Kurzon Strauss Sued by Thomas Cooley Law School Over Data Query

Kurzon Strauss LLP was sued by the Thomas M. Cooley Law School over claims the New York law firm and two of its lawyers falsely claimed on websites that the school misrepresented graduate employment statistics.

Jesse Strauss, a Kurzon partner, along with attorney David Anziska, posted false statements on websites to “incite” the readers and to “troll” for plaintiffs for a purported class-action lawsuit against Cooley, according to the school’s complaint filed yesterday in state court in Lansing, Michigan.

“With ethics and professionalism at the core of our law school’s values, we cannot -- and will not -- sit back and let anyone circulate defamatory statements about Cooley or the choices our students and alumni made to seek their law degree here,” Brent Danielson, chairman of Cooley’s board of directors, said in a statement posted on the school’s website.

Anziska said yesterday in a phone interview that his firm was investigating numerous law schools for inflating the job placement rates of its graduates.

“This is one of the most ridiculous, absurd lawsuits filed in recent memory,” Anziska said. “We fully intend to countersue both Thomas Cooley and their lawyers for abusing the legal system.”

Anziska declined to comment further on the complaint filed by Cooley.

Cooley accused Anziska of posting statements on websites, including JD Underground and Craigslist, beginning in June to seek information from its graduates. The firm posted a retraction statement on JD Underground on June 15, according to the complaint.

‘Manipulating’ Data

Posts on Craigslist in New York and Detroit advertised a broad “wide-ranging” investigation of a number of law schools for “purportedly manipulating their post-graduate employment data,” lawyers for Cooley said in court papers.

In its statement yesterday, Cooley said its job placement rates are reported annually to the American Bar Association and the National Association for Law Placement nine months after graduations based on the results of surveys and are consistent with all 201 ABA accredited law schools.

Founded in 1972, Cooley is the largest law school in the nation, according to its Web site. The school has four campuses in Michigan.

The case is Thomas M. Cooley Law School v. Kurzon Strauss LLP, State of Michigan Circuit Court for the County of Ingham (Lansing).

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