David Halperin”s Republic Report on “Mass Actions” in Student Enrollment Agreement Fine Print

David Halperin’s Republic Report on “Mass Action” Ban in Student Enrollment Agreement

A critical point in a new enrollment agreement described in detail by David Halperin at Republic Report states:

“Students must agree to give up the right to a jury trial. The agreement reads, “By my signature, I acknowledge that I understand that both I and The School are irrevocably waiving rights to a trial by jury.” An addendum reiterates, “IN THE EVENT THAT YOU ELECT TO BRING A CLAIM IN COURT, YOU AGREE TO WAIVE YOUR RIGHTS TO A JURY TRIAL AND THAT THE CLAIM SHALL BE SUBMITTED TO A JUDGE ONLY AND NOT TO A JURY.” Prohibiting students from presenting their claims to a jury takes away a major aspect of their right to sue in the first place.” 

A number of agreements are written so that students forfeit their right to go to court through forced arbitration provisions and to a jury trial.  This agreement, though it eliminated forced arbitration, still bans “class actions,” AND it also bans “mass actions,” as Halperin describes:

“To make matters worse, it turns out that there is not just a ban on class actions, but a ban on “mass actions,” meaning the student must “agree not to combine or consolidate any Claims with those of other students.” Meaning students have no ability to combine claims at all, even with one other student, a strategy that makes it much easier to find lawyers who will see enough money in a case to make it worthwhile to pursue.”

For the article see the Republic Report piece at Huffington Post here.