dolores Janney Rivera and who famously died in a plane crash in 2012 at 43 years old.

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The suit also names entertainment company Latin World Entertainment, its CEO Luis Balaguer, Dhana Media and BTF Media, who, according to the suit, are working with Salgado on production of the series. Salgado worked with Rivera for nearly a decade, and helped negotiate many of her deals. 

However the suit, filed Sept. 12 in California Superior Court in Los Angeles, says that Jenni Rivera Enterprises and her children “have the sole right whether and/ or how such information about their mother may be revealed.”

Specifically, they charge that on Sep. 17, 2013, Salgado entered a non disclosure agreement “in which he agreed to: Not disclose any information to anyone about Ms. Rivera, her family or the company managing her assets.”  The suit also says Salgado has stated that agreement was “forged.” 

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At press time, Salgado did not respond to requests for comment. The Rivera family is working with Telemundo to develop another TV series on Rivera’s life.