Elon Musk’s Twitter Sued Again Over Unpaid Bills

Elon Musk’s Twitter is once again being hounded for allegedly not paying its bills, after fresh legal action was filed against the firm.

CNN reported that on Tuesday a group of small US companies filed a proposed class action lawsuit, alleging that Twitter failed to pay tens of thousands of dollars in overdue bills.

This is not the first time that Twitter, under the controversial ownership of Elon Musk, has faced accusations and legal actions for unpaid bills.

Image credit: Elon Musk

Unpaid bills

In February Wall Street corporate advisory firm Innisfree M&A became the latest organisation to sue Twitter over unpaid bills.

Innisfree M&A is seeking about $1.9 million (£1.6m) from Twitter, in what it alleges are unpaid bills for advisory services to the firm on its sale to Elon Musk last year.

Musk of course saddled Twitter with $13bn in debt as part of the acquisition deal, and the company must pay back those loans while also making large interest payments.

Musk for his part has launched a cost-cutting drive, laying off more than half of Twitter’s staff and also apparently stopping payments to some vendors and service providers.

In January in the UK, Crown Estate launched legal proceedings against Twitter over alleged unpaid rent on the company’s London headquarters.

Meanwhile the firm that owns Twitter’s San Francisco headquarters also sued the Elon Musk firm in January over what it claimed was more than $3m in rent payments.

Elon Musk has also put lots of Twitter office furniture, as well as fixtures and fittings from its headquarters up for online auction, as he seeks to drastically cut costs, amid a revenue crisis, as many companies have halted their advertising spend with the platform.

Musk’s Twitter is also being sued by a private jet company for unpaid bills for executive flights and an event production company has also alleged Twitter failed to pay it after cancelling the “Chirp Conference” it had been set to organise in November after Musk took over the company.

Amazon Web Services recently refused to pay Twitter for its ads, after Twitter failed to pay a contractual bill.

Musk’s Twitter is said to be $70m behind on AWS payments.

Fresh lawsuit

Now according to CNN, Elon Musk’s Twitter is being sued by four firms – captioning services company White Coat Captioning; consulting group YES Consulting; and public relations firms Cancomm and Dialogue México.

They allege that Twitter is in breach of their contracts and has yet to pay bills ranging from around $40,000 to $140,000 for services they provided the company last year.

Tuesday’s lawsuit, which was filed in California Northern District Court, refers to the companies suing Twitter as “small businesses without the resources, time, and money to litigate these claims on their own.”

The latest lawsuit was filed by Shannon Liss-Riordan, who has also filed four proposed class action lawsuits and hundreds of arbitration demands on behalf of Twitter employees laid off following Musk’s takeover, in pursuit of additional severance they allege they were promised by the company prior to Musk’s takeover.

Some former workers have also alleged sex and disability discrimination and other issues, which the company has argued in court are without merit.

Twitter has moved to dismiss many of the lawsuits in court, CNN reported.

Twitter, which fired much of its media relations team last Autumn, did not immediately respond to a request for comment about the new lawsuit, CNN noted.

“Elon Musk told Twitter vendors that, if they want to get paid, then sue,” Liss-Riordan told CNN in a statement, referring to comments reportedly made by the Twitter owner.

“Well, he’s now getting his wish. Businesses, like employees, should not have to sue to get paid what they are owed.”

Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

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