What happened?

Peiffer Wolf Files Federal Class Action Lawsuit Against Capella University

Capella university lawsuit

The law firm of Peiffer Wolf filed a federal class action lawsuit in the United States District Court for the District of Minnesota on April 20, 2018, alleging Capella University and Capella Education Company, commonly known simply as “Capella,” violated doctoral students’ rights by creating a process intended to ensure that it would be difficult, if not impossible, for students to timely complete, or complete at all, their doctoral programs.  The lawsuit alleges that Capella made misleading statements about the time to completion and cost of their mostly student-loan financed doctoral degree.

What Happened? Capella University Misrepresentations


Capella University and Capella Education Company, commonly known simply as “Capella,” essentially operated a “bait and switch” program. The bait was displayed when Capella’s marketing materials and recruiters deceived prospective and current students by making misleading statements about the time to completion and cost of their mostly student-loan financed doctoral degrees. If you have Capella recruiter emails with the following “typical learner” language, you should Contact Us immediately:

Our typical learner will complete their PhD program in 3 years, plus or minus one quarter, by averaging 2 course per quarter. Their weekly time investment to work at this pace is about 18-24 hours per week.

Capella’s marketing materials, recruiters, and student handbooks also reassured prospective students that after their doctoral coursework, colloquium, and/or field hours were completed, they would be awarded a doctoral degree. Once they were committed, having invested significant amounts of time and money in the program completing their coursework, problems began.


Additional Tuition Payments


Instead of completing the promised doctoral degree program requirements and being awarded a doctoral degree in the advertised time, students became victims of Capella’s “switch.” It created an endless routine of hurdles for the students and benefitted Capella from additional quarterly tuition payments.


Students who believed they were getting ever closer to obtaining their doctoral degree were in fact stuck with decreasing resources, faculty turnover, disorganization and a lack of oversight, all of which increased the length of the doctoral students’ enrollments at Capella.


Student Loan Debt


Capella’s promises of approximately $35,000 and two years and $50,000 and 3 years to complete a doctoral degree were replaced by skyrocketing student-loan debt, while the degree programs dragged on far beyond Capella’s promised timelines.  Finally, most students’ debt would grow so large, they would have no choice but to un-enroll so they could dedicate themselves to working to pay back their crushing student loans, without degrees to show for their work.


In reality, Capella later admitted that its doctoral programs were designed to take much longer than prospective students were promised.


Capella Victim? | FREE Consultation


Current and prior Capella Doctoral students who believe they were subjected to fraudulent conduct or misrepresentations by Capella should Contact us Today for a FREE Consultation. Contact us by filling out an online Contact Form, calling 314-669-3600, emailing Paul Lesko at plesko@peifferwolf.com, or by emailing Brandon Wise at bwise@peifferwolf.com today.

Contact Us for a FREE Consultation.


    Victim of Capella’s Misrepresentations?