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August 21, 2012 / Brandon Brouillette

Mountain State University Faced with Class Action Lawsuit after Losing General Accreditation Status

A class action lawsuit has been filed against  over the school’s loss of general accreditation. Mountain State University is a privately-owned school with campuses in West Virginia, Florida, North Carolina and Pennsylvania. The lawsuit claims that the MSU knew it would likely lose accreditation status, but hid those facts from current and prospective students. As a result, the class alleges that students “are saddled with considerable student loans” and any degrees the University provides are “effectively worthless.”

According to the U.S. Department of Education, “[t]he goal of accreditation is to ensure that education provided by institutions of higher education meets acceptable levels of quality.”  In revoking accreditation, the Higher Learning Commission stated in a notice that the school “has not conducted itself with the integrity expected of an accredited institution with regard to ensuring that its students have accurate and timely information about the status of their academic programs and consistent quality across all academic programs.” The school has appealed the commission’s decision and as a result, the school will keep its accreditation during the appeal, which could take 10 to 16 weeks.

As the number of for-profit schools continues to grow, so have the number of students who have brought class action lawsuits.  In addition to accreditation fraud, for-profit universities have widely been sued for fraud and deceptive practices, including cases involving financial aid fraud, and recruiting/ enrollment fraud. In August of 2010, the U.S. Government Accountability Office released an in-depth report of its investigation into the widespread fraud involving fifteen selected for-profit universities. The report is a must-read for those concerned about possible fraudulent practices at for-profit colleges.

If you feel you or someone you know may have been defrauded by a for-profit school, please contact the attorneys of Khorrami, LLP for a free confidential consultation about your legal options.

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