Ex-Trump U Students Will Finally Get Paid

President avoids trial as $25M settlement is approved
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 7, 2018 8:49 AM CST
President Avoids Trial in Trump U Fraud Case
Donald Trump attends a New York press conference announcing the establishment of Trump University on May 23, 2005.   (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews,File)

A lengthy legal battle between Donald Trump and Trump University students, who say they paid thousands of dollars for real estate "secrets" they never received, is finally over. On Tuesday, an appeals court in San Francisco approved a $25 million settlement reached last year while rejecting an appeal from a Florida woman who hoped to opt out of the class-action lawsuit and pursue a separate case against Trump, reports NBC News. Sherri Simpson, who says she paid $19,000 for Trump University classes, argued a notice sent to students early in the litigation progress promised they could opt out at the time the notice was sent or after a proposed settlement. But judges said the notice gave "only one opportunity to opt out." They added "among over 8,000 class members, Simpson is the only one advancing this understanding of the notice," per Politico.

The decision also referenced claims that Simpson's challenge was politically motivated to hurt the president. Throughout his presidential campaign, Trump vowed to fight allegations that students paid up to $35,000 for Trump University programs based on false promises they'd reveal Trump's "secrets of success," per the Los Angeles Times. Though Trump quickly agreed to the $25 million settlement after his election victory, his lawyers said he'd back out if Simpson were granted a trial. Though "we are disappointed … all of the lurid facts about the fraud won't receive the public hearing they deserve," her lawyer says Simpson will end her fight so that 4,000 students can receive payments. In what the appeals court calls a "highly favorable" deal, students are expected to get 80% to 90% of what they paid to the school while it was open from 2005 to 2010. (More Trump University stories.)

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