Various law schools across the country – including the John Marshall Law School in Chicago and the Maurice A. Deane School of Law at Hofstra University – are being sued by a group of former students who allege that they misrepresented employment data.
About 15 law schools nationwide have been sued by more than 73 law school graduates over allegations that the schools falsely inflated graduate employment rates and salary statistics to recruit and retain students, writes Sophia Pearson and Phil Milford at Bloomberg.
Many believe that they are leaving the colleges with nothing but debt and scant employment prospects.
In a statement, David Anziska, an attorney for the plaintiffs, said:
"We believe that some in the legal academy have done a disservice to the profession and the nation by saddling tens of thousands of young lawyers with massive debt for a degree worth far less than advertised."
This comes after the news that a full credit loan has passed $8,000 per year, with total outstanding student loan debt passing the $1 trillion mark, more than Americans owe in credit card debt.
Last year, the American Bar Association adopted two resolutions asking for more assistance for student loans and urging schools to provide more detailed employment data.
Many schools say that they are sticking to employment data guidelines set by the American Bar Association and the National Association for Law Placement.
Connie Mayer, Albany Law School's interim president and dean, said:
"We have documentation that supports the accuracy of our data.
"Students are well aware of the realities of today's economy and we believe the information we provide during the admission process does not mislead our applicants."
The DePaul University law school in Chicago has been accused of engaging in "Enron- style" accounting techniques to manipulate its employment statistics, at the Cook County Circuit Court.
The plaintiffs say this is:
"Far from giving their graduates âa competitive edge,' and placing them in good, secure, well-paying jobs."
The university is being sued by eight former students.
"DePaul consigns the majority of them to years of indentured servitude, saddling them with tens of thousands of dollars in crushing, non-dischargeable debt that will literally take decades to pay off."
Similar allegations were lodged against law schools across the country, including the Brooklyn Law School (78472MF) and Albany Law School of Union University in New York and the DePaul University law school and the Chicago-Kent College of Law at the Illinois Institute of Technology. Similar cases have been brought in California, Florida and New Jersey.