Judge Denise Cote has granted a motion allowing a group of authors more time to file an amended complaint in its suit against self-publishing service provider Author Solutions and its parent company, Penguin, and also agreed to a new schedule for the case.
The amended complaint will now be filed by July 19, with the Defendants’ response due by August 23. The plaintiffs would then have until September 20, to answer any defense motions, with defense replies due October 11. In addition, a scheduled August 9, conference has been moved to September 13.
The motion to amend the complaint comes after Penguin and Author Solutions filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit against them last month. In its motion to dismiss, Penguin attorneys offered a long list of legal and procedural issues for dismissal, as is common practice, and deemed the complaint “a misguided attempt to make a federal class action out of a series of gripes.”
The motion also sought to sever parent company Penguin—which, since the motion to dismiss, has officially become Penguin Random House—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 suit, filed at the end of April by three Author Solutions clients, alleges fraudulent business practices and asks for $5 million in damages, and seeks class action status.
In an interesting twist, the suit, filed in the Southern District of New York, is before a judge Judge Denise Cote, who is now deciding Apple’s e-book price-fixing trial scandal.
In July of last year Penguin purchased Author Solutions for a reported $116 million.