Potential Class Action Lawsuit Accuses Actors Access of Deceptive Practices

The lawsuit alleges Actors Access misleads customers with hidden fees.

By: Apr. 24, 2024
Potential Class Action Lawsuit Accuses Actors Access of Deceptive Practices
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Deadline reports that Clarkson Law, a public interest law firm, announced the filing of a class action lawsuit against Actors Access, a service owned by Breakdown Services, Ltd., for alleged deceptive business practices and exploitative pay-to-play models. This legal action, initiated on behalf of plaintiffs Kate Bond, Christian Jenkins, Robert Fisher, Amber Coyle, and Donald Smith, was lodged in the Los Angeles Superior Court on Wednesday.

"Following the daily outpour of support from actors, industry insiders, and the public after our filing against Casting Networks, we realized exactly how widespread this problem is throughout the online audition industry," said Ryan Clarkson, managing partner at Clarkson. "Actors Access, a massive Hollywood institution that even predates the internet, is guilty of the same deception — scamming actors and taking advantage of their career dreams. It is time they are held accountable."

Christina Le, a partner at Clarkson, further detailed the allegations, stating, "Similar to the deceptive bait and switch model used by Casting Networks, Actors Access’ fraud of choice is hidden fees, revealing myriad up-charges only after enticing actors to pay a smaller upfront cost. Both platforms leverage illegal fraud tactics to unlawfully line their pockets and chisel a financially vulnerable community of performers who are already providing their labor for free throughout the audition process."

The lawsuit seeks immediate injunctive relief requiring Actors Access to cease their alleged unfair business practices and aims to permanently protect actors from exploitation. Additionally, it seeks compensation for damages amounting to three times what actors overpaid for subscriptions, aligning with penalties stipulated by the California state labor code.

This legal challenge comes four months after SAG-AFTRA issued a warning to casting websites about the legality of collecting fees from actors for commercial casting submissions. The previous lawsuit filed by Clarkson Law targeted Casting Networks, alleging violations of the California Labor Code and unfair business practice laws due to a tiered subscription model that plaintiffs claimed was misleading.

Read the full lawsuit here.

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