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The Law Blogger is a law-related blog that informs and discusses current matters of legal interest to readers of The Oakland Press and to consumers of legal services in the community. We hope readers will  find it entertaining but also informative. The Law Blogger does not, however, impart legal advice, as only attorneys are licensed to provide legal counsel.
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Thursday, July 3, 2014

Dismissal of Cooley Law School's Defamation Lawsuit Affirmed by Sixth Circuit

By:  Timothy P. Flynn

Just last week, I was arguing a wrongful death civil rights appeal before the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.  It had been my first trip to Cincinnati for an appeal in more than 5-years.  Always very serious business down there.

Then today, I noted that the National Law Journal carried a story of Cooley Law School's ill-fated defamation law suit that was first dismissed by a federal judge in Detroit, then affirmed by the Sixth Circuit.

Faithful readers of our blog will recall that Cooley was one of our pet subjects in years past.  Usually, the law school's own folly provided grist for our mill; i.e. when they, with an apparent straight face, proclaimed their #2 law school ranking on their own website.

Here is the trajectory of the Cooley law suit.  First, several of Cooley's alumni sued in federal court on a fraud theory claiming the tier three school's promotional literature and web site misrepresented how their graduates fared in the legal industry.  [Keep in mind the timing of the disgruntled students' attempted class action suit was during the Great Recession.]  Next, while those suits were pending, Cooley hired Miller Canfield to counter sue and to file separate actions for defamation.

It was Cooley's defamation suits that were dismissed for lack of merit.  We here at the Law Blogger predicted the suits would fail after years of expensive discovery and an even more costly appeal; our prediction has come true.

It gets costly to prop-up an over-inflated image.  Perhaps coincidentally, the NLJ's article also referenced projected faculty and staff cut backs scheduled for the nation's largest law school.

So if you are a current Cooley Law student, and you are planning to attend the Ann Arbor Campus, think again; that extension has been terminated. You will need to commute to either Auburn Hills or the flagship campus in Lansing.

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