California Attorney General Warns Sailors Against Scams

Last Updated : 5/11/2011 10:06:42 AM

SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- California Consumer Law Deputy Attorney General spoke to San Diego-based command financial specialists (CFS) during quarterly CFS continuing education training, March 31.

In addition to the speach by Deputy Attorney General Howard Wayne, the session included highlighted information on private postsecondary school scams.

Private postsecondary schools are businesses, not funded by the state and most rely heavily on federal funding that potential students qualify for.

According to Wayne, military personnel need to be aware that some of the schools make unrealistic guarantees to students, including employment following graduation.

"A majority of these schools make a lot of promises they don't keep," said Wayne.

In 2009, then California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed Assembly Bill (AB) 48 (Portantino, Chapter 310, Statutes of 2009). AB 48, also known as the Private Postsecondary Education Act of 2009 (Act), established the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education within the Department of Consumer Affairs.

On Jan. 1, 2010, private postsecondary schools operating in California were placed under the jurisdiction of the Bureau and subject to the requirements of the Act.

Wayne said that while the state of California has prosecuted a number of these companies to date, private postsecondary education continues to be an on-going problem because some companies advertise things such as guaranteed employment following graduation, but once the students graduate often times they are left without a job and no means of paying back their student loans.

Several tips he supplied that consumers should use to help avoid some of the scams are:

• Check the school out on the Department of Consumer Affairs website
• Review the binding terms, conditions, cost and student disclosures in the enrollment agreement prior to enrolling
• Visit the classes and request to review the school's student completion and job placement rates
• Keep copies of all documents received from the school

"There is so much you can do prior to enrolling that will save you a lot in the end," said Wayne. "I hope you share this information with as many people as possible. Investing in your future is important, but verifying the facts and getting everything will save you on the long term."

For more information on approved private postsecondary education schools, you can visit the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education web site at www.bppe.ca.gov.

Tagged : ,