May 23, 2023
The Authors Guild continues to stand in solidarity with the Writers Guild of America (WGA) members who have been on strike since May 2, 2023, to demand fair working terms for writers in the TV and film industry. Due to the strike, producers, streaming platforms, studios, and others who hold options to books have begun exercising force majeure clauses in their option agreements to pause the option term pending resolution of the strike. Force majeure clauses are standard in option agreements and cover strikes in addition to other unforeseen conditions such as floods, shortages, wars, etc.
They give the party invoking the clause extra time to fulfill their obligations or exercise their rights during the period of the force majeure. In the context of the WGA’s strike, producers who hold options on books can invoke the strike as a force majeure to stop the option clock from the day the strike was announced until the strike is over (unless there is a limit to the force majeure, e.g. six months).
Authors are quite literally being put on hold when force majeure clauses are invoked and can suffer delayed payment and loss of other opportunities as a result. While we continue to support the WGA in their strike, we are here to support affected authors with legal advice on this or other issues.
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note that we can only provide legal advice to members, but you can join today for only $135/year.
Authors Guild Statement of Solidarity with the Writers Guild of America
May 3, 2023
AG Statement on Tentative Agreement Between HarperCollins and Union
February 10, 2023
Authors Guild Wins Key Concessions in Settlement with Authors’ Place Press
February 3, 2023