Singer Gladys Knight is suing to remove her name from the Atlanta restaurants owned by her son, who is charged with stealing $650,000 (around £496,000) in taxes owed to the state of Georgia.
The federal lawsuit filed on Friday says the Gladys Knight's Chicken And Waffles restaurants are failing and damaging the Midnight Train To Georgia singer's reputation.
Her son Shanga Hankerson was charged with theft in June after the Georgia Department of Revenue raided the three restaurants.
The lawsuit says she wrote to her son in July terminating their verbal agreement to use her name and likeness, but nothing has changed since the restaurants went into receivership.
The suit includes an August 17 email from his attorney, Dana Tucker Davis, saying he "has no desire to fight his mother for use of her name".