Thousands of students launch legal bid for £20m compensation after university strikes

The Independent is reporting that more than 5,000 students have signed up to a lawsuit to claim compensation for lost teaching time during the university strikes.

The group claim – which involves students from some of the most prestigious institutions across the UK – could cost individual universities as much as £20m. 

The University and College Union estimated that the strike action – which was called off in April  – affected more than one million students and a total of 575,000 teaching hours were lost.

Shimon Goldwater, a senior solicitor at Asserson, said: “The compensation claim against universities is building rapidly. Not only are we receiving 500 new sign ups a week, a leading barrister’s advice reaffirms our long-held view that that this claim is likely to succeed.”

“The size of this claim, based on £1,000 compensation per student, has already risen to £5m, with the potential to hit £20m,” he added. 

Xavier Alexis-Greenfield, a first-year law student at Kent University, said he felt lost during his exams last month after he missed out on 14 days of “vital” contact time ahead of the assignments.  

 “Those 14 days were the last two weeks of our teaching for the whole year. So we turned up to the exams lost.

“That put me at risk especially because the lectures and seminars that were missing were the ones that were examined,” he told The Independent. “We don’t know how we have done.”

Universities UK declined to comment on the group claim but it highlighted advice to students to go through their university’s internal complaints procedure rather than using lawyers. 

Read more Thousands of students launch legal bid for £20m compensation after university strikes

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