Seattle-based music startup Lively, which abruptly closed its doors earlier this month, has been sued by its own law firm for allegedly failing to pay more than $120,000 in legal bills, according to court records.
The suit was filed in King County Superior Court by McNaul Ebel Nawrot & Helgren on June 10, two days before Lively said publicly that it had shuttered its operations and laid off most of its 22 employees.
However, a small crew of executives remains at the company, and Lively CEO Dean Graziano told GeekWire in an email over the weekend that they “are exploring all options including to continue operations” with the potential to “keep the company and our IP alive.”
Lively, which had raised more than $2 million in venture funding from Second Avenue Partners and others, was developing a service for making audio and video content available to music fans shortly after concerts ended. The app was featured as a GeekWire App of the Week in May.
Graziano told GeekWire at the time of the closure three weeks ago that the company could still continue if a new investor came on board, but in the meantime Lively had “run out of runway.”
“The music business, and it is no secret, no one is making any money,” he said at the time. “It is tough to make money when you don’t own the content.”
The suit by McNaul Ebel says the firm was retained by Lively in June 2012, and provided legal services in organizational, corporate and startup matters, in addition to resolving an unspecified “informal dispute.” The suit says the company hasn’t disputed the invoices, but has failed to pay $120,925.34.
Update: William Carleton, a McNaul Ebel lawyer, said the firm got along well with Graziano and the Lively team, and enjoyed working with them. He explained that the suit is nothing personal, just a matter of McNaul Ebel wanting the company to pay for the work that the firm did.