09/29/23 | Court Certifies Class and Appoints Hagens Berman Co-Class Counsel
In an order dated Sept. 26, 2023, U.S. District Judge Dolly M. Gee denied Pepperdine’s motion to exclude testimony of plaintiffs’ expert and granted class certification in the ongoing case for students enrolled in spring 2020 classes. The order allows the class action to continue on behalf of all students who paid or were obligated to pay tuition, fees, or other costs to Pepperdine University for the spring 2020 academic term. The order also appointed Hagens Berman as co-class counsel in the lawsuit. Read the order »

Case Status
Class Certified
Case Caption
In re University of Southern California Tuition and Fees COVID-19 Refund Litigation
Co-Class Counsel
Practice Areas
U.S. District Court for the Central District of California Western Division
Case Number
University of Southern California, and the Board of Trustees of The University of Southern California
File Date


An anonymous student of the University of Southern California filed a class-action lawsuit seeking to represent all USC students enrolled at the university for the spring 2020 semester to obtain repayment of tuition, room and board and other expenses in light of the outbreak of COVID-19, according to attorneys at Hagens Berman.

The anonymous female student referred to in the lawsuit as Jane Doe is represented by Hagens Berman, which led a landmark sexual harassment class action against USC resulting in a $215 million settlement with the university and its former full-time gynecologist, Dr. George Tyndall. Approximately 18,000 individuals are covered by the settlement. The firm has also recently brought tuition and fee refund suits against Boston University, Brown University, George Washington University and Vanderbilt University, in which students and parents sued their universities.

The class-action lawsuit against USC and its board of trustees has been brought by a fulltime USC student and California resident. The case was filed May 7, 2020, in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California and accuses the university of breach of contract, unjust enrichment, conversion and violations of the California Business & Professional Code.


According to College Board, published tuition fees for 2018-2019 at state colleges are an average of $10,230 for state residents, and $26,290 for everyone else. This compares to an average of $35,830 at private non-profit colleges. On average, during the 2017-2018 school year, students spent $10,800 on room and board at public four-year institutions. At private non-profit four-year colleges and universities, the average cost goes up to $12,210.


Hagens Berman is one of the most successful consumer litigation law firms in the U.S. and has achieved more than $320 billion in settlements for consumers in lawsuits against food corporations, automakers, big banks and others. The firm has successfully taken on higher learning institutions as well, achieving hundreds of millions of dollars in settlements for students and alumnae to support campus safety and students' rights. Hagens Berman has achieved many record breaking victories in antitrust matters, and your claim will be handled by attorneys experienced in consumer law.


There is no cost or fee whatsoever involved in joining this case. In the event Hagens Berman or any other firm obtains a settlement that provides benefits to class members, the court will decide a reasonable fee to be awarded to the class' legal team. In no case will any class member ever be asked to pay any out-of-pocket sum.


Class Certification Granted

Class notice website uscremotelearninglawsuit.com

Nationwide Investigation

Hagens Berman is investigating universities and colleges across the nation and is seeking to represent students, parents and guardians against any higher education institution that has failed to repay losses due to COVID-19.

Attorneys' investigation includes all colleges and universities nationwide, and the firm is seeking to represent students, parents and guardians regardless of school.

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