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Judge Dismisses Alumni Lawsuits Against Two Chicago Law Schools

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Judge Dismisses Alumni Lawsuits Against Two Chicago Law Schools

Nov 12, 2012, 04:02 pm CDT

A judge has dismissed class-action lawsuits against two Chicago law schools by graduates who alleged that they were tricked into attending by the schools' misleading post-graduation job prospects.

Cook County, Ill., Circuit Judge Mary Mikva, in a pair of rulings Friday, threw out the alumni suits against John Marshall Law School and Chicago-Kent College of Law, the Chicago Tribune and the National Law Journal report.

Mikva dismissed the suits with prejudice, meaning that the claims cannot be refiled.

The two cases were among the more than a dozen suits filed that accuse law schools of luring prospective students into attending by publishing misleading job statistics.

The courts have now dismissed five of those cases, including one against DePaul University College of Law, one against Thomas M. Cooley Law School, and one against New York Law School,

The schools maintain that the employment data they published complies with the requirements of the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar and the National Association for Law Placement.

John Marshall Dean John Corkery, in a prepared statement, said the judge's ruling vindicates the school's position that its reporting of post-graduate employment statistics did not violate the rights of any of its students. "John Marshall will continue its proud tradition of providing a quality education for its students and of preparing them to succeed in their careers and in life."

Jeanne Hartig, vice president for communications at Chicago-Kent, told the National Law Journal the school was "grateful" and "gratified" by the judge's ruling. "We maintained from the beginning that the case did not have merit, and we are delighted that the judge agreed," she said.

Chicago lawyer Ed Clinton, who represented the John Marshall graduates, could not be reached for comment. But Jesse Strauss, one of three attorneys coordinating the national litigation, said the team plans to appeal. The dismissal of the law suit against New York Law School has already been appealed, the National Law Journal reported.

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