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CalAttorney2
CalAttorney2, Attorney
Category: Education Law
Satisfied Customers: 10238
Experience:  Civil litigation attorney for individuals and businesses.
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My son, under a scholarship, learned s school was under an

Customer Question

My son, under a scholarship, learned his school was under an APR ban only after he returned to school this past fall. Administration was aware of the ban in the early summer but failed to inform the students until they arrived back to school in September. By this time, it was far too late to consider or transfer to another school leaving them with no options. My son had to make a decision, stay and complete his final year (and not play the sport he attended the school for) or leave and complete his final year elsewhere. After days of contemplating his options he decided to leave the school, return home, and explore his options. Now, after 6 months, he feels he was betrayed and has failed.
We, as parents, feel the school, betrayed our son and ask whether or not we have any legal rights against the school for our financial losses and more importantly his loss to play his sport and finish his degree.
Thank you
Peter
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Education Law
Expert:  retireddebra replied 9 months ago.

What province is this please?

Are you saying your son was attending this university under a sport's scholarship but found out that he could not participate in that sport because of the ban?

What are your financial losses?

Will he able to enroll in another university next year?

What province is this please?

Are you saying they knew about the ban but withheld this information?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
We live in the province of Ontario.
Yes, he was attending the University of Idaho under a scholarship and only when he returned for his last year he learned he was unable to participate in his sport because of the ban.
Our financial losses are huge. Our son lost his last year of University because it was far too late to apply to another school. We incurred much costs to return him and his vehicle across the country to back for his final year, and now he is trying to obtain his degree through on-line courses which will take possibly years to complete.
Unfortunately most universities are not interested in providing a final year student with a scholarship and for that reason he has basically lost his ability to attend another school this upcoming season.
The University provided us with a letter, apologizing for their error and clearly stated they knew about the ban and through miscommunications failed to inform the athletes of the ban.
Expert:  retireddebra replied 9 months ago.

I will have to move this to the US law list.

Please don't reply back as that may delay the move.

Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 9 months ago.

Dear Customer,

Thank you for using our forum, my name is***** am a different expert on the forum, and I look forward to assisting you today.

I am sorry to learn about your son's situation.

Unfortunately I do not believe that he has a very good case based on what you have posted.

If I understand the situation correctly, your son initially decided to go to school for the final year, found out about the ban, and withdrew from classes, deciding not to complete his studies at the University.

Your theory of recovery is that if he had known of the ban earlier he could possibly have made a transfer to another university, where he may have received a scholarship.

The problems with this type of claim are primarily two-fold: (1) the plaintiff failed to mitigate their damages (your son was already enrolled in school, but failed to attend school and complete his degree); and (2) the plaintiff's damages are "speculative" in nature (unlike a contract claim, or a general tort claim, the damages here are based on a series of speculations: your son may or may not have been accepted as a transfer student, he may or may not have received a scholarship elsewhere, as you posted in your follow up, most schools are unwilling to provide senior athletes with scholarships).

Damages for travel are not going to be recoverable, he needed to travel to school in any event.

With the above understanding, you may want to try approaching the university and see if you can negotiate a settlement with them so that your son can re-enroll and complete his studies (you say he is trying to get his degree, if that is his goal, work towards that), or some other mutually agreeable resolution. Keep in mind, I am not saying you have "no" claim, just that this is not a very strong claim - so keep your expectations in check (this is especially true if you go looking for attorneys to represent you in this matter - do not spend more on litigation than you can hope to recover in damages). But trying to get the university to reach a resolution to "make it right" is probably something you can do, but expect the negotiations to be flexible on both sides (remember, if your son did leave mid-year, the school had already offered for him to complete his education, he made a decision not to take it, so he is asking for a second chance as well).

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