Mariah Carey is being sued for 20 million dollars (£16 million) for copyright infringement over her hit song All I Want For Christmas Is You.
The singer and her co-writer Walter Afanasieff are both named in the lawsuit, which is being brought by songwriter Andy Stone.
Carey and Afanasieff’s song was released by the US star in 1994 as part of her album Merry Christmas and has gone on to be recognised as one of the most well-known festive hits.
In legal documents filed at the US District Court in the Eastern District of Louisiana, Mr Stone claims that he co-wrote a song with the same name in 1989 and has never given permission for it to be used.
Stone, whose band Vince Vance & The Valiants recorded and released their track in 1989, has accused Carey and Afanasieff of acting in a way that was “designed to exploit the popularity and unique style” of Stone’s song, adding that it “caused confusion”, according to the court documents.
The two songs have different lyrics and melodies.
The documents, obtained by the PA news agency, state that Carey and her collaborators “knowingly, wilfully, and intentionally engaged in a campaign” to infringe Stone’s copyright for the song.
They added the defendants had also committed “acts of unjust enrichment by the unauthorised appropriation of plaintiff’s work and the goodwill associated therewith”.
Stone is seeking damages of 20 million dollars (£16 million).
Merry Christmas was released by Columbia Records on November 1 1994 and became the best-selling US Christmas album of all time, selling more than 15 million copies worldwide.