Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Against NY Law School
April 09, 2012
New York Supreme Court Judge Melvin L. Schweitzer dismissed a lawsuit lodged by nine graduates of New York Law School who accused the latter of misleading them about their employment prospects after graduation, reports the New York Times. The judge ruled that the suit had no merit and the case was essentially one of caveat emptor.
The decision is a setback for several similar lawsuits filed across the country. For the second consecutive year the number of law school entrance examinees has sharply declined, reflecting a view that legal market is sluggish. Most graduates of top law schools continue to get jobs, but those from less prestigious law schools are having a tough time finding employment.
The evidence continues to mount that prospective students may want to think twice before taking out hefty loans to obtain that once-coveted law degree. Not only did the mean salary of 2010 law school graduates fall 10 percent since the year before, their overall median starting salaries at private practice firms dropped an "astonishing" 20 percent, according to National Association for Law Placement's (NALP) "Employment Report and Salary Survey for the Class of 2010."
Meanwhile, fewer new graduates are finding a job at all. While almost 88 percent of those surveyed said they had secured a paid position by graduation, just 68.4 percent of them required applicants to have passed the bar; that's down from 74.7 percent in 2008. And nearly 40 percent of the employed graduates settled for part-time or temporary work, NALP reports.
Law schools and public interest organizations may be picking up some of the slack, adding 900 new legal positions since 2008. But with roughly 41,000 graduates in 2010, that's small potatoes. Also, when law schools encourage placement of their new alumni in these positions, students complain it artificially boosts the schools' graduate employment rates.