I am trying to find out about a nursing school I attended. After completing the yearlong program and paying $20,000 to the school, the owner says she wont do a graduation ceremony or provide proper documentation to us. This leaves my classmates and I unable to sit for the state exam. What should we do about this difficult matter?
Nancy Brent replies:
You should consult with a nurse attorney or attorney in your state as soon as possible about your situation with the school. There may be several options open to you, but only an attorney who knows your states laws and the state nurse practice act and rules can specifically advise you.
Options that may be open to you and your classmates is a violation of the state nurse practice act or rules if the state nurse practice act and rules specifically require any school that is closing or not graduating students to do specific things, such as notifying all students, notify the board of nursing, and provide copies of student records to students. Or, if the school misrepresented its obligations to the student body or was fraudulent in some way (e.g., taking money from individuals with no intent to provide instruction in nursing or graduate students), a lawsuit on behalf of the students may be possible. And, if there are any documents from the school concerning its relationship with the students (e.g., school catalog, contract), a lawsuit on the basis of breach of implied contract or contract may be possible.
It is important for you to seek legal advice sooner rather than later.