The opinion of the court was delivered by: The Honorable David O. Carter, Judge
Julie Barrera Not Present Courtroom Clerk Court Reporter
ATTORNEYS PRESENT FOR PLAINTIFF: ATTORNEYS PRESENT FOR DEFENDANTS: NONE PRESENT NONE PRESENT
PROCEEDING (IN CHAMBERS): ORDER GRANTING MOTION TO CONSOLIDATE AND TO APPOINT CO-LEAD COUNSEL
Before the Court is Plaintiff Kevin Ferguson ("Plaintiff")'s Motion to Consolidate Related Cases and to Appoint Co-Lead Counsel ("Motion to Consolidate") (Docket 22). The Court finds this matter appropriate for decision without oral argument. Fed. R. Civ. P. 78; Local Rule 7-15. After considering the moving, opposing and replying papers, the Court GRANTS Plaintiff's Motion to
Plaintiff Kevin Ferguson brings this action on behalf of himself and two classes consisting of persons who enrolled in and/or attended class at one of Defendant Corinthian's academic institutions. Complaint ¶ 1. The "Everest Class" consists of those who attended Everest College, Everest Instituted, Everest University, Everest University Online, or Everest College of Business Technology and Healthcare (collectively, "Everest") from January 24, 2005 to present, and the "Heald Class" consists of those who attended Heald College, LLC ("Heald") from January 24, 2009 to present.
MINUTES FORM 11 DOC Initials of Deputy Clerk: jcb
On August 4, 2010, the United States Government Accountability Office ("GAO") issued a report regarding the deceptive and fraudulent practices used by Corinthian, and other for-profit colleges, to recruit students. Id. at ¶ 2. According to the report, Corinthian induced students to attend its institutions and to apply for federal loans, knowing full-well that the students would be ill-equipped
Id. The GOA's undercover investigation allegedly revealed that Corinthian misrepresented its graduation rate, its post-graduation employment rate, and the cost and length of the
Id. Corinthian allegedly engaged in this conduct in order to "maximize its profits at the expense of students' education and post-employment prospects." Id.
Plaintiff alleges that students enroll in Corinthian institutions believing that they are receiving "a quality education at an affordable price," when, in fact, they pay "some of the highest tuition rates in the country" and graduate with a degree that "never qualifies nor prepares them for any job placement other than low-wage, low-skill employment." Id. at ¶ 3. Plaintiff further alleges that Corinthian's misrepresentations result in irreparable harm to students of Everest and Heald "because federal-subsidized loans are not dischargeable in bankruptcy." Id. at ¶ 4.
The Department of Education and Higher Learning Commission ("HLC") have also recently uncovered Corinthian's alleged wrongdoing, issuing ...