by: Mark Barber Updated:
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - The Charlotte School of Law is closing effective immediately, according to an email the alumni association sent out to former students.
An email obtained by Channel 9 from Lee Robertson, the president of the Charlotte School of Law Alumni Association, said he received a call Monday from Interim Dean Paul Meggett about the school’s future.
During the call, Meggett said that the American Bar Association denied the law school’s Teach-Out Plan and that the North Carolina Board of Governors declined to grant an extension of the law school’s license to operate, according to Robertson.
Robertson said the students would be informed Tuesday of the development.
The Charlotte School of Law has been through a number of issues since November. It was placed on probation and lost federal student aid.
Channel 9's past coverage of Charlotte School of Law troubles:
- American Bar Association places Charlotte School of Law on probation
- Charlotte School of Law loses federal student aid
- Charlotte School of Law funding troubles leave students in limbo
- Recent bar exam scores lowest in history at Charlotte School of Law
- NC attorney general investigates Charlotte School of Law
- Charlotte School of Law receiving federal aid again
- Charlotte School of Law can't admit new students until further notice
“I am deeply saddened and profoundly frustrated by this news. I was very hopeful that our law school would be able to regain the confidence of the ABA, the BOG, its students and its alumni,” Robertson said in the letter.
For current students, it appears their only option is to transfer to a different institution, and since most law schools resume classes in the next two weeks, it’s unlikely that any Charlotte School of Law student will have the opportunity to transfer this semester, Robertson said.
Talece Hunter is one of those students is now left scrambling to figure out her next move.
"Currently I have $78,000 in loans with no degree to show for it," Hunter said.
Hunter is going to sell her house in Charlotte so she can find another law school. But even if she gets accepted, all of her credits from Charlotte School of Law may not transfer.
"It's possible I could be sent back one to two semesters," Hunter said.
Channel 9 checked the Charlotte School of Law’s website and saw it has been taken down, but so far the school hasn't said anything. Eyewitness News reporter Mark Barber called the school's offices but hadn't heard back.
"They were lied to and manipulated, and they gave money to an entity that pocketed it and gave them nothing in return," said Sidney Fligel, who represents James Scott Farrin, the law firm suing the school on behalf of its students.
The group is suing the Charlotte School of Law as well as its owners, the InfiLaw system and Sterling Capital Partners.
"It's unheard of for an institution of higher education to do something of this extent and walk away like nothing ever happened," Hunter said.
Fligel said students will need the federal government to forgive their student loans before they can keep pursuing their degrees.
It may take another year for the Department of Education to finalize the process where it forgives student loans. If the government does, attorneys believe the Charlotte School of Law will be on the hook to pay them all back.
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