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Answering Needs of Colleges and Universities

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Higher Education Practice 

Pullman & Comley’s work with educational institutions extends beyond the K-12 classrooms to the campuses of several colleges and universities. Within the last year, attorneys from across the firm have partnered with college and university administrators on a variety of issues, including:

  • Successfully defending a university in a “tuition clawback” lawsuit brought by a Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustee to recover payments made by the debtor parents for their child’s undergraduate tuition payments made in the four years preceding the parents’ bankruptcy. Also currently defending another institution of higher education in a case where the Chapter 7 Trustee is suing to claw back tuition payments.
  • Reviewing a university’s varsity athletics program for compliance with Title IX’s nondiscrimination requirements – i.e., equal accommodation of the athletic interests and abilities of both sexes, and equal athletic benefits.
  • Assisting a college in negotiating a “payment in lieu of taxes” agreement with local tax authorities, updating the college’s bylaws and entering into alliances with local organizations to expand opportunities for the college’s students.
  • Significantly expanding the footprint of a university with assistance from our real estate and environmental attorneys.
  • Advising colleges on employee benefits programs, including 403(b) and 457 plans.