Harlequin Cheats Romance Writers On E-Book Royalties: Suit

Law360, New York (July 19, 2012, 6:31 PM EDT) -- Harlequin Enterprises Ltd. on Thursday was hit with a proposed class action in New York federal court accusing the romance novel publisher of breaching contracts by using a shell company to deprive its authors of royalties for electronic books sales.

Plaintiffs Barbara Keiler, Mona Gay Thomas and Linda Barrett accuse Harlequin of wriggling out of its royalties commitments by setting up a Swiss subsidiary through which e-book royalties are routed, resulting in author payments of as little as 3 to 4 percent of the cover price of their books.

Though the authors say their individual agreements with the publishing house provide...

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