Looking into Legal Education
These lawsuits should be a slam-dunk in favor of the plaintiffs, and here’s why. The general principle that fuels truth-in-advertising is that no guarantees are made, but there is honesty about the contents or the prospects for use of the good or service.
Campbell’s soup cannot claim that its soups “cure” Cancer. However, it can fairly claim that its tomato soup may be helpful in reducing the risk of Prostate Cancer because studies show that diets high in tomatoes are closely correlated with reduced Prostate Cancer rates. If a regular consumer of Campbell’s tomato soup ultimately gets Prostate Cancer, everyone knows that the consumer has no claim for fruad because there’s no implication that other factors are irrelevant.
Law schools cannot guarantee employment, but they have an obligation to report honest statistics that allow prospective law students to assess their chances of securing various types of employment upon graduation.
By advertising 90%+ employment rates, the law schools are essentially selling guarantees of employment – regardless of other factors that impact employability post law school graduation: grades, honors, in-school clinical experience, journal experience, first-time bar passage, prior work/community service experience, interviewing skills, culture, geography, company/firm needs, age, ethnicity, gender, sexual-orientation, letters of recommendation, etc.
The guarantees or virtual guarantees sold on students by the law schools get them into trouble. They continue to advertize 90%+ employment rates that they know misleads students. If they are unaware that their stats are misleading, they would openly disclose where exactly their graduates are working, reporting with no shame the “few” who work as baristas at Starbucks, wait tables or work in jobs they could have secured even without law degrees.
The schools are lying, and they are doing so with the willful intent of fraudulently inducing students to attend their schools and incur massive debt loads in the process.
NY State Supreme dismissed suit against NYLS. Apparently that law school does cook its numbers. Still haven’t weighed in on that decision? Chicken? Whipped? Gag order from your handlers?
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