Ed Sheeran Paid $20 Million to End Copyright Suit With <i>X-Factor</i> Winners

April 11, 2017, 12:09 PM UTC

English singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran settled a $20 million copyright infringement lawsuit over his 2014 hit “Photograph.”

The case was dismissed Friday with prejudice — meaning the plaintiffs would be unable from filing a lawsuit with the same claim again, according to the Hollywood Reporter. The report did not detail the terms of the settlement.

Songwriters Thomas Leonard and Martin Harrington accused Sheeran of “verbatim, note-for-note copying” their 2009 song “Amazing,” written for Matt Cardle, the 2012 winner of The X Factor.

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“The songs’ similarities reach the very essence of the work,” the complaint, filed in June 2016, said. “The similarities go beyond substantial, which is itself sufficient to establish copyright infringement, and are in fact striking. The similarity of words, vocal style, vocal melody, melody and rhythm are clear indicators, among other things, that ‘Photograph’ copies ‘Amazing.’”

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Sheeran is also being sued for allegedly copying elements of Marvin Gaye’s 1973 hit “Let’s Get It On” in Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud.”