Nine former students who allege New York Law School inflated its postgraduate employment statistics to trick them into enrolling have asked the state Court of Appeals to review a decision by the Appellate Division, First Department, dismissing their suit. The plaintiff’s legal team—led by Jesse Strauss, Frank Raimond and David Anziska—argued in a motion for leave to appeal filed on Feb. 19 that the high court should weigh in on the case, given that several lower court judges have cited differing grounds for dismissing nearly identical cases. The dismissal also is out of sync with rulings in California that have been more favorable to similar fraud suits, they argued. "There is really no guidance right now for other litigants and for law schools," Strauss said. "It’s difficult for us to advise them on the law, and the schools need to know what they can and cannot do in terms of marketing in New York."
The New York Law School case was among the first of the 15 actions against law schools around the country. Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Melvin Schweitzer dismissed the suit last March—the first in a set of legal roadblocks the law school litigants have faced. The First Department affirmed the dismissal in Gomez-Jimenez v. New York Law School, 652226/11, on Dec. 20, while criticizing New York Law School for being "less than candid" about postgraduate job and salary data.
A trial judge dismissed a nearly identical case against Albany Law School in early January, and Strauss said he was preparing an appeal. The parties were still awaiting a decision on the motion to dismiss their case against Brooklyn Law School, which Supreme Court Justice David Schmidt heard last August. A motion to dismiss their case against the Hofstra University Maurice A. Deane School of Law was also pending.