Pension Trust Fund for Operating Engineers v. DeVry Education Group, Inc.

Updated: December 20, 2018

Status: Ongoing Case

On August 21, 2017, Labaton Sucharow was appointed as lead counsel in this securities fraud class action against DeVry Education Group, Inc. ("DeVry") and certain individual defendants, pending in the Northern District of Illinois. DeVry provides educational services globally through various subsidiaries, including DeVry University, one of the largest postsecondary educational institutions in the United States. 

The plaintiff alleges that over a five-year class period, the defendants made false and misleading statements to investors about employment and salary statistics for DeVry University graduates. More specifically, the plaintiff alleges that the defendants repeatedly told investors that approximately 90 percent of DeVry University’s graduates obtained employment in their field of study within six months of graduation, making salaries of around $40,000. The plaintiff alleges that these statements were materially false and misleading because the defendants inappropriately counted graduates who they should not have, and excluded graduates that they should have counted. For example, the plaintiff asserts that DeVry counted jobs that could not reasonably be considered to be in graduates’ "field of study,” and inappropriately excluded graduates who were looking for a job, but who DeVry classified as “not actively seeking employment.” The plaintiff alleges that the manipulation of DeVry’s job placement statistics artificially inflated the value of DeVry’s stock price.

On December 6, 2017, the court granted the defendants’ motion to dismiss, but also granted the plaintiffs' leave to amend. Plaintiffs filed a Third Amended Complaint on January 29, 2018, which included additional allegations based on documents plaintiff obtained from government entities through the Freedom of Information Act, along with allegations from 13 new confidential witnesses. On December 20, 2018, Judge Jorge L. Alonso denied the defendants’ motion to dismiss the Third Amended Complaint. 

The case is Pension Trust Fund for Operating Engineers v. DeVry Education Group, Inc. (N.D. Ill.). Labaton Sucharow represents the lead plaintiff Utah Retirement Systems.