WA AG orders $500,000 in restitution from UW sorority over rent payment scheme
Jul 6, 2022, 12:39 PM | Updated: Jul 7, 2022, 7:22 am
(Mike Linksvayer via Flickr Creative Commons)
A University of Washington sorority is accused of taking “advantage of students” by kicking them out during the pandemic but still charging them for housing.
Alpha Omicron Pi is being ordered to refund or waive more than $500,000.
State Attorney General Bob Ferguson has taken legal action after complaints from local sorority members.
The sorority charged students a housing fee of $6,250 for the 2020–2021 school year. Alpha Omicron Pi also charged members late fees, ranging from about $3 to $75, for each month they did not pay, despite late fees’ prohibition under pandemic moratoriums on rent.
Researchers at UW vote yes on unionization
Ferguson’s office will be reaching out to at least 68 UW students who may qualify for financial restitution under a consent decree.
“This sorority took advantage of students, charging them thousands of dollars for housing they could not access or use,” Ferguson wrote in a news release. “Alpha Omicron Pi’s actions were clear violations of the protections put in place to protect Washingtonians from the spread of COVID-19. Thanks to the students who spoke up and brought this to our attention, the sorority must cancel or refund these unlawful fees.”
KIRO Newsradio has asked Alpha Omicron Pi for its comment on the settlement but no response has been given at this time.