The University of Delaware will pay $6.3 million to settle a lawsuit filed by students over its campus shutdown during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Associated Press reported.
Five student representatives filed the lawsuit against the University of Delaware, alleging breach of contract and unjust enrichment. They argued that before the pandemic, the university charged less for some online classes than for in-person ones but did not offer a price reduction when all classes moved online in spring of 2020. The plaintiffs also noted that they paid fees for such facilities as the gym, student centers and the health center, which were closed when the campus shut down.
In March, a judge ruled that the suit could proceed as a class action.
According to the settlement, which still needs final court approval, the plaintiffs’ attorneys will receive $2.1 million of the $6.3 million payout, plus up to $250,000 in expense reimbursements. The five plaintiffs will each get $5,000, and the remainder will be split equally among undergraduate and graduate students who paid tuition and fees for the spring 2020 semester.
More than 17,000 undergraduates were reportedly enrolled at that time.