P. Diddy is being sued by Random House.
The US publishers are demanding that the rap entrepreneur returns an advance of $300,000 [£158,000] paid for an undelivered autobiography.
The deal was brokered in 1998 and the 1999 deadline passed without receipt of a manuscript.
According to the claim filed at Manhattan's Supreme Court, Diddy, real name Sean Combs, was informed in 2000 that he was in breach of contract.
Combs then sued his writing partner, Mikal Gilmore, claiming he left the project after accepting $325,000 [£172,000] to co-author the book.
The case was dropped after Gilmore filed for bankruptcy.
In a statement, Random House said: “We have seldom resorted to a legal course of action with our prospective authors… but Mr Combs has left us no choice.”
A spokesperson for Combs said: “We anticipate that this will be resolved quickly.”