Hidden Fees for School Plays & Community Events? NY Lawsuit Targets BookTix

BookTix class action lawsuit

Lawsuit Accuses BookTix Inc. of Hiding Fees for School & Community Events

A New York lawsuit accuses BookTix Inc., a popular ticketing platform for schools and community events, of deceptive practices. The lawsuit alleges BookTix hides processing fees until the final step of the online ticket purchase process, making tickets appear cheaper than they actually are.

Hidden fees on school play tickets

According to the BookTix lawsuit, New York resident Kelly Crisci encountered a surprise $1.50 fee when buying tickets for a local school production. The advertised price displayed only the ticket cost, but a hidden fee was added after seat selection. 

This practice, the lawsuit argues, violates New York's Arts and Cultural Affairs Law, which requires transparency in ticket pricing. She said faced with the choices to pay the fee and attend the performance, or miss the performance altogether and disappoint a young loved one, she paid the unexpected fee. 

BookTix targets schools and community events

BookTix primarily caters to schools, community theaters, dance studios, and fundraising events. These events often take place in small venues where BookTix may be the only ticketing option. 

Crisci argues BookTix leverages this position to unfairly burden families with surprise fees, especially those attending performances by loved ones. She wants to redress BookTix Inc.’s “illegal practice” of concealing processings fees, which violates New York laws. 

New York law protects consumers from surprise fees

In response to rising concerns about surprise fees in the live event ticketing industry, New York enacted changes to its Arts and Cultural Affairs Law in 2022. This law mandates transparency from ticket sellers and prohibits hidden fees on top of the advertised price.

The lawsuit alleges BookTix continues to violate this law by hiding fees that can be more than 15% of the advertised ticket price. This significantly increases the cost, especially for those seeking prime seats in small venues.

Other ticketing companies comply with NY law

The lawsuit against BookTix is part of a growing trend of consumer action against companies with deceptive ticketing practices. Similar lawsuits have been filed against platforms like StubHub, SportsEngine, and SofarSounds.

However, some companies are adapting to the new law. The lawsuit mentions Eventbrite and Ticketmaster as examples that now display the total ticket price, including all fees, at every stage of the checkout process.

Lawsuit seeks damages and injunctive relief

Crisci is suing BookTix Inc. on behalf of herself and all New Yorkers who have been charged hidden fees. She is seeking compensation for damages, attorneys' fees, and an injunction to prevent BookTix from continuing this practice.

Case Details:

  • Lawsuit: Crisci v BookTix Inc.
  • Case Number: 7:24-cv-03670
  • Court: U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York

Plaintiffs' Attorneys:

  • James R. Denlea, Jeffrey I. Carton, and Amber T. Wallace (Denlea & Carton LLP)



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