Thursday, December 10, 2009

Three Law Schools Owned by One Company



Thank you to commenter Qazu, for this information. Phoenix Law School, Charlotte Law School, and Florida Coastal College of Law are owned by the same damn company!!


The InfiLaw System is a consortium of independent, community based law schools that is establishing itself as a leader in making legal education more responsive to the realities of new career dynamics.

The InfiLaw System includes Florida Coastal School of Law in Jacksonville, FL, Phoenix School of Law in Phoenix, AZ and its newest school, Charlotte School of Law in Charlotte, NC which opened in 2006.

Its mission is to establish student-centered, ABA accredited law schools in underserved markets that graduate students with the skills of a second-year associate and achieve true diversity programs aimed at student academic and career success.

In addition, InfiLaw provides an ongoing commitment to encouraging innovation, facilitating law school quality, fostering a humility-based culture, continuously improving the academic profile and outcomes of each school and securing funding for new campuses.

The fact that the ABA allows such a “consortium” to teach law shows that the ABA does not give a damn about prospective law students. You can also see that the consortium is planning to build new campuses.

Well, the "consortium" is actually a corporation, which is supposedly based out of Naples, Florida. It looks like Sterling Partners has invested in Infilaw Corp. Through Sterling’s website, you can also check out the bio of Infilaw CEO, Rick Inatome.

http://www.sterlingpartners.us/portfolio/index.asp?d_Company_ID=315


Look at the amounts charged by these respective schools.

http://www.phoenixlaw.edu/admissions/default.asp?PageID=16

Tuition $32,296 per year.

http://www.charlottelaw.edu/admissions/default.asp?PageID=16

Tuition and fees for FT student $33,242

http://www.fcsl.edu/finance/tuition-and-fee-schedule-20092010-academic-year

Tuition and fees per year for FT student - $32,662

Now, let’s take a look at the supposed job prospects for these students and graduates.

http://www.phoenixlaw.edu/about/default.asp?PageID=75

The position of dean is currently open. The school is taking applications for this illustrious position. The school does not currently mention employment figures for its graduates, on its web site.

http://www.charlottelaw.edu/careerservices/

As our career services takes form we will:

· Offer comprehensive resources to both students and employers that will serve as a platform for connecting with one another.
· Counsel students on new and exciting ways to use a law degree in our evolving culture with non-practice based opportunities.
· Continue to deepen and strengthen our already strong ties within the local and national legal communities to best assist our students with nurturing their own professional relationships.

Wow! I am sure this is a real comfort to current students. Let me guess. They also have 24-7 access to Simplicity too, right?! At least they don’t claim “99 percent employed within 9 months of graduation.”

http://www.fcsl.edu/aboutus

Florida Coastal claims a “Graduate employment rate after nine months was 96.6 percent in February 2008.”

Yeah, sure, and I can strike Derek Jeter out on three pitches. Do you have some actual proof to back up this claim? (I just want to make sure this is not some “error” or oversight on the part of the school.)

For $ome rea$on, the ABA feels that we need more law schools. Hmmm…I wonder why this would be the case. Never mind that the NALP reports that 198 ABA-approved law schools approve FAR MORE graduates than there are available attorney or (law-related) jobs. Apparently, we need more law schools! I suppose there are not enough JDs and “licensed attorneys” stocking shelves, selling insurance, teaching middle school, or waiting tables. The ABA feels that we need more of these types of graduates.

These three schools are regular advertisers on law school industry publications and mainstream newspapers. Each school has its own dean, and regional board of advisors. So, to the common eye everything appears fine. This company is blatantly out to make a serious buck. I am sure the ABA was aware of this, when it provisionally approved the schools. And Florida Coastal has already attained full accreditation from the ABA.

39 comments:

  1. I got admitted into FC School of Law and I considered it. For the opportunity to study torts on the beach or catch a Jaguars game, who would want to pass that up? I ultimately chose to go to law school in the tundra of Minnesota, but there were other considerations I won't address here. I found it sketchy that my entire law school application was on a postcard, and I got admitted in no time with a $3000 scholarship offer. Tuition wasn't $32k at the time, but I think that scholarship offer was a marketing ploy, since they were planning to make money off the discounted tuition rate anyway.

    So yeah, enjoy a vacation in Jacksonville, but don't use law school as an excuse to live there.

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  2. I got a letter from the dean at Charlotte Law telling me how wonderful the school was, and offering me a partial (or full?) scholarship to attend there. In that same envelope, I received a post-card. I was to enter my info, send it in, and then be admitted.

    If this is not a diploma mill, I don't know what is.

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  3. I, too, received such an offer from some unaccredited law school. I had already registered with LSAC and had sent out all my materials. If I remember, the school offered me money as well. ANd, yes, it was on a freaking post card.

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  4. I gotta say, this is the best of law school/law industry hating websites around.

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  5. What are you guys pissed about? This is capoitalism in action, baby! ANd if someone like that CEO is smart enough to take advantage of the market forces, than I say "good for him"!

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  6. FYI: Look at the ppl on Infilaw's national policy board. Who do I see here?
    Could it be Dennis Archer?

    Name not ringing a bell?

    Hmm, he was past ABA President.

    LOL - the ABA is in bed with Infilaw. They don't care. =)

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  7. Nando,
    Phoenix has posted their employment stats:
    Hmm, well I can't post the link but under their "Career Services" tab there is link to a pdf touting 94% employed after 9 months with 56% going into private firms. They also list an average salary of 63k for private practice - this number sounds shockingly realistic instead of the 100k most law schools toss out.

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  8. Coastal also has employment stats (haha, in the exact same spreadsheet style as Phoenix!)

    http://www.fcsl.edu/sites/fcsl.edu/files/2008%20ERSS%20Charts.pdf

    Numbers look realistic. . .

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  9. Thank you for the links on the employment stats for both schools. I guess I just wasn’t able to find them. Phoenix claiming 94% employment is laughable. They MUST be counting bartending and waiting tables as “employed.”

    Now, to address Anonymous, who posted at 8:49. We are upset because people masquerading as educators are making HUGE sums of money off of young people who are following the national mantra, i.e. “Education is the key to your future.”

    At least the executives at Infilaw Corp. are bold in their thievery. They don’t pretend to be providing legal education for the sake of “training the next generation of lawyers.” I am actually more disgusted by university presidents making millions of dollars per year. The Boston Globe and Lawyers Against the Law School Scam report on the president of Suffolk University, in Boston, making $2.8 million per year. That is what I am pissed about!

    http://www.boston.com/news/local/breaking_news/2009/12/suffolk_preside.html

    Lastly, if you end up selling vacuums after law school, I will not feel sorry for you. At least you will have helped your law school’s dean make $250K plus, annually. And you, of all people, should feel good about that!

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  10. Law school is a business. Period. It should surprise no one, then, that the businesses owning the schools have multiple branches and subsidiaries. Now if we could just take the next step and do away with the "scholarly" sham altogether, because all that "scholarship" produces effectively nothing of use to the actual practice of law.

    The problem is that the law school industry is wholly unregulated. It operates like the boilerroom securities shops in the 1920s. So long as that continues, all this fraud will continue.

    Thanks for the comment over on my blog. I finally got around to responding to it.

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  11. All I can say is that one should only and I mean ONLY go to these schools if you get a FULL Scholarship. I too thought that law school would provide a safe and lucrative path... but alas, the legal industry in in shambles. Unless your in Yale or Harvard (as some of my relatives were), your law degree is relatively worthless.

    I would like to add that this is only true if one plans on to go the law firm... if your career choice is public service, then it should not matter where go. Public Service is good, esp. as a defense lawyer for minorities and the oppressed.

    See: http://www.law.uci.edu/

    ^ That is a true law school. Created for the public by the public and completely free.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Part of me doesn't like saying this, but I think it's time to let go of "Big Debt Small Law." It's been 3 months (or more) since the guy's last posting. It's over, the blog is dead.

    The writer was funny to some extent. Perhaps a little too over the top. I thought he was somewhat entertaining, but not super-great like some of the comments made him out to be.

    It might be time to take the blog off the right side "my blogs" list. I don't know if you'd feel compelled to replace the spot. If so, maybe JDU or even ATL. They're not quite the same style or even substance, but both are entertaining.

    Happy holidays, and have a wonderful New Year's!! :)

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  13. What I'd give to write like Skadden Farts!

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  14. The ABA is subject to a consent degree on antitrust grounds with the U.S. Department of Justice. It can't keep InfiniLaw out. Learn to law.

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  15. Yes, hiding behind the law - the last refuge of a scoundrel. BTW, what the hell is a "consent degree?" Learn how to write. (Since you are happy to give unsolicited advice, I am sure you will not be offended to receive the same.)

    So does this mean that the mafia can own and operate 20 law schools and the ABA MUST allow them to do so? Give me a break!

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  16. Do you really think that a typo is the same thing as not understanding the law? And that the mafia is the same thing as a for-profit corporation? That's pretty funny. And telling.

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  17. I was surfing Monster.com and found that Florida Coastal is looking for a temporary admissions file reader http://jobview.heraldtribune.monster.com/Admissions-File-Reader-Job-Jacksonville-FL-US-85204873.aspx

    And of course they want someone with a JD.

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  18. I attend Phoenix School of Law and I have to satisfy I am extremely happy with the education that I am receiving. Many law schools don;t care about preparing the student for practice, or actually teaching how to "practice" the law. Most law schools just care about what tier they are in and most of the professors couldn't care less if the students are actually engaging the material. Phoenix School of law on the other hand chooses to get students engaged in the material and teaches us how to analyze the law. Additionally, the professors are actually here for us so that when we do not understand something then they are willing to sit down and help us reach an understanding. I have nevr had a problem with getting ahold of my professor when I ave a question. While still maintianing the sompetitive nature that comes with any law school you truly reach an understanding for the law that is not only challenging, but also makes you practice ready.

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  19. By the way Nando your profile says you are in Technology and your occupation is a "scam buster." Sounds like you went to a law school and ended up not being able to get a job in the legal field so decided to take out your frustration on Third tier schools that actually get their graduates careers in the legal profession. I may be wrong about this, but that is what it sounds like to me.

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  20. I graduated from FCSL last May and got a job working $10 an hour for eight months before I got laid off. Currently, I'm on unemployment trying to find work. Several of my graduated friends have similar stories. One went back to the job he had before law school, another took a job as a lawyer but only got paid by the job- she made $2,800 in six months. I'm not saying that these schools shouldn't exist, but I was a very upbeat and hopeful person while in law school only to find a rather barren job market. I am considering becoming a school teacher or police officer so I can pay the over $120,000 in loans I have via the public service option.

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  21. I graduated from FCSL last May and got a job working $10 an hour for eight months before I got laid off. Currently, I'm on unemployment trying to find work. Several of my graduated friends have similar stories. One went back to the job he had before law school, another took a job as a lawyer but only got paid by the job- she made $2,800 in six months. I'm not saying that these schools shouldn't exist, but I was a very upbeat and hopeful person while in law school only to find a rather barren job market. I am considering becoming a school teacher or police officer so I can pay the over $120,000 in loans I have via the public service option.

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  22. What an amazing content is this and surely it makes realize each and everyone who read this. Thanks for providing so fantastic and sweet suggestions ....i really appreciate it.
    Read more on: Legal transcription India

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  23. These schools are a scam. A friend of mine has constantly complained about how he had no reading period and was forced to take six courses at once...including con law.

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  24. I'm a reporter looking at doing a story about CharlotteLaw and whether or not what they're offering is worth what they charge. I'm interested in talking with people that have applied there or gone either to Charlotte Law or FCSL. Please email me at sarah@ncpolicywatch.com and I can explain more about the piece I'm working on. Thanks in advance for your help.

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  25. check out top-law-schools...pretty good info about CSL and very accurate...Smith...that's a given and trust me law school is nothing compared to more scientific studies or military training...

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  26. Phoenix School of Law starting harassing me when I enrolled with the LSAC. One of their soulless recruiters even emailed me with an offer of a scholarship. I really dodged a bullet with that one.

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  27. Nicholas,
    I see when you wrote the comment you were currently attending the Phx $chool of Law. I don't blame you for being defensive considering that sites like this probably blew your mind and caused you to second guess your horrible decision to attend such a crappy law school. I wonder if you've graduated since you wrote the above comment and are now understanding what a scam it is. What with ASU and UofA law schools around, why would anyone hire you? Well, best of luck to you.

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  28. Moreover, if you end up practicing it will be in a small or solo firm where you are subject to constant attack by state bars so they can demonstrate that they are "protecting the public" which is a bunch of horse shit. Go take a look at Twitter VAStateBarNot and see what it says about the Virginia Bar. State bars are just that, a bar to free economic competition. I know many 2nd, 3rd and 4th tier law school grads who are three times a smart as some 1st tier law school grads, but they are denied the change for a job because they do not have the handshake.

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  29. Phoenix School of Law had an 82% pass rate of the Bar Exam in July 2011. Its students did much better than Arizona State University. Passing the bar exam is what law school is all about. The Exam verifies you know the law.

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  30. Hello moron. Bar passage DOES NOT EQUAL legal employment, bitch. Law firms would rather hire JDs from Arizone State and Arizona, cockroach. It does not matter that you believe otherwise, idiot. In the final analysis, this commode is still run by a for-profit corporation. As such, the school does not give one damn about the students.

    This is also the case at most non-profit colleges, including the state schools. However, companies such as Infilaw and Kaplan are transparent about their objectives, i.e. to be profit centers.

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  31. I enrolled at Phoenix Law when it first opened because I could not attend school full time and they were the only ones that offered a part-time program. This was the most awful experience!!! There was one professor who just did not like me and since they only had a handful of professors on staff I could not avoid her. She taught 3 of my first year classes. When I approached the Dean, who was her friend, he told me he could not get involved in such matters. I had good grades in all other classes except hers and one of the professors, a retired judge, actually went to bat for me. I know I wasn't the only one because she was doing this to several other students as well.
    Obviously the ABA doesn't care about such things because they didn't even acknowledge my complaint or do anything about it.
    I guess money talks. I am still paying back the $40,000 in loan money I had to borrow to pay them. It's funny how I have always been a top student my entire life and just completed my Masters in Accountancy with straight A's but according to her I wasn't qualified to be in law school. By the way at that time I had 10 years experience in the legal field.

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  32. I'm using "Anonymous" as it's easier to post that way. But since there are 12 billion "anonymous" commenters above me, you can just refer to me as guy that's frustrated with the law and the schools that supposedly teach it. Shortened nick: FrustratedGuy.

    In my experience, PSL was a shitty "school". They hired "law professors" with thick accents that you cannot even understand. In my class with a "professor" from somewhere (probably Germany) there were 30 people in my class and they flunked 28 of them. They also kept thousands of students dollars in tuition/fees. I'm in Arizona and can tell you that UofA and ASU are significantly better schools (top tier, according to the damned US News - and according to me as well). They're also about 60-70% cheaper (for in state residents). PSL hasn't had a dean for a long time because nobody wants that headache.

    I do have a 'friend' that went to ASU law but he works for himself part-time now out of his own house. He has his own construction business too which he does full-time, to my knowledge. He did mess up a case I had him represent me on. He messed up pretty bad. That created my philosophy that to err is human but to severely err is lawyerly.

    <3 (love) to all the law students struggling to get ahead in this sick game created by the ABA and good luck to all that have read this for whatever reason has interested them.

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  33. I'm using "Anonymous" as it's easier to post that way. But since there are 12 billion "anonymous" commenters above me, you can just refer to me as guy that's frustrated with the law and the schools that supposedly teach it. Shortened nick: FrustratedGuy.

    In my experience, PSL was a shitty "school". They hired "law professors" with thick accents that you cannot even understand. In my class with a "professor" from somewhere (probably Germany) there were 30 people in my class and they flunked 28 of them. They also kept thousands of students dollars in tuition/fees. I'm in Arizona and can tell you that UofA and ASU are significantly better schools (top tier, according to the damned US News - and according to me as well). They're also about 60-70% cheaper (for in state residents). PSL hasn't had a dean for a long time because nobody wants that headache.

    I do have a 'friend' that went to ASU law but he works for himself part-time now out of his own house. He has his own construction business too which he does full-time, to my knowledge. He did mess up a case I had him represent me on. He messed up pretty bad. That created my philosophy that to err is human but to severely err is lawyerly.

    <3 (love) to all the law students struggling to get ahead in this sick game created by the ABA and good luck to all that have read this for whatever reason has interested them.

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  34. Funny, haven't seen very many comments since PSL's bar passage rates went in the toilet 60% range. So, PSL drum beaters, what say you now about your beloved super school?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. considering that was one test and they are now back to beating ASU.... You may want to get your facts straight. Don't feel bad PSL rejected you!

      Delete
  35. Charlotte Law is part of Infilaw. It has a horrible rep in the business and legal community and it's been said no one will hire CL graduates. The school and this company is a scam to reap the financial benefits of the Federal Govt Student Loans. Most students will not be able to repay because they never graduate, CL makes sure they drop many students each year, no one will hire a CSL student, they don't pass the state bar. They were purchased or merged with Sterling Partners in Baltimore Maryland. Obviously this investment company, Sterling Partners, did not do their due diligence. The ABA is at fault for all these for profit law schools, the ABA accredits these schools and the back door boys club continues to flourish. The ABA has not created a separate dept. to monitor these for profit schools. The schools can give a teacher the title of professor and the school creates the rules to give such title, they do not follow a State University Rules for qualifying for such titles. Dennis Stone, the President of Charlotte Law claims he is the Founder of Infilaw. Interesting that a Founder, who used to be in charge of Law Libraries, is also the President of one of the horrible and unethical schools of law. Ricky boy, Inatome is not a CEO except for the print on the paper. He can't fire Dennis Stone, he and the others cover up when Stone, and lord knows whom else, does not follow the School Handbook, the guidelines for meeting with the students, teacher problems, testing problems, etc. The ABA needs to step up and the Federal Government needs to stop all student loans to Infilaw Schools. In fact, Infilaw has to meet a financial minimum with Sterling Partners so Charlotte Law brought in over 600 low scoring LSAT students for the Fall 2012 semester. Charlotte law rented class rooms from another college about two miles away. Charlotte Law could not hire teachers for these students so the classes were huge. Charlotte law cant hire teachers for the existing students, thus they just fail them.

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  36. Estate lawyer help!

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  37. Help my sister is Taking everthing!

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