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Four top colleges pay $166 million in financial aid settlement

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TLDR:

  • Four elite universities settle financial aid lawsuit for $166 million.
  • The universities are accused of colluding to fix the amount of financial aid offered to students.

Four prestigious universities have agreed to settle a federal class-action lawsuit, accusing them of colluding to fix the amount of financial aid offered to students. Dartmouth College, Rice University, Northwestern University, and Vanderbilt University will pay a total of $166 million to resolve the claims against them. To date, ten out of 17 defendant schools have settled the case, denying the substance of the charges. The lawsuit alleged that the universities engaged in a price-fixing scheme by sharing a methodology for determining financial aid awards, violating Section 568 of the Improving America’s Schools Act of 1994. The settlement, totaling $284 million, will provide cash payments to affected undergraduate students, estimated at around $750 per student. The remaining seven universities in the case continue to deny the charges brought against them.

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