For Richer, For Poor

Former Genesis guitarist Steve Hackett’s split from wife Kim Poor may clarify how English courts determine how creative assets are split.

Hackett, divorced last year after 32 years of marriage, faces a multimillion-pound legal action from his former wife over rights to some of the band’s most famous songs.

Poor has issued High Court proceedings saying she is entitled to revenue from his share of classic Genesis songs dating back to the ’70s – a claim that could be worth millions of pounds.

The dispute centres on a company Hackett had between 1977 and 2006 that owned the copyright to his recordings and compositions.

According to Poor’s High Court writ, Hackett signed over all the rights in his work to a company called Stephen Hackett Ltd.

All future rights to the copyright and all royalties due to him from Genesis songs were paid into the company. His ex-wife co-owns the company.

The writ alleges that in March 2006 Hackett confirmed that the company would employ him for the next decade and would receive the benefits of his activities.

Poor says Hackett has since revoked his instructions and asked for the royalties to be paid directly to him in breach of their agreement. Hackett’s lawyers say he has the right to receive the cash directly.

His ex-wife says she’s trying to protect the company she and her ex-husband still jointly own.