FTC’s investigation uncovered that students had been lured by false job placement claims
The Federal Trade Commission announced today that its years-long investigation into DeVry University continues to benefit consumers, as the U.S. Department of Education will forgive $71.7 million in federal student loans for students deceived by the for-profit university, based in part on the FTC’s prior action.
“Students deceived by DeVry should not be drowning in debt, and I’m pleased to see the Department of Education taking action to right this injustice,” said Samuel Levine, Director of FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “It also sends a strong message to for-profit schools that luring students with fraudulent claims will not be tolerated. The FTC looks forward to continuing its coordination efforts and partnership with the Department of Education.”
According to the 2016 FTC complaint, DeVry deceptively advertised that 90 percent of its graduates seeking employment landed jobs in their field within six months of graduation. The FTC also alleged that DeVry misrepresented that its graduates had 15 percent higher incomes one year after graduation on average than the graduates of all other colleges or universities.
Today’s announcement by the U.S. Department of Education builds on the FTC’s prior federal court order against DeVry. Under that order, the school paid $49.4 million to the FTC for partial refunds to some students and $50.6 million in relief from debt owed to DeVry. In 2017, the agency mailed 173,000 refund checks totaling more than $49 million to students in compensation for DeVry’s allegedly misleading ads. Because money remained in the fund, in 2019, the FTC mailed an additional 128,875 checks totaling more than $9.4 million to people who cashed their first check.
Consumers interested in submitting a claim for loan forgiveness, should visit the Department of Education’s Borrow Defense Loan Discharge informational page.
The Federal Trade Commission works to promote competition, stop deceptive and unfair business practices and scams, and educate consumers. Report fraud, scams, or bad business practices at ReportFraud.ftc.gov. Get consumer advice at consumer.ftc.gov. Also, follow the FTC on social media, subscribe to press releases, and read the FTC’s blogs.