Things are heating up in the legal battle between country artist Blake Shelton and In Touch Weekly's publisher, Bauer. The “Savior Shadow” singer began the legal process in March and has since received a tentative ruling from a United States judge allowing him to move forward with the lawsuit.
According to Billboard magazine, the case was taken before U.S. District Judge Christina Snyder in Los Angeles, on Monday. She found that Shelton, 39, had enough evidence to support his claims that In Touch had not been entirely truthful in their September 2015 story in which they reported he was entering rehab. Although her ruling is not official, it is enough for the Country Music Association award-winner to push forward with his lawsuit.
As the publication points out, Shelton has already launched legal pursuits against Bauer Publishing over the story’s headline, which was “Rehab for Blake,” as well as the story that followed. He vehemently denies many of the claims made in In Touch’s story about his alleged drinking problem as well as his behavior after drinking. The publisher is fairly certain that the ruling will be overturned should the case move forward, according to lawyer Elizabeth McNamara. She also claims that it was Shelton who perpetrated such rumors about his “reputation around excessive drinking,” not the story.
On March 17 it was reported that Shelton had filed a lawsuit against In Touch. TMZ reported that the legal filing was in response to stories about his drinking habits, as well as his marriage to Miranda Lambert. “The Voice” coach reportedly submitted a sworn declaration in which he stated that he has never struggled with substance abuse nor was he unfaithful to Lambert. TMZ reported that the document addressed specific stories, including ones about rehab, hitting “rock bottom,” and being caught with several naked women in the home that he and his ex-wife once shared.
Shelton has been silent about the impending legal battle for the most part. It remains unclear when his legal team and those selected to represent In Touch will face off in court once again.