In relation to the lawsuit for damages related to actress Seo Ye Ji’s advertisement, a new verdict has been reached!
On November 16, Seo Ye Ji’s agency, Gold Medalist, officially announced, “Regarding the allegations of school violence and other suspicions raised against Seo Ye Ji in the lawsuit with Yuhan Care, it has been confirmed that these allegations are one-sided and have not been proven to be true.”
They further stated, “However, due to the loss of trust from advertisers as a result of the allegations, we have only invoked the partial return of the model fee according to the contract.”
They also said, “These suspicions about Seo Ye Ji are not true, and since these contents have been proven false through the judgment, we urge you to refrain from baseless allegations and indiscriminate criticism against Seo Ye Ji.”
Previously, the Seoul Central District Court’s Civil Conciliation Division 25 (Presiding Judge Song Seung-woo) did not rule in favor of Yuhan Care’s lawsuit for damages and penalty fees (1.275 billion won) against Seo Ye Ji and her agency.
Yuhan Care signed an advertising model contract with Seo Ye Ji in July 2020, but in April 2021, allegations of gaslighting, academic forgery, and school violence were raised against Seo Ye Ji by netizens. In response, Yuhan Care sent an official letter to Seo Ye Ji’s agency demanding the termination of the contract and the return of the model fee, citing a violation of the “maintaining dignity agreement.”
The contract stated that the advertising model should not engage in acts that damage their dignity, such as drunk driving, theft, assault, school violence, drug-related offenses, etc. However, the court ruled, “Even if the suspicions against Seo Ye Ji are true, they all occurred before the contract period,” and “It cannot be concluded that Seo Ye Ji violated the contract based solely on the allegations.”
However, the court deemed it lawful for Yuhan Care to terminate the advertising model contract due to the damage to Seo Ye Ji’s image, and according to the contract clause stating that if the advertisement is canceled after the model fee has been paid, 50% of the model fee should be returned. The court ordered Seo Ye Ji’s agency to pay 225 million won [$174,000] to Yuhan Care.
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**editor’s note: the title of the article has been corrected to reflect the actual conclusion of the trial