I enrolled in a master's level graduate program in 2009. After completing half of the program, I dropped out due to financial reasons. I returned and was told by the department that I had to pay for and retake all coursework previously taken - one year's worth. After contacting the dean, I was told I would not need to retake coursework. Nevertheless, the department for the graduate program demanded that I retake the courses or be dismiss me from the program. I ended up having to pay thousands of dollars to retake the courses I previously took due to fear of being kicked out and of being unable to finish my degree. I had obtained grades of "A" in those courses.
Read the school's policies and employ an attorney to analyze them for you if necessary. You will need to know the policies at the time you left as well. You don't mention when you went back, and times are important.
This should not be considered legal advice and is intended for educational purposes only. It does not constitute a contract for legal services between any parties. Answers are given to questions for which there may be additional facts not mentioned which might change the legal issues or consequences.
Although it is possible that you may be able to get a refund on those previously taken courses, the issue is that there was a fairly substantial amount of time from when you first took them (2009) versus when you had to take them again (2015/2016). Those entry level courses may have changed significantly enough to justify to the school that you would need to retake them.
And even if they did not change, it all comes down to the school's policies and whether you took the time to find out what you needed to know before re-enrolling. You would have been able to discuss these policies with the department head and/or the dean before re-enrolling and receive a final answer regarding whether you would need to re-take them again. From your post, it seems that you had already re-enrolled, THEN asked about whether you could by-pass the entry-level courses.
In short, it's doubtful that you have any case against the school to press them to refund you the amounts paid for the entry-level courses. You should contact local education counsel to review the policies and see if there is any way you could press the school into a refund, but you should reasonably expect that it is not likely to happen.
This answer provides general advice and should not be understood as to create an attorney-client relationship between the questioner and the responding attorney.
The school has discretion to accept or reject prior credits. Even though you are attending the same school, given how much time has passed, your situation is no different than someone who is trying to transfer credit from another school. It is uncommon to have old credits count. It would be helpful to know what you were studying. However, on the surface, I would say it is highly unlikely that you have any case against the school to demand a refund. But, more information is needed to form a reliable opinion on the matter.
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