Penguin and Author Solutions File for Dismissal of Class Action Lawsuit

Posted by Victoria Strauss for Writer Beware

In April, the law firm of Giskan Solotaroff Anderson & Stewart filed a class action lawsuit against Author Solutions Inc. and its parent, Penguin Group, on behalf of three plaintiffs, alleging breach of contract, unjust enrichment, various violations of the California Business and Professional Code, and violation of New York General Business Law.

My blog post about the filing, including the full text of the complaint, can be seen here.

Last week, as expected, ASI and Penguin filed a motion to dismiss, labeling authors’ complaints “a series of gripes” that would be better served by filing individual suits, and seeking to remove Penguin from the lawsuit. According to Publishers Weekly,

In its motion to dismiss, Penguin attorneys offer a long list of legal and procedural issues for dismissal, as is common practice, and deem the complaint “a misguided attempt to make a federal class action out of a series of gripes.”

The motion also seeks to sever parent company Penguin, noting that “no specific misconduct” by Penguin is alleged. The motion says the case boils down to “alleged typographical and formatting errors and supposed delays in publishing their books,” and some “alleged errors associated with royalty payments owed” on some of the plaintiffs books published under Author Solutions imprints.

The plaintiffs may pursue “individual claims,” Penguin attorneys argue, noting that the issues are contract issues “and nothing more,” based upon “supposed errors, delays, or underpayments.” The remainder of the complaint and any potential class action, the motion states, should be dismissed.

The full text of the motion to dismiss can be seen here.

3 Responses

  1. Elizabeth Moon

    I guess Penguin forgot that when you wallow in a pigpen, you smell like a pig.

    They shouldn’t have hooked up with Author Solutions in the first place. Would like to blame it on lack of due diligence by their legal advisors, for the sake of people I know in their org who are principled but have no power to make corporate decisions.

  2. Pingback: Even though it’s part of Random House and Penguin, don’t do business with Author Solutions | Florida Writers Conference Blog

  3. Hiram Wikley

    Author Solutions is notorious and has been much-criticized by experts in self-publishing. Among the more outrageous stungs purported in the Complaint is outright gypping authors by not paying their commissions, setting up phony “independent” social network accounts and websites to refer business to Author Solutions, and using a bewildering array of different company names to try to hide the fact that they are all Author Solutions.