Page last updated at 08:45 GMT, Thursday, 18 December 2008

Singer Houston sued by stepmother

Whitney Houston
Houston is reportedly working on a seventh studio album

Whitney Houston is being sued by her stepmother over a $1m (650,000) life insurance policy left by the singer's father, who died in 2003.

Barbara Houston claims the singer was supposed to use $723,000 (468,000) to pay the mortgage on her father's house.

The stepmother, who still lives in the house, says the remaining money should have been returned to her.

In court papers filed in Newark, New Jersey, she claims the pop star improperly kept the inheritance.

Lawyers for Houston and her stepmother refused to comment on the case.

The singer, who enjoyed huge success in the 1980s with hits including I Wanna Dance With Somebody and I Will Always Love You, has not released a studio album since 2003.

She has reportedly been working on new music to be released next year.

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