Not only do they want their tuition back, but graduates suing their law schools want the institutions to own up to their alleged lies.
David Anziska is an attorney representing about 100 clients embroiled in 14 lawsuits against their law schools, claiming their schools inflated post-graduation employment statistics.
“They feel law schools need to be held accountable,” Anziska told Business Insider.
Back in February, dozens of recent law-school graduates filed proposed class actions against their schools, claiming the institutions misled them about job prospects, Reuters reported at the time.
Those suits, several of which Anziska filed, claimed schools fudged employment statistics by giving their own grads temporary jobs and not revealing how many grads actually had jobs in the legal profession.
The suits come as law schools have been beefing up their tuition despite a sharp drop in applications, according to the National Law Journal. Law school graduates and even professors have attacked law school as a hugely expensive investments with few returns.
Law school is a “really big business,” Anziska told Business Insider, adding that it needs to be treated as such. “It’s a total cash cow.”
Three cases Anziska filed in Chicago have all been dismissed. In July, a judge also dismissed a suit against the Thomas M. Cooley Law School in Michigan.
The judge ruled Cooley’s graduates shouldn’t have relied on employment statistics alone when choosing a law school, Above The Law reported at the time.
While he admits he’s “had a mixed record” securing favourable verdicts for his clients, Anziska said he’s appealing at least three of the dismissals and won’t stop until his clients get what they want.
And what do they want exactly, if their law schools can’t guarantee them jobs? For starters, they’d like some of their money back, according to Anziska.
“Law schools are going to have to pay out a partial tuition reimbursement,” Anziska said, revealing what would happen if he wins his cases.
Still, even if he doesn’t win monetary damages for his clients, Anziska said he’ll push for change all the same.
He hopes these cases will force both the government and the law schools themselves to realise they’ve been lying to students and can’t continue to operate the way they currently are.
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