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Author Solutions Settles Lawsuit Filed by Authors

20699620022_f209b344e3_kPRH subsidiary Author Solutions has settled one of the class action suits filed by authors, PW reports.

Judge Denise Cote ordered the case discontinued without prejudice on 12 August after having been informed by both parties that a settlement had been reached. The terms of the settlement had not been disclosed, but the announcement was not entirely unexpected.

This case had originally been filled in April 2013 as a class-action lawsuit on behalf of the authors who had done business with the notorious vanity press Author Solutions. The suit was filed by Giskan, Solotaroff, Anderson, & Stewart on behalf of 3 plaintiffs. The authors alleged that ASI had sold useless and ineffective marketing, failed to pay royalties, and generally failed to provide the services that the authors had paid for.

That lawsuit proceeded as a class action through a couple amended complaints and discovery, only to have the class action status denied last month.

In early July, Judge Cote ruled that the plaintiffs did not meet the definition of a class. Mick Rooney has a detailed breakdown of that ruling over at The Independent Publishing Magazine, and he writes that Judge Cote ruled that the plaintiffs could not meet certification requirements and convince the court that Author Solutions had carried out widespread deception on authors as part of its business practices.

In the end, the case was left with just two plaintiffs, Mary Simmons and Jodi Foster, neither of whom lived in New York (where the case was filed). The case had originally included an author from New york, but he dropped out in January 2015.

With no way to sue for a large sum or draw in more authors as plaintiffs, this settlement was inevitable.

This lawsuit is survived by two other  lawsuits filed against Author Solutions in the state of Indiana. Those cases are pending, and I will report on them as they progress.

Update: Writers Beware reports that the two other lawsuits were recently combined into a single suit. WB also posted the most recent ruling (PDF).

images by Daquella maneraBeth Cortez-Neavel

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