A group of authors who are considering whether to opt out of a settlement with Google Inc that gives it the right to distribute books online were granted a delay by a federal judge on Tuesday.

U.S. District Judge Denny Chin granted a four-month extension for a group of authors deciding whether they want to opt out or object to the settlement between Google and the Authors Guild and the Association of American Publishers.

Under the proposed settlement agreed upon last October, Google will pay $125 million to create a Book Rights Registry, where authors and publishers can register works and receive compensation from institutional subscriptions or book sales.

But a separate group of academic authors had petitioned for a delay on whether they should participate in the settlement that paves the way for readers to search through millions of copyrighted books online, browse passages and purchase copies.

This extension gives class members more time to consider their options under the Google book settlement, said Joanne Zack, one of the lawyers for the authors guild.

A Google spokesperson did not immediately comment.

The judge set a final settlement hearing of October 7 for court approval. If approved it would bring to a close an almost four-year long legal challenge of Google's plan to make many of the world's great books searchable online.

(Reporting by Christine Kearney; Editing by Richard Chang)