Tate Publishing & Enterprises LLC promoted itself as a family-owned, Christian book and music publisher. It denied that it was a vanity publisher, but complaints piled up from authors who said they had not received services promised in exchange for various fees.
The company moved much of their operation from Oklahoma to the Philippines but there were found to be in violation of local labor laws and failure to pay employees. They announced they'd be moving back to America because Donald Trump's election improved the business climate.
I posted warnings about Tate Publishing several times, to their annoyance. They threatened legal action against me but I hadn't done anything other than state the facts. (In 2012, Tate CEO Ryan Tate was recorded threatening to sue staff members and file liens against their houses if they shared information about the company.)
They also offered to pay for me to fly to Oklahoma so I could see their headquarters.
Tate effectively went out of business at the start of 2017, amid multiple lawsuits.
One was for $1.8 million, by Lightning Source, printing and distribution company. They were awarded a default judgment in excess of $2 million.
In March, Xerox Corp. was awarded $1.4 million from Tate Publishing and Enterprises and $450,433.66 from Ryan Tate, and another $15,433.66 in costs. Tate's attorneys did not attend the hearing because they had quit because they hadn't been paid.
HUNDREDS OF AUTHORS LEFT HIGH AND DRY (AND POORER)
According to NewsOK: "Writers and musicians who were under contract with Tate as late as in 2016 continue to share stories about money they paid to Tate Publishing to produce their works.
One writer, Heather D. Nelson, is publishing a series of stories she has written that are based on interviews she has done with other Tate clients. She is publishing those stories on her site.
Hundreds of complaints had been filed against Tate Publishing by authors under contract."
RYAN AND RICHARD TATE ARRESTED!
Mediaite.com reports: "Ryan Tate, an Oklahoma business owner who appeared multiple times on Fox News and Fox Business Network, was arrested on Thursday, along with his father, Richard Tate. The two men are suspected of felony embezzlement, attempted felony extortion by threat, and felony racketeering.
An agent for the Oklahoma attorney general’s Consumer Protection Unit revealed in a probable cause affidavit that the office had been “investigating consumer complaints made against Tate Publishing and Enterprises and an associated firm, Tate Music Group, since June 2015.”
According to the report from The Oklahoman, “there now have been more than 800 complaints” against the Tates’ enterprises filed with the Consumer Protection Unit.
The newspaper also disclosed that both Tates “each face four felony embezzlement charges, a misdemeanor embezzlement charge, and three felony attempted extortion by threat charges.” They added that “each man also faces a felony racketeering charge, and authorities said they also intend to try to get restitution from the men to compensate victimized customers.”
WHERE THE MONEY WENT
More details from Ken Miller, Associated Press: "Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter said the artists contracted with 70-year-old Richard Tate and 38-year-old Ryan Tate to publish their work, but that the father and son transferred the money from sales of books and music to the their own personal checking accounts."
IF YOU HAVE BEEN CHEATED BY TATE
If you feel that you were victimized by Tate, contact the Oklahoma Attorney General, Mike Hunter. The instructions for how to file a complaint are here:
I'm very sorry to say that I think the chances that authors will get their money back are extremely slim. I would be surprised if the company or the family have any assets that can be found. However, if only to help the legal case against the Tates, do contact the Attorney General's office and let them know the details of what you paid, what you were promised, and what you actually got.