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Industry Insider – Can’t Pay; Won’t Pay

4 July @ 10:00 - 11:30 BST

Virtual Event Virtual Event

Chaired by SoA Chief Executive Nicola Solomon, this session will see Contracts Advisor Kate Pool (SoA) and Samuel O’Toole (Briffa) discuss what you should do if you haven’t received agreed payment for your work.  It will include practical tips on drafting contracts to encourage payment and protect your intellectual property, sending invoices, chasing payment, tracing assets and the final resort of how to take legal action.

It will explore the different routes available if a company is refusing to pay, perhaps claiming breach or imposing administrative barriers and the legal and practical ramifications if the company or individual is insolvent: winding up, how to respond if a receiver is appointed, or a company goes into liquidation.



  • Welcome, introductions and housekeeping from Nicola Solomon – Chief Executive, SoA (3 mins)
  • Discussion chaired by Nicola Solomon; with Kate Pool (SoA) and Samuel O’Toole (Briffa) (60 mins)
  • Comfort break (5 mins)
  • Q&A with audience (20 mins)
  • Summary and closing comments (2 mins)
  • This event will be moderated by Sarah Burton – Head of Advisory team and Senior Publishing Contracts Advisor, SoA


What will this session cover? 

This session will cover:

  • The practical steps on how to chase payments
  • What checks to carry out?
  • What notices to send
  • Protection and reversion of rights
  • Legal action
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution


Who is this session for? 

Anyone from emerging writer to the most experienced who wants to protect their position and encourage payment.


Send us your questions in advance 

If you would like to send questions in advance, email [email protected] with ‘Can’t Pay; Won’t Pay’ in the subject header. We will prioritise questions sent in advance and answer as many as we can from the audience on the day.


SoA @ Home fundraising bookshop

Browse our virtual Bookshop.org store featuring books by authors and speakers taking part in the SoA @ Home Festival. When you make a purchase using our affiliate links, a percentage will go to the Authors’ Contingency Fund, providing hardship grants to authors in financial difficulty.


The Line-up 

Nicola Solomon – Chief Executive, SoA

Nicola’s role encompasses protecting authors’ interests in negotiations/disputes with publishers and agents, advising individual authors and campaigning for authors’ rights, as well as for the wider cultural environment. Nicola is an expert in the publishing industry and the associated law, from copyright and defamation, to privacy, data protection and contract.

She is a Deputy District Judge and sits on the board of the International Authors’ Forum and the British Copyright Council and the European Writers Council.


Kate Pool – Consultant Publishing Contracts Advisor, SoA

Kate is one of the Consultant Publishing Contracts Advisors at The Society of Authors. She advises members on publishing contracts and issues and was the previous manager of The Author, the society’s quarterly member magazine.


Samuel O’Toole – Briffa

Sam O’Toole is a solicitor at Briffa where he advises creative businesses of all shapes and sizes in relation to the exploitation and enforcement of their intellectual property rights. Sam has a wealth of court experience and has acted for both sides in infringement, contract and debt recovery matters.

Twitter: @briffalegal | Instagram: @briffalegal | LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/briffa/ | Website: https://www.briffa.com/


Need to know 


  • Attendees will have the option to turn on the live transcript option
  • If you require BSL interpretation for this event, please email [email protected]

Before the event

  • Once registered, you will be sent a confirmation email with the Zoom link
  • If the confirmation email doesn’t arrive in your inbox, please check your junk /spam email folder.
  • Please add [email protected] to your Safe Senders list so you receive our confirmation, and reminder emails

During the event

  • This online event will take place on Zoom Webinar; you will not be visible on screen but will be able ask questions via the Q&A function or interact via the chat box
  • This event will be recorded but you won’t be on screen
  • This event is 60 minutes.

After the event

  • Hashtag for this event: #SoAatHome
  • You’ll be able to catch the recording on our Vimeo channel



Book your place using the registration form below.

All #SoAatHome events are free but if you can afford to, please consider donating to our Authors’ Contingency Fund and we suggest a minimum donation of £5. The fund is to help professional authors experiencing financial hardship. DONATE HERE

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Financial support for authors in need through the health crisis and beyond

Since March 2020, the Authors’ Contingency Fund has distributed over £1 million in small grants to authors facing financial hardship due to COVID-19.

With at least 57% of authors facing financial losses during the pandemic, we have helped people struggling financially due to contractual, employment and event cancellations, others who have lost income due to illness, and others prevented from working because of caring responsibilities.

As the health crisis continues, applications for grants continue to come in, and our emergency funds are running low.

So, if you are in a position to help, please donate via the link below. If you are an author facing financial hardship, please click here to see if we can help.



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20% off your first year with discount code SOAFESTIVAL20

The Society of Authors is the UK’s biggest trade union for authors – representing more than 11,300 writers, illustrators, translators and other creative practitioners.

Our standard subscription rate is just £26.25 per quarter (£18.50 for students).

As an SoA member, you’ll get:

  • Access to all our SoA @ Home Festival events for free
  • Unlimited one-to-one professional advice
  • Membership of our online and real-world professional networks
  • A range of member-only discounts, including books, insurance and travel
  • And much more.




We'll send you the Zoom joining details by email.

Please email [email protected] if you do not receive your confirmation.

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4 July
10:00 - 11:30 BST
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Sophia A Jackson