Class Action Lawsuit against Tate Publishing is our dream - Tate Publishing

My mother and I co-wrote a cookbook and sent portions of it to Tate Publishing in 2013. We had excellent communication and interaction from the moment we contacted them until the day we signed the contract, which was March 17, 2014. Our Acquisitions Editor was competent and helpful, but that’s the only good thing I can say about Tate. Once we signed with Tate, we were assigned different representation that did almost nothing for us.

This is the BBB complaint we submitted to Oklahoma’s BBB on 2/4/16:
Complaint Details
Multiple issues from production to distribution; chief of which are books not being available, royalties not received, several breaches of contract. We ordered 100 author copies of our book on 6/16/15. We signed a contractual agreement for a $23.99 glossy paged book and they were to arrive in 5-6 weeks. After 10 weeks (no notification of delayed shipment), we got the 100 books wrong (not glossy paged). It took another month to get the correct 100 books, which put us after the national release date and involved 5 canceled book signing events.
The book was to be made available on Amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com specifically per the press release and all promotional items (created and sent by Tate), and in general per our contract (Section IV Subsection 3 a. states that it will “be available in bookstore systems nationwide and on internet sites such as amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com”). Within that same subsection Tate discusses their relationship with distribution centers and other well known chains alluding to the fact that our book will be available in them. As of today, the only place that our book is eligible for purchase is direct through Tate’s website. Although the book is listed on Amazon, it has never been available there. Until 09/11/15 it was listed for pre-order only. After a phone call to Amazon corporate, we were told it was because Tate had sent them nothing and they couldn’t sell something they didn’t have. After that, we contacted Tate via e-mail and phone without a response for a week (I have the written documentation of this). The situation was changed to have the book image, but it was changed to “Currently out of stock” and has remained that way ever since.
In addition to our books not being available anywhere agreed upon, Section II subsection 4 b. of the contract states that we will be paid 40% royalties on all books sold via Tate Publishing’s warehouse. It states that we are to receive that “quarterly by the end of the month following the quarter in which those sales occurred.” We have yet to receive a single check or dollar amount, even though our book has sold something every quarter over the last 3 quarters (2015 Quarter 2, 2015 Quarter 3 and 2015 Quarter 4). Per the agreed terms of the contract, 10 softcover books and 2 ebooks (which, according to Tate is what has been sold, although that seems like a questionably low number based on what customers have said to us) should have totaled $108.75 (although on the quarter 2 report for the ebooks, Tate incorrectly calculated the total for $2.40 less than it should be).
Something else we feel is a breach of contract is the retainer we paid to cover the cost of the marketing representative. We had to pay $3990.00 for the rep, and we have had nothing but issues and problems and lack of communication with the supposed rep. Near every day we get sale offers to buy our own book, even though we’ve never gotten a bulk order on time, we aren’t getting paid for books sold and our books have not been made available anywhere other than at Tate. We only get that $3990 if we sell 1,000 books, but we clearly can’t sell books if they aren’t made available. We are losing money because of this and not being given the opportunity the contract gave us to get out $3,990 back.
The marketing representative has also botched 3 events – the only events that were scheduled for us by Tate. We were given a notice for a potential event on 9/26/15 in Sault Ste. Marie, MI that we were unable to attend. The event was pushed through anyway without our notification or consent. We only found out during a google search and it was left to us to correct the mistake Tate made. They also notified us of 2 events scheduled 10/9/15 and 10/10/15 in Canada. We called the businesses, only to find out only the 9th was agreed on. Again, we were left to correct the mistakes. In addition, we were unable to sell our books in Canada due to international sales regulations. We have each written piece of correspondence between Tate and ourselves that are relevant to these issues, and they can be provided.”

We got a notification on 7/3/16 from the BBB stating, “This complaint has been closed without a response from the business.” Extremely frustrated, we contacted Tate and our lawyer. Our lawyer looked over the contract and found several breaches of contract. It took Tate until the 11th to respond to us and give us excuses that were flat out lies. On 7/22/16 they responded to the BBB concerning the complaint stating that all was resolved:

“To Whom it May Concern:

We have been diligently working with Ms. Heet in order to resolve her issues regarding the publishing of her book. Included are ten pages of notes depicting all correspondence, such as telephone calls and emails with the author and Tate staff.
To address Ms. Heet’s first complaint regarding the delivery of books. Tate has recently as last month partnered with a new printing company, LSI, in order to fill our authors orders in a more precise and timely manner.
Regarding her royalty checks, incorrect data was the cause of checks not being delivered, to date this issue has been resolved. We are actively working to resolve the issue regarding the book availability with vendors such as Amazon and Barnes and Noble.
As you will seen in the notes attached, Ms. Heet’s Author Service Representative, Jan Cara Quinones has been in continual contact with her regarding her complaints.

Sincerely,

Mark Mingle
Vice President
Tate Publishing
127 Trade Center Terrace”

This was the first we had ever heard of Mark Mingle. On Tate’s staff website, Vice President is not listed as his title. Also, when Rita Tate referred to him in an e-mail to us after this, she referred to Mark as the Director of Marketing. Terry Cordingley is supposedly the Director of Marketing. Our response on 7/27/16 was a very obvious refusal:

“To whom it may concern:
We are rejecting the “solution” that Tate has recently submitted in response to the complaint made for myself and coauthor, Gail Van Ess. Below you will find detailed reasoning and explanation why.
As for diligently working with us to resolve our issues, we feel that is an exaggeration. We have been bringing these issues to their attention since July of 2015. We were not contacted once from February 5 to July 11 of this year by anyone representing us. The reason for their contact on July 11, was due to me having written another e-mail threatening legal action for their fragrant breach of contract after the BBB had to close the complaint due to no response from Tate. That is not diligence, that’s negligence.
Mark Mingle stated that there were ten pages of notes attached to this complaint. For one, the file was conveniently corrupt so we saw nothing other than the letter. I have brought this to Tate’s attention and no one seems willing to give us those mysterious ten pages or even acknowledge my request. Secondly, notes of correspondence? I can only assume all ten pages are direct print outs of e-mails we have personally sent them as there is never much of a response from Tate, either verbally or physically; certainly not enough to fill ten pages. If it is our direct e-mails, we don’t care about them. We have them all already. In fact, we have saved each and every response and initiation of contact from both Tate and ourselves.
We don’t accept the excuse of switched printing companies. We were told a year ago that that was happening due to the monumental errors and delays. If it took them a year to switch, that’s incredibly unprofessional on their part. Also, as I have been pouring over our contract and researching author issues with Tate, I found several authors experiencing exactly what have or are experiencing. One author in June of 2016 (one month ago) stated his issues with the delivery of his book that could have been our words from a year ago. Tate gave him the same response they gave us. That doesn’t sound like a switch to me. If they had switched printers, they have an uncanny ability to pick the poorest of printers time and time again. That doesn’t reflect on the printers. That reflects on Tate.
We vehemently protest their “resolution” to our royalty check issue. First of all, it was not “incorrect data” that caused the checks to not be delivered. The checks were never even printed. There was no attempt to print them and there couldn’t have been as it was our own ASR who told me via phone and e-mail that they couldn’t get done because they never had Gail’s SSN; a SSN that was given via phone March of 2014 at the same time that I verbally gave mine. Both SSNs were given during the same (conference) phone call with Alan Duffle, and somehow mine is the only one that stuck. To say that there was an attempt to get them to us if a blatant lie.
Mark Mingle suggested that they didn’t have accurate addresses to send the checks to, which is also a blatant lie. Per our ASR, they apparently didn’t have Gail’s address on file so couldn’t send the checks. They had her address in August and October when they sent her books. Where did it go? She hasn’t moved in over 15 years. Also, we had sent them her address via e-mail twice (this is documented, and even our ASR contacted us to say that she found the e-mail we sent her the address in – last year) and a third time on July 13, 2016.
As it concerns my address, our ASR tried to tell me that they didn’t have my new address because I moved. I moved on April 9, 2016. Tate had already been out of contact with us for a minimum of two months at that point and we should have received four royalty checks prior to my move. I moved during the quarter that just ended – Quarter 2 of 2016. We haven’t even gotten a report on that quarter yet, so the address they had on file for me (that they obviously had since they sent me books) was correct until April 9, 2016. Quarter 2 2015 should have been sent July 2015; Quarter 3, 2015 should have been sent October 2015; Quarter 4, 2015 should have been sent January 2016; and if we had ever gotten a report for Quarter 1, 2016 (which we never have, we in fact have received NOTHING for 2016 even though Amazon both received and sold out of our product in 2016) it would have been sent April 2016, but since we didn’t get a report, that shouldn’t have been an issue. Of course, those dates are laid out in the contract which Tate has been rather lax in complying with.
Also, we have yet to receive a single royalty check so we will absolutely not call this issue resolved. That’s laughable.
Mark stated that they are working to make the book available with online vendors. Why was this attempt not made in the several, several e-mails and notifications we sent them since September 9, 2015? We brought it to their attention time and time again, and they have waited nearly a year to have it figured out? Terry Cordingley sent me an e-mail stating that it was now available at B&N, but our issue is the contract violation with waiting almost a year to make it happen. We also got a marketing report stating that our book was made available for e-books this month. That should have been done on September 8, 2015 per contract; again, another flagrant breach. I have asked why this is, and I have (not surprisingly) not received a response.
That our ASR, Jan, has been in constant contact is a cosmic joke. Jan has sent two e-mails and called once since July 11. That’s 3 pieces of contact in 16 days. The e-mails I sent to her trying to ask her questions have been unanswered by her since July 14. That’s 13 days of no contact. This is, once again, an outright lie.
It is for all the reasons listed above (and so many other breaches of contract, which I am compiling and will be more than happy to supply once finished) that we reject this “solution.”
We do not have a marketing team, and past September, never have. We have been given a website which we have little use for, a clip that was very little shown and a Facebook page that was given to us EIGHT MONTHS after the book was released. We also have no use for this Facebook page as I, myself, created (in ten minutes) in June of last year. Mine looks better and has more followers, so that is the one we will maintain. There were three events scheduled for us through Tate; one we never agreed to nor were we notified it existed. We found it during a Google search for our book and had to call the business and cancel due to one of us being out of town. There were two they scheduled for Canada in October that was wrong from start to finish. The owner of the establishments was only aware of one of the events and only wanted one event. The other issue with these was that we weren’t even allowed to bring our books to sell in that country, we had to leave all 100 of them at customs and sit at a table with nothing but ourselves and some book marks. Those were the only “three” events scheduled for us by Tate.
Therefore, we are still requesting our marketing retainer back. We don’t have a marketing team or a publicist and contractually, that is what the $3990 was for. If that’s not what it’s going towards, Tate is contractually obligated to return that money. We are also demanding our royalty checks that, by law and contract, Tate owes us. It has been over 2 weeks since they acknowledged completion of all information to print them, yet we haven’t received them.
We await a legitimate solution and resolution.”

On 8/11/16 the BBB contacted us again to say that the complaint had been closed as unresolved. On 8/22/16 Tate responded to the complaint:

” Whom It May Concern,
In responding back to Ms. Heet regarding her rejection of resolution to her original complaint filed with the BBB. Although Ms. Heet states that it is misconception that Tate has been diligently working to resolve her complaints and issues, we have been actively pursuing a resolution to her complaints. She states that NO ONE that represents herself or Ms. Von Ess within Tate Publishing has not had any contact/communication to either of them since February 2016. Although there has not been direct communication from Mr. Cordningley, Jan Cara Quinoes (whom is the ASR/Assistant to Marketing Representative) has been in contact with Ms. Van Ess. [I omitted the “documentation” they supplied but have it and am able to produce it if desired.] We do apologize that the internal notes/exhibits were not applicable for Ms. Heet’s review. In no way did we maliciously intend for the file to become damaged. We have been experiencing numerous errors with the new system that the BBB has implemented through their website. We are more than happy to supply the internal notes to Ms. Heet and Ms. Van Ess.
Regarding Ms. Heet and Ms. Von Ess’s complaints and issues surrounding book shipments, Tate has partnered with the largest printing company as this June. This partnership has given Tate Publishing the ability to have the fastest print turnaround in the publishing industry and will ensure to resolve all current and future author issues surrounding deliveries and shipments of book orders.
Addressing Ms. Heet and Ms. Van Ess issues regarding royalties (payments and statements), We currently do not have any sales data to report, and as we mentioned in our initial response,we had to update our accounting database to include and reflect Ms. Heet’s correct address. As future sales occur, any royalties will be sent to this address on file, and we will ensure that she is paid for any and all books reported sold. As sensitive information is located with the sales report, this document is available and will be sent directly to Ms. Heet and Ms. Von Ess.
We do apologize for any miscommunication on our behalf and our excited to move forward with Ms. Heet and Ms. Von Ess project.
Sincerely,
Mark Mingle
Vice President
Tate Publishing and Enterprises, LLC”

On the same day (8/22/16), we responded with another obvious refusal.
“BBB and Tate Publishing:

First of all the second author’s last name is VAN ESS not Von Ess, but this mistake has been made before (on our press release which took over 24 hours to correct) and it’s only written to the authors so it’s not as big of a mistake.

In regards to our belief that Tate is not being as diligent as the situation requires, it’s a belief and a feeling. In my rebuttal I used phrases like, “we find it hard to believe.” There is no way for us to make that determination with absolution not being at Tate. What we’re basing it on are the results (or lack of) we are (or are not) seeing on our end. Did Tate make the book available for e-download? Yes. Should it have been done in September of 2015 instead of July of 2016? Contractually, yes. Did Tate stock our books at Amazon? Yes. Was it when they were contractually obligated to? No. Our book was to be available there on its release date and it wasn’t until February of 2016 and only after we fought with them to get it there for 5 months. Our biggest problem with this “diligence” is that there is no movement until we put up a fuss. Even then there’s a 50/50 chance that things will be completed. Even now, questions to our ASR and our “marketing rep” have gone unanswered. Not all of them, just the ones we have to keep asking over and over again. We expected our publishing company to be diligent as it pertains to the sale and production of our book simply because it’s their job, not because their authors have demanded they do what they are contractually required to do.

I stated that we hadn’t had contact with Terry Cordingley since February 2016 aside from the sale offers that are automatically sent out via group message. I did state that we hadn’t heard from Jan since November of 2015. I am supposed to be the point of contact for Tate. We’ve established this and reestablished this more than once with Jan and Terry. Any e-mail that is sent to my Gail needs to have me on it, even if it’s just Gail who wrote originally. We had it set up this way because I am the one more in my e-mail and I understand sending and cc’ing. Gail does not. I don’t always get the e-mails Gail sends because I haven’t been cc’d. She has sent a few to me and Jan (the same e-mail sent to two people), but when Jane replies it only gets sent to the author. On my end it appears that she hasn’t responded to a question asked when that happens. When our ASR responds to Gail’s inquiries, it is her job to make me aware of HER response to it (not Gail’s response, Jan’s) because I am the point of contact. We were told by Tate they wouldn’t be writing and responding to us individually so we needed only one of us to be that contact; it’s why we set me up as that point of contact. So, while one of the authors may have heard from Jan, the point of contact hadn’t heard from her since November 2015.
On April 15, it looks like Jan asked Barnes and Noble to update the picture of our book. That’s seven months after the release date, and 7 months after we asked them to get our book on the site and get a picture up. We asked them more than once to get those things done and now I see it wasn’t even looked into until 7 months after we tried getting it done. This is one of the results we factor into our belief Tate isn’t as diligent with us as they would like to think. Maybe it’s miscommunication amongst them, maybe they assume someone else is getting it done, we don’t know. What we do know is this is usually how it goes for our book at Tate.
I stand by our statement that we don’t have a marketing rep besides the fact that we get e-mails once every few months that are auto generated and telling us of activity. The reason we stand by this is because we have asked them on more than one occasion to stop looking into things in that area. We have asked them more than once to look into Wisconsin. At one point Jan had told us it automatically looks for venues within a certain distance from the author. We pointed out at that time one of the authors lived in Wisconsin. We noticed two things: the marketing report is automated and so is the search for venues. If we have someone scheduling events and looking for places in an area we said we’d be unable to make it to, we don’t consider that a rep. A rep represents their author. Doing the opposite of what we are able to do is not representing us. As previously stated, we made things very easy for Tate by giving them five pages worth of information in regards to proprietors and venues, per their request, none of which has been used.
I would like the internal notes sent direct to me, yes. I would like to be made aware of what Tate has been doing. In fact, we have been requesting more frequent contact and more details on what they’ve been doing with our book. We made it known very clearly we wanted daily communication but settled for weekly communication on what Tate is doing for problems and the book in general since July of 2015. That contact was upheld for a few weeks before disintegrating into sporadic contact.
Book shipments weren’t a huge deal in our complaint, but they are the reason we don’t want to do book signings at a venue that doesn’t purchase their own copies and why we won’t order from Tate with their “special” offers. Our proof in this is the numerous times we got our book wrong (and each time we were told it was a problem with the printers), and the more than double wait time to get our books in the first place. Our faith has been somewhat broken in this regard so we can’t put a lot of stock in the idea that this new printer will solve all their issues. When we had problems getting our books in July 2015, we were told they were switching printers then, too.
I’m trying to be professional as it pertains to the royalties, but I’m very, very upset about this situation. If you don’t have current sales data to report and have none since December 2015, my address should never have been an issue. I don’t know how to make you understand that that is a 100% false excuse. I did not change my address until quarter two of 2016. By that time, according to law and our contract, we should have already RECEIVED THREE royalty checks. I laid out the dates in our refusal of Tate’s “solution.” My address should NEVER have been a factor because Tate stated that there have been no sales report this year so far (even though Amazon sold every copy of our book they had from February to June, so we know for a fact there were sales, but understand Amazon may not have sent them a report yet however unlikely that is) and I did not move until this year!! This is extremely frustrating to have to continue to defend this. Here is a break down:

Quarter 2 2015, sales made, sales report issued, royalty check SHOULD have been sent July 2015. MAUREEN STILL AT ADDRESS ON FILE.
Quarter 3 2015, sales made, sales report issued, royalty check SHOULD have been sent October 2015. MAUREEN STILL AT ADDRESS ON FILE.
Quarter 4 2015 sales made, sales report issued, royalty check SHOULD have been sent January 2015. MAUREEN STILL AT ADDRESS ON FILE.
Quarter 1 2016 sales made, no sales report issued, theoretically no royalty check sent until sales receipts acquired. MAUREEN MOVED MID APRIL in Quarter 2 2016.
And yet, even though Tate’s reasoning is that they only had to update their address book with my new address, they’ve had that address for a month and a half and STILL NO ROYALTY CHECK. Not only is the address claim bogus according to law via our contract, it still hasn’t been rectified after Tate declared the situation resolved. That is legally our money for a product we created and Tate can’t seem to get it together to get it to us. Honestly, this is the biggest reason we have lost all faith in Tate; all. Tate keeps saying they will insure we get paid, but we have been selling books for 14 months now and haven’t seen a single dime.
We don’t want excuses anymore. It’s feeling a lot like their word against ours and our word against theirs. We have a lot of documentation to back up each complaint we made and we tried to resolve this issue without going to the BBB. We filed with the BBB as a last resort, and it appears we may need to take another step.
Again, we are requesting the full reimbursement of our marketing retainer for a total of $3990.00 for each reason already stated, as well as every single royalty owed us since June of 2015, along with every single sales receipt and report since June of 2015 up until today. Because of how Tate has handled every situation from September 2014 to now, we can accept no less.
We understand this will mean an end to our contract and so an end to Tate Publishing printing and distributing our book. If necessary, we will compile a list of other willing authors to join suit with us so we can all get what Tate owes us. We have no desire to see it come to that point, but if that’s what it takes to get what is legally and contractually ours we have no other choice.
Thank you,
Maureen Heet”

Not hearing anything from them whatsoever, our lawyer worked with us to try to garner some action. On 9/9/16, after continued radio silence I contacted Tate:

“Tate:
We have been trying to handle and deal with you professionally and respectfully, but you have, so far, been unwilling to comply.
We submitted a complaint to the OK BBB in February due to refusal to pay us our royalties due. You did not respond to the complaint until July 22 when they contacted us to say you never responded (they closed the complaint on 7/3 for that reason). Even then, it took me contacting you on 7/7 before you did anything. When you responded to them on 7/22, Tate told the BBB the issue was resolved. We officially rejected that on 7/27, due to the falsity of that statement. On 8/11, the complaint was closed AGAIN due to lack of response from Tate. On 8/22 you responded to our rejection stating, again, that the matter was resolved. We, of course, rejected it on the same day (8/22) because the entire rebuttal rang false.

It is now September 9 and we have yet to receive a single penny from Tate Publishing for our 7 quarters of sales. We are currently in our 8th quarter with Tate. On July 13 we were told Tate had everything they needed to send us our royalties. That was 4 days shy of TWO MONTHS ago. Our lawyer sent you a letter (which I have included for your SECOND look) telling Tate to pay us our royalties in full, give us every sales receipt and report to date, refund our $3990.00 and give us leave from our contract due to flagrant and frequent breaches of contract. Tate was given 14 days to respond and the letter was sent 8/12/16. We gave you an additional 2 weeks and still we have heard nothing.
We have been in contact with some other authors who are currently experiencing what we are with you and they are equally as upset. They are willing to join with us to procure what we are legally and contractually entitled to. I have also CC’d our lawyer so he is kept aware of everything that is happening.
We have several pieces of documentation to support our claims and warrant a release from contract as well as a full refund of the money you were paid that has not been allocated as you were legally required to do.
We are expectantly awaiting your speedy response, a quick delivery of all our funds and a formal documentation declaring our release of contract with full repayment and distribution of all royalties in full. We understand this means that Tate will no longer produce and sell our product. ”

Rita Tate was being contacted every time we responded to them with issues and proof from June 2015 until this month. Only recently has she replied confused why she was being involved at all:

“Hello, Maureen – I received your note below copied to me. I am actually not involved in the production side of our business, (I am a writer for our celebrity clients) however, I am sorry that you are having issues you feel are unaddressed and I thank you for making us aware. I am confident that our Director of Marketing, Mark Mingle, or someone on his great staff, will look into each one and get back with you as soon as possible. I also know that we will be able to solve every concern to your satisfaction.
On a side note, I want to order a personal copy of your book – the subject of nutrition and a gluten-free diet is more relevant than ever and I look forward to reading it! Blessings today, Maureen!”

After she was contacted again after this, we received this e-mail from Rita:

“Well, again, I don’t know why I AM so privileged to get these notes from upset author. Is she getting responses needed guys? Is she being contacted directly and not just by phone? Let me know if I can do anything to appease situation. ”

We have approximately 150 pages of documentation concerning all contact (including proof of breaches in contract, complaints and responses, supposed resolutions and all missteps and repeated information). All of these documents are available upon request. We included the BBB correspondence because we felt it explained the situation in full.
To this day we have received no money from Tate Publishing; they’ve stopped responding to all correspondence and have ignored our lawyer’s requests. Because our lawyer is licensed to practice law in our state and not Oklahoma, he can only do so much in terms of legal action. At this time, we are trying to gather other Tate authors who have been denied their legal and contractual rights in terms of payments, publication and marketing. We were notified by another author that the attorney general in OK was investigating Tate, so our next step is to contact that office and see what actions we need to take to bring suit against them. It’s not something we want to do, but something Tate has made necessary by how they run their business. If you have any information to add please respond here.

For Tate Publishing Representatives or Owners

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Comments About Tate Publishing Review: Class Action Lawsuit against Tate Publishing is our dream

  • Maureen Heet

    I went through every single comment yesterday and personally responded to them and somehow they all disappeared. To sum up, to contact me concerning the review I wrote above and suit possibilities, email me at godsunfailinggrace@gmail.com. I also found out Tate closed their doors by stumbling upon the information late last night. I went to post a link for a friend to our book on Amazon and noticed the paperback was no longer available through them. Then I went to Tate’s page and found out all the new delightful new information,

    Also, If you go to OK BBB site, there’s an alert concerning Tate closing their doors. In that alert they give you easy links to file a complaint with them and with the OK Attorney General. There is another site that has been set up to connect disenfranchised Tate authors and to keep us as up to date as possible concerning Tate publishing. Here is the website: http://tate.nodejitsu.ninja/start-here.

    If you go to Tate’s new site (Transition Information Center or some other nonsense), they appear to offer authors a way to opt out of this transition phase. I urge you to look at the wording they have chosen. They have no solution on the horizon and they have no transition possibilities available or foreseeable. I also urge you NOT to sign that release form. Not only are they requesting $50 to get hard copies of your work back (despite the fact that you own the copyrights to your own work per contract and basic law), but upon signing the document you are saying that you absolve them from all wrongdoing and excuse them from giving you all money owed you and all money requested. They have also worded it so that it appears as you the author is requesting a termination of the contract and all dealings with Tate, even though they are the ones who have decided to stop publishing the works. This is the excerpt from the contract release:

    “I, the undersigned, hereby terminate my contractual agreement(s) with Tate Publishing & Enterprises, LLC and its subsidiaries,
    successors, and heirs, for the above listed work effective as of January ____, 2017. I agree to indemnify and hold harmless Tate
    Publishing & Enterprises, LLC and its subsidiaries, officers, executives, employees, and any such heirs they may have. I understand
    that termination of these agreements does not entitle me to any refund or monetary compensation whatsoever”

    I have notified our lawyer of all these things, and hopefully within the week he will have some information and/or options for us to pursue. Contact me at the email address I listed to be a part of that discussion.

  • Maureen Heet

    A LOT of good information here, please check this site out.

    http://tate.nodejitsu.ninja/start-here

  • Maureen Heet

    FYI, read the fine print of the forms currently on their site. The forms state that by signing them, you absolve them from all wrong doing and all monetary repayment.

  • Maureen Heet

    DO NOT sign any of the forms on their new site. If you read the print, it absolves them of any monetary repayment and of all wrongs.

  • Maureen Heet

    Please e-mail me: godsunfailinggrace@gmail.com if you would like to be included. I am not guaranteeing anything will come of it, especially considering all author contracts maintain arbitration must take place in Oklahoma, so an Oklahoma barred attorney would have to be attained. However, since they closed their doors, contracts might be void. I have contacted my lawyer to see what options are available under the new circumstances.

  • Nancy Jasin Ensley

    I also am frustrated with the lack of response from Tate. They were wonderful to work with and my book was in production when the bottom fell out. I have no idea what the status of my book is and just want my $1300 refunded as well as my final draft of my book, “Mitered Corners”. Please add me to the class action lawsuit. I am not going to pay $50 to get the final proof of my book when I had contracted for a finished product and the marketing identified in the contract. Their website tells me that I no longer have a valid account. This is so upsetting as several people contributed to the book and were anxiously awaiting publication.

    • Maureen Heet

      Please, contact me. My e-mail and information is above.

  • Kristen Willis

    Please add me to any class action lawsuit again Tate Publishing as well. I’ve had 3 books published with Tate and I haven’t seen a royalty check since 2013 even though I know I am owed money.

    • Maureen Heet

      See above comment. Sorry – it wouldn’t let me post as I wanted, so I’m going to do a general posting.

  • Joe Schifferli

    Please add me to any class action lawsuit against Tate Publishing. My book was released, had sales and no royalties were sent to me as promised in the contract. Have email verifications of this.

    • Maureen Heet

      Feel free to contact me – my information is listed above.

  • M. Joseph Turner

    Here is my suggestion for everyone as a place to start. I wrote to the OK Atty Generals office; Consumer Protection Unit and here is part of what they wrote back: “before taking formal legal action against a person or business, our office typically must wait for a pattern of fraudulent or deceptive conduct to develop. This pattern often can be proven only through receipt of multiple complaints concerning the same practices employed by the same business.”
    We have the numbers to prove there is definitely a PATTERN and every one of us has been defrauded or deceived by Tate Publishing so let’s get together in numbers and write to the Office of Attorney General State of Oklahoma and show them that action IS warranted. You can do it online from their website. Good luck to us all!

  • Liz Gaudet Hilby

    I do not think a Class Action Lawsuit has been started for authors against Tate. If I am wrong, please share how to join or if it is too late to join. We have many authors saying count me in but nowhere to join in. hum…

    • Maureen Heet

      There has not been one yet. I am aware of an author in 2014 and one in 2015 that filed suit, though I don’t know how they ended. I know Xerox filed a 1.7 million dollar lawsuit and met them in court in January. I also know that Tate, allegedly, morphed into Lux Creative Concepts, so that’s another entity to hold accountable. Please feel free to contact me – my information is in the comments above.

  • Michelle Lee-king

    Please add me to any class action lawsuit against tate publishing. I can be reached at michelle.leeking@comcast.net

    • Maureen Heet

      Please, feel free to contact me – my information is above in the comments.

  • Kim

    I have been treated for the most part very well by Tate’s but I did pay a lifetime fee of $900.00 for publishing rights. My 2nd book had made it to the next to the last stage before being published when all this occurred. I would like to be reimbursed for my money paid as I consider this a breach of contract. I was offered to separate from them for a fee of $50.00 which just doesn’t seem right plus I am now wondering about the royalties as well. I am willing to join a class action suit. Just tell me what to do.

    • Maureen Heet

      That offer of $50 is absolving them from everything – I wouldn’t sign that if I were you. Feel free to contact me. My information is above. I am (and have been) gathering as much information and intel as possible to bring suit against them. Not to give more than required, but just to pay authors their royalties (which is theirs by law) and the return of the misappropriated funds given under false pretenses.

  • CS

    Please add me to your class action against Tate. Can be reached at melnrs@charter.net

    • Maureen Heet

      I put my information above in the comments, please feel free to contact me.

  • Guido Kees

    Hi, colleagues authors. Same problems over here (Belgium, Europe). No respons, no royalties for my book ‘The Pencil’. It’s published in Europe (luckely not by Tate) as well and movie rights are sold. Feature film will be ready in 2018. I can’t get any reply from Tate and found out they run with all the money from their ‘Clients’… Please keep me informed about Class Action. I will put my name on the list as well. Guido.kees@telenet.be http://www.guidokees.be

    • Maureen Heet

      I have listed my information above in the comments, please, don’t hesitate to contact me.

  • Cherie L stechly

    I would like to be added to this class action suit. I’m saddened by this whole process. Tate keeps sending me a form for release of my contract with them but I have to pay $50 to do so, that is so wrong. What happened to the money I paid and they did not market well. I can’t sign or participate in this release until I know my rights. Can you please let me know what the process is? My email is queeneesplace@yahoo. Thank you

    • Maureen Heet

      DO NOT SIGN THAT. They keep sending it because in signing it, you absolve them from EVERYTHING including any money owed to you. Please feel free to contact me – my information is in a comment above. My lawyer has been contacted and we will hopefully be going over options tomorrow.

  • TTMWMarshall

    Yup, I got skunked, too.

    Since the beginning (2010), there was a smattering of individuals – a very small smattering – who excelled at their jobs. My editor – the most important person – was uninterested in either his job or my book. I couldn’t keep up with the number of marketing reps were assigned to me; that should’ve been at least a yellow flag.

    Then this past June, I ordered another box of hardbacks in response to another one of Tate’s many promotionals that flooded my inbox. Needless to say, the books never arrived and Tate thieved my $1200 (if they make reparations, I will publicly apologize herein).

    I emailed them in September re: the books that never arrived. I got a couple responses that sounded genuine (i.e., “We’re looking into it. We’re changing printers. When we find out more we’ll let you know …. blah, blah, blah ….”).

    So along comes November and there are still no books on my doorstep. So I email and I call and call and call. There’s never an answer, just a voicemail. Then the person whose voicemail box it is never calls back. I got that very queasy feeling in the pit of my stomach that comes with being had.

    I looked up Tate online and sure enough there were website after website reporting that Tate was being sued by this vendor and that vendor, with complaints by many authors as well. I had been had. Skunked. Tate promoting book sales and other services with no intention of fulfilling the orders. That’s bad. That’s theft.

    I contacted American Express, but they informed me that too much time had passed since the purchase for them to open a claim.

    • Maureen Heet

      If you want to file a suit, please feel free to contact me – my information is in a comment above.

  • Joan Stambaugh

    I can say ditto to everything said. Working with Tate has been a huge scam, and would definitely join any pursuits of a class action suit. There are obviously a lot of us disgruntled authors, so how do we proceed?

    • Maureen Heet

      I have written to my lawyer and will hopefully hear some options tomorrow. I, unfortunately, found out about Tate closing their doors accidentally tonight. We, as their authors, were never notified. However, I have been gathering as much personal information and public intel as I could over the past year. Please feel free to contact me to see what our options are – my information is in a comment above.

  • Tiah Marie Rodriguez-Crawl

    I have been dissatisfied with Tate from the point they were working on my book cover in 2014 to current. I have had problems with being able to reach key contact persons, books arriving late/damaged, lack of appropriate marketing and attention to concerns/venues for my book and no marketing reports/royalties. I even seen my book cover design as another company’s logo! I asked if my book cover design was illegally used by Tate or the other company, but received no response.

    I thought #TatePublishing was a professional, Christian publishing company, but after the print of my book (which I was dissatisfied with), I could not get things changed or fixed without paying more money or get adequate, timely attention to my concerns. If I chose to order books or supplies, I would get immediate attention.

    Tate Publishing also made it seem like they could get me in to Barnes and Noble for book signings and later had many excuses why they couldn’t. Their marketing help fell short also – sending me a book trailer for my Christmas book after Christmas, Press releases not going out and generating marketing reports with the venues telling me they were not previously contacted by Tate. I recently got myself 3 book signings at one particular Barnes and Noble. They bought 55 books between September and November 2016 and I have not received any royalties. I haven’t received royalties for books I know werepurchased online through Tate since my book’s release in October 2014! There is also little way to monitor what amount of books have been bought through Tate and how much they really owe me! I have been planning to sue them for breach of contract and no longer deal with them. Tate recenlty initiated the opportunity to end the contract ( for a fee of $50). This offer arises in the midst if them closing and battling lawsuits. They have offered all authors an option to end contract due to their “transition” but they also put in there that doing so means they will not owe us anything or send any payments.
    I am planning to write OK Congressmen and BBB to officially complain. Please add me to your list of authors to contact! I have kept all of my documentation, too.

    Ryan Tate should be ashamed of himself!
    – Tiah Rodriguez-Crawl

    • Maureen Heet

      Don’t sign the $50 release. According to that release, upon signing it, you absolve them from all responsibility, including money owed you. Please contact me – my information is in a comment above.

  • M. Joseph Turner

    Class action suit is the logical avenue to pursue. After paying thousands of dollars I tried setting up a cross country book tour as Tate advertised Barnes & Noble as someone they work closely with and claimed any books purchased by B&N for a signing event would be bought back by Tate. What I found out was, B&N won’t sponsor Tate authors, and if you want to sell books in their store you have to provide your own because “Tate doesn’t pay their bills”. The first set of books I ordered took months to arrive, forcing me to have to cancel events I had set up myself. It was one missed opportunity after another to sell and promote my book. Some contacted me on social media that they never received the books they ordered; so I sent them a copy I had purchased at no additional charge to them in order to preserve my reputation. Numerous people at an event showed me on their phones as they ordered my book online through Amazon; yet when quarterly Royalties were posted Tate claimed I had zero or only a couple of sales! You will never get your initial investment paid back after 1,000 sales as they promised as long as they are keeping the books. Paid extra for “commercial trailer guaranteed to be seen in thousands of homes in major markets!” Never happened! And every person I was able to contact said they would look into it until they are now unavailable and never called or emailed me back. I have 100 emails from Tate offering additional services for additional fees. Why would I pay them more money when I have got nothing in return for my initial investment of thousands of dollars? Services and products never provided, emails and phone calls not returned, royalties never paid. Tate Publishing is nothing more than a sham.
    celebvip@hotmail.com.

    • Maureen Heet

      If you would like, contact me at the email I have listed in an above comment. I am gathering as much information as I can for a suit. Although, not guaranteeing anything will come of it.

  • M. Joseph Turner

    Class action suit seems most logical avenue to pursue. I also paid thousands and got nothing in return. Tried setting up book tours across country with Barnes & Noble (which Tate told me would supply books and any not sold would be bought back by Tate), only to be told by B&N they would not deal with Tate authors because Tate didn’t pay their bills. Paid extra for “commercial trailer, Guaranteed to be seen in thousands of homes” which never happened. Complaints from friends and others of ordering but never receiving their books. I ended up sending copies out of my personal supply that I had to pay for because I didn’t want it to reflect negatively on me. Quarterly Royalty statements reflecting no sales, or just a couple when I personally witnessed people order my book through Amazon from their phones. Services paid for but never provided, products ordered but took months to get, emails and phone calls never returned. I have 100 emails from Tate offering more incentives for additional fee’s! Why would I send them more money when they never fulfilled the original contract? celebvip@hotmail.com.

    • Eneck Leger

      I want to join you in your class action lawsuit

      • M. Joseph Turner

        I’m not sure how to get one started Eneck but I’m betting there is one of us out there with the know how to get it done!

      • M. Joseph Turner

        I wrote to OK Attorney General Consumer Protection Unit and this was part of their reply: “before taking formal legal action against a person or business, our office typically must wait for a pattern of fraudulent or deceptive conduct to develop. This Pattern often can be proven only through receipt of multiple complaints concerning the same practices employed by the same business.”
        So my recommendation is for everyone who has been victimized by Tate to write to the Office of Attorney General State of Oklahoma citing your complaints! If we all pull together maybe we can get the ball rolling. Spread the word.

      • Maureen Heet

        I have contacted my lawyer – he has actually been working with me for over a year to try to get us out of a contract, but since he is a Michigan attorney, he doesn’t have the bar in OK. Per contract all arbitration must take place in OK. However, now that they’ve closed their doors, contracts may be void. DO NOT SIGN that $50 release – it absolves them from everything. If our contracts are void, an attorney may be able to file with an out of state bar. I will hopefully know more tomorrow. PLEASE, Eneck and M. Joseph, feel free to contact me at the email I listed in an above comment.

  • Jonathan Talley

    I have experienced the same with a book I released. We made a book order in November 2016 and never received it, nor did I ever receive a royalty check for books sold since 2015. I would definitely be interested in a lawsuit to recover losses and or punish this dishonesty. Please let me know how to become part of this. jonathantalley56@gmail.com

    • Maureen Heet

      Jonathan, please email at the email listed in an above comment. I am working towards this goal and will know more in the coming week what we can do to accomplish it.

  • Bob Schummer

    I’m interested in getting involved in any action that will help me and others recover their money from Tate. I have had all the same issues as everyone else, plus a few more. bmjschum@charter.net

    • Maureen Heet

      Bob, please contact me at the email I listed in an above comment. I am compiling information for this process.

  • Angie Thompson Neal

    I’m in! I have had same exact issues! What do we need to do? ajncccslp@gmail.com

    • Liz Gaudet Hilby

      How do more authors join in on the lawsuit? There is power in numbers! eghilby@yahoo.com

      • Eneck Leger

        Let me know . I want to be part of the class action lawsuit 908 764 0634

        • Maureen Heet

          Eneck, I listed my email in an above comment. Please feel free to contact me there.

      • Maureen Heet

        We ask, and we seek as many authors as we can. I have had a couple contact me since writing this piece. Please email me at the address I listed in an above comment.

    • Crystal Lee

      I’m in! I’m angered and I feel that we all deserve our money back.

      • Maureen Heet

        Crystal, I’ve listed my e-mail in an above comment. Please feel free to contact me.

    • Maureen Heet

      Please e-mail me at the email I listed in an above comment. I will hear back from my lawyer this week.

  • Eddie Mae Rose

    I am in the same boat, please let me what and where to go with this. I only get e-mail to buy my own book all the advertisement I paid for never happen someone please put up a site for all of us to get the help we need

    • Maureen Heet

      Eddie, you can contact me at the email I listed in an above comment.

  • Kim

    I sent a manuscript in November 2016. As soon as they got my money, they stopped communicating. My book is just a simple, rhyming book for children and I waited for them to drop the price to $300 before I signed. That’s not a lot of money in the grand scheme of things but it’s the price THEY agreed to and the service was not provided. I received an email today with an attachment to release me from my contract but no refund and of course, no liability on the part of Tate. I want my money back!

    • Eneck Leger

      Let me know please .I want to be included in the class action lawsuit 908 764 0634

    • Maureen Heet

      They closed their doors January 17 of this year. They are calling it a transition, but it’s not. Contact me at the email I listed above. I’d like to get numbers to my attorney.

  • T W Whistler III

    Well, Royalty check(s)? I got one right in front of me. Dated: 01.31.2016 Huge Total: $4.80 bank of: Bancfirst #205300 That’s it, no more royalties. Yes Jan.31.2016. Last Sept.02.2016 I paid for my new(????) Hard Cover book. Invoice said delivery 7-10 business days. Maybe they meant 7-10 years. One day later I paid for a ‘cover redesign’ for the 2nd edition of my paper back. NEVER RECEIVED. I have emailed Ronnie, Daan, Debkie, Christina, Tim, Daxton & Trinity to no avail. I do have every email from the first date in 2014 to present. I also have my contract. (hope it’s not toilet paper).
    I have only 50 1st edition copies of my poetry book left “it’s a Thought” for only 11.99usd domestic USPS mailing.

    • Maureen Heet

      If you’d like to be kept informed, contact me at the email I listed above. I’m in touch with my lawyer and hopefully within this week I’ll have some options.

  • Jen

    My book has been with Tate since 2008, and now their doors. What are we, Tate clients, to do? Tate was quoted in the new today: “We don’t have many staff there,” Tate said Thursday. “But we are going to help authors transition to different publishers, different imprinters, to make sure they all have got good homes. We want to give them as many as options as possible.”

    • Eneck Leger

      Every 3 or 4 quarters I received a check for 99 cents, 89 cents m that tells me they sell my books and they keep the money .I want to be part of the class action lawsuit908 764 0634

    • Maureen Heet

      Please contact me at the email I listed in an above comment.

  • Tamara Minard

    I am in the same boat. Is anyone filing a class action lawsuit?

    • Maureen Heet

      From what I’ve been able to see, only a suit filed by an author in 2014 and another in 2015 are the only author suits filed. I assume that has more to do witht eh contract stating arbitration can only be done in OK, severely limiting legal council options. However, with the closing of their operation, contract may be void, so they may no longer be a barrier. Contact me at the email I listed in an above comment.

  • Phyl

    If there is a law suit please e mail me.

    • Maureen Heet

      Feel free to contact me at the email I listed above.

  • Phyl

    I published a book with them. The book was published with errors. They only sent me 1 royalty check and I haven’t heard anything from them. I’m in.
    Phyl Locklear

  • I’m in. Did you all get the email today.

    • Eneck Leger

      These people are croocks.They are very bad people and we can not let them get away .let us start the class action lawsuit as quick as possible 908 764 0634

    • Maureen Heet

      I have yet to receive any communication whatsoever from Tate. I just stumbled upon this information tonight. Please contact me at the email I listed in an above comment.

  • Laurie Kehoe

    I am in this pickle too. Are we going to file a class action? I’m in.

    • Maureen Heet

      Contact me at the email I listed in an above comment. I’d like to get some numbers to my attorney.

  • ML Author

    Hi, I’m also one of the many authors finding themselves in this pickle. Sadly, I signed up with Tate, and forked over my dough, a month or two before the volcano of complaints went nuclear.

    I’ve been trying to get in touch with them, but to no avail. I’ve had a squad of Project Managers, editors and my book is still on the slap waiting for some CPR.

    Now, my question is this: why in God’s sake do we have to take it lying down? Way I hear it, the only true way to kill a vampire is to stake its heart, and to make a swindler bleed simply dropkick them where it hurts; HIS WALLET.

    Everyone on this forum, and countless others, has a complaint against Tate. Everyone is steaming and hot under the collar. So, my question is, why aren’t we presenting an organized front?

    Frankly, it’s not just a case of getting our money back, it’s a case of being abused. Way I hear it it’s not just a breach of contract and ethics, but an assualt on our livelihood, and our sanity… And, THAT is a civil dispute goldmine, and a PR nightmare with punitive damages tattooed on its forehead with blazing letters.

    • Maureen Heet

      PLEASE, contact me at the email I listed in an above comment. Power in numbers, and I’d like my attorney to know those numbers.

  • Zachariah Rippee

    I have just received an email saying:

    “Ryan Tate didn’t pay his employees and your book will never be finished. He has no more employees, editors, designers, printers, and marketing consultants, but he still keep on selling and making promises on finishing your book.”

    Where’s that Facebook page?

    • Maureen Heet

      Everything has been shut down. Feel free to email me at the email I listed in an above comment.

  • Milo Kelley

    I have exacting the same issues with Tate. Please go to this Facebook page to address this. “Class Action Suit against Tate Publishing” This way we can coordinate someone that can lead us and locate an appropriate attorney to begin this action.

    • Angie Thompson Neal

      I can’t find the Facebook page? Please clarify.

      • Liz Gaudet Hilby

        I did not see a class action suite on the FB page.

        • Maureen Heet

          There isn’t one, but feel free to contact me at the email I listed in a comment above.

    • Maureen Heet

      Are you saying you created this facebook page or that people should go to Tate’s page and convene with this? Because that page doesn’t exist anymore, or never did. You can contact me at the email I listed above, though.

  • K

    I am checking into a class action suit when I return to OK in Jan. 2016. I am having terrible issues with them.

    • Maureen Heet

      Feel free to email at the email I listed above.

  • Unhappy in NC

    Wow very same experience…I have had noncontact from Tate publishing in over 30 days I signed the contract in August( big mistake) found out about the problems in early september2016 requested my money back and they refused. I’ve been trying to work with them but communication is gone. I filed 3 complaints with the Oklahoma attorney general. Nothing…. How do I find an attorney to help me….

    • Maureen Heet

      I have notified my attorney and will hopefully know my options within a week. Feel free to contact me at the email I listed in an above comment.

  • Marc Grimaldi

    Very similar problems. Please let me know if a class action suit is in order.

    • Maureen Heet

      I listed my email in an above comment. Please feel free to contact me.

  • Joe in VA

    I have been with Tate since January 2016 and have experienced the same disappointments that multiple authors have voiced. I’m fed up with them and went to see a lawyer last week. He said I do have a case for breach of contract–Tate could care less. I think a class action suit is in order to get their attention, extract justice for the authors that have been wronged, and put them out of business if they won’t work to rectify the situation.

    • Maureen Heet

      Feel free to contact me at the email I’ve listed in an above comment.

  • Angry Oklahoman

    My book was just released through Tate and I was extremely unnerved to find that the listed complaints follow the details of my story almost verbatim. I would be glad to join in on any action against Tate for outright thievery.

    • Maureen Heet

      I listed my email in an above comment; please feel free to contact me.

  • Shaudonna Bryant

    My mother and I have have similar complaints let us know what plans are to be done

    • Maureen Heet

      I posted my email in an above comment, please contact me if you want more information.

  • Denise Hibach

    I have had the same issue as well! To the letter.

    • Unhappy Author

      I’ve had the same horrific issues with Tate if there’s a lawsuit please email me the information.

      • Maureen Heet

        Please, contact me at the email I listed in an above comment if you’d like to be notified what I hear from our attorney.

  • Pontus J Back

    I am in! I have had the exact same issues with Tate Publishing and I actually have much to say about them. I also have around two hours of recorded phone calls that are going to be released any day now to the media. It is time for all authors to take legal action against Ryan Tate and Richard Tate and Tate Publishing. I am not giving out anymore details right now but all I can say based on what I just read is that we are many out here that have been treated the same poor way and something has to happen.

    • Maureen Heet

      I posted my email in an above comment. Feel free to contact me there.

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