Grads Sue New York Law School,
claiming 'systemic, ongoing fraud'
August 10, 2011
The New York Post
Now the students have become the litigators.
Graduates of New York Law School filed a class action lawsuit against their alma mater, claiming they were duped into enrolling with false promises of practically guaranteed high-paying legal jobs.
In papers filed today in Manhattan Supreme Court, Alexandra Gomez-Jimenez, Scott Tiedke and Katherine Cooper say they were victims of a "systemic, ongoing fraud that is ubiquitous in the legal education industry and threatens to leave a generation of law students in dire financial straits."
The suit says the school duped students by claiming that "the overwhelming majority of its students — 90-95 percent — secure employment within nine months of graduation."
The "reality of the situation," the suit says, is "that these seemingly robust numbers include any type of employment, including jobs that have absoloutely nothing to do with the legal industry, do not requre a JD degree or are temporary or part-time in nature."
"Rather, if NYLS was to disclose the more pertinent employment statistic" of graduates who landed full-time law-related jobs, "the numbers would drop dramatically, and could be well below 50 percent, if not lower."
Lawyer David Anziska, who’s representing the now-employed grads, said the school has also inflated reports about the salaries its graduates pull in by using an average "based on a small, mostly self-selected subset of graduates who actually submit their salary information."
That means the bulk of graduates have a hard time digging out from their students loans to attend the almost $50,000 a year school, Anziska said. The suit says most graduates leave owing over $100,000 from the loans.
The suit seeks a court order changing the way the school reports the employment and salary numbers, as well as unspecified money damages.
The school’s dean, Richard Matasar, said, "These claims are without merit and we will vigorously defend against them in court."