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Is it possible to have student loans discharged if school placed me in classes above my ability?

Tampa, FL |

I attended an online school. Was placed into four classes, two requiring use of Power Point and Excel, neither of which I know how to use. Or had ever seen before. (Other students had already been using these at their jobs for years.) Also was placed into an advanced math class - College Algebra which also used Analytical Geometry; I have never even passed Algebra I. I struggled as best I could to pass these classes but of course failed all three.

I needed constant coaching for using the PP and Excel and was constantly chided for not knowing how to use them. My work was always dismissed as unprofessional or told I put no "real" effort into it. When I told them I had no idea how to use either, they replied with a shrug.

Do I have any rights in this situation or no?

Attorney Answers 3


  1. Best answer

    A third-party lender is not the party who is required by law to eat the losses of unpaid loans if the school inaccurately placed you in difficult classes. The placement issue is between you and the school.

    Theoretically, you might have a claim of set-off against any loans you owe directly to the school based on bad school services if your contract (enrollment and admission docs; school rules, regs and policies) puts the school under an obligation re your placement (very unlikely). But that is the longest of long-shots. Your school had drop dates for classes, and there were other remedies available to you to mitigate any erroneous placement.

    In short, no experienced attorney will take your claim on a contingency fee because your potential for success is immeasurably low. And it would be very unwise for you to spend tens of thousands of dollars out of your own pocket as necessary to bring and maintain a lawsuit on this theory.

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  2. Student loans are not usually discharged. Typically, intro classes are required before moving onto advanced subjects, such as in math and pre-requisite knowledge areas, such as PowerPoint and Excel, should be noted in the course description.

    Anastatia Quirk Ellis, Esq. is licensed to practice law in Florida, Massachusetts and U.S. Tax Court, This answer is provided as general information and does not initiate an attorney-client relationship. You can reach The Law Offices of Anastatia Quirk Ellis, P.A. at 813-625-0222.


  3. If you took out a loan to pay for the tuition, you will not be able to discharge the debt; instead, your gripe would be with the school itself. If, however, you owe tuition to the school, that is a dischargeable debt.

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