Appeal denied: suit against NYLS for false job stats

December 27, 2012 An appeal against the decision to dismiss a lawsuit over New York Law School graduate employment data has failed. The case was filed by plaintiffs’ lawyers Jesse Strauss and David Anziska, who alleged that the employment statistics published by the law school were misleading.

The case was dismissed in March by Judge Melvin Schweitzer in the New York Supreme Court, and the plaintiffs vowed to appeal the decision. The decision on appeal, written by Associate Justice Rolando T. Acosta of the Appellate Division, First Department, puts the case to rest.

The court did not, however, agree with the Supreme Court that college graduates are particularly sophisiticated consumers of this kind of information, recognising that students may be susceptible to misrepresentations by law schools.

Justice Acosta used the conclusion of his judgment to reiterate the ethical obligations borne by law schools for their current and prospective students:
“Given this reality, it is important to remember that the practice of law is a noble profession that takes pride in its high ethical standards. Indeed, in order to join and continue to enjoy the privilege of being an active member of the legal profession, every prospective and active member of the profession is called upon to demonstrate candor and honesty. This requirement is not a trivial one. For the profession to continue to ensure that its members remain candid and honest public servants, all segments of the profession must work in concert to instill the importance of those values. “In the last analysis, the law is what the lawyers are. And the law and the lawyers are what the law schools make them.” Defendant and its peers owe prospective students more than just barebones compliance with their legal obligations. Defendant and its peers are educational not-for-profit institutions. They should be dedicated to advancing the public welfare. In that vein, defendant and its peers have at least an ethical obligation of absolute candor to their prospective students.”

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