LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The U.S. Trustee’s Office today granted an ad-hoc student group’s request to form a special committee to represent the interests of students of the recently-collapsed Corinthian Colleges Inc. The honoring of the seldom-granted request is a victory for the estimated 500,000 students impacted by Corinthian’s collapse, giving them meaningful participation in the bankruptcy process, said attorneys from the Public Counsel Law Center, Robins Kaplan LLP, and Strumwasser & Woocher LLP, who represent the student group.
“Today’s decision gives the student body a recognized organized role in the proceedings,” said Mark Rosenbaum, Director of Public Counsel Opportunity Under Law. “Our expectation is that the collective bankruptcy proceedings will provide a forum to work out many of the issues with the colleges, the Department of Education, and other parties.”
“The doors are now open for all students who had their futures and finances harmed by these schools to make their grievances heard,” said Aeyla Admire, a former student at Corinthian Colleges subsidiary, Everest College, who was misled by Everest about her program’s accreditation and how her education would be financed.
The Committee will be able to put the important topics of student relief on the agenda for discussion and will ensure that a plan provides all student creditors both a voice and a vote.
“Today’s action is a very promising development, and we achieved an important first step toward giving each and every student a voice. We are grateful to the Office of the United States Trustee for acting quickly to address the needs of this critical constituency,” said Scott Gautier of Robins Kaplan LLP, bankruptcy counsel for the ad-hoc student group.
Students who have already been organizing together and advocating for themselves as a group over the past year will volunteer to serve on the Committee, and all former students will also have an opportunity to apply to serve on the committee through the Office of the United States Trustee, who has sole discretion to appoint Committee members.
“It is our understanding that the U.S. Trustee will be looking for a fair cross-section of student interests, as well as students that have proven their willingness to follow through on the obligation to represent students’ interests. We trust that the Committee will be appointed quickly, and we are already working on motions for immediate relief to protect the students’ interests in this case. We look forward to working with the Students’ Committee on these matters as soon as possible,” Gautier added.
Additional information and examples of Corinthian’s fraudulent and misleading actions can be viewed here.
About Public Counsel
Public Counsel is the nation’s largest pro bono law firm. Founded in 1970, Public Counsel strives to achieve three main goals: protect the legal rights of disadvantaged children; represent immigrants who have been the victims of torture, persecution, domestic violence, trafficking, and other crimes; and foster economic justice by providing individuals and institutions in underserved communities with access to quality legal representation. Through a pro bono model that leverages the talents and dedication of thousands of attorney and law student volunteers, along with an in-house staff of more than 75 attorneys and social workers, Public Counsel annually assists more than 30,000 families, children, immigrants veterans, and nonprofit organizations and addresses systemic poverty and civil rights issues through impact litigation and policy advocacy. For more information, visit www.publiccounsel.org.
About Robins Kaplan LLP
Robins Kaplan LLP is among the nation’s premier trial law firms, with more than 220 lawyers located in Atlanta, Bismarck, North Dakota, Boston, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Mountain View, California, New York, Naples, Florida, and Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The firm litigates, mediates, and arbitrates high-stakes, complex disputes, repeatedly earning national recognition. Firm clients include—as both plaintiffs and defendants—numerous Fortune 500 corporations, emerging-markets companies, entrepreneurs, and individuals.
About Strumwasser & Woocher LLP
Strumwasser & Woocher is one of the most respected law firms in California, known for its successful trial and appellate litigation of major public-policy and public-interest matters. Since its founding in 1991, the firm has litigated landmark cases regarding education law, election law, land use issues, state and local government law, taxation, environmental protection, constitutional law, civil rights, consumer protection, insurance regulation, health care law, public utility law, and workers' rights. In trial and appellate courts, legislative halls and administrative tribunals, Strumwasser & Woocher has collected a broad array of victories in path-making litigation and has advised clients on the day's most compelling issues.