Consumer Protection Division
(208) 334-2424 or
Toll-free at (800) 432-3545
Media Contact: Bob Cooper
Date: February 12, 2008
Attorney General Encourages Helicopter School Students to Contact his Office
(Boise) - Attorney General Lawrence Wasden urges students of Silver State Helicopters to file a complaint with his Consumer Protection Division if they paid for instruction they did not receive due to the school’s closure. This information will assist the Attorney General in his review of the matter, and will enable the Attorney General to advise the students as to their options.
Complaint forms are available on the Attorney General’s website at www.ag.idaho.gov or by calling 334-2424. The toll free number for Idaho residents outside the Boise calling area is 1-800-4323545.
“I encourage affected students to file complaints, as this information will assist my office in determining whether we can help,” Attorney General Lawrence Wasden said. “Although the bankruptcy proceeding impedes our ability to take legal action to help the students recover their money, we want to gather and review the facts carefully in order to determine what assistance, if any, we can provide.”
In addition, students should contact their lenders as soon as possible for information about possible loan forgiveness or how to transfer their loans to another school. Students should be prepared to give their lenders the date they started at the school, a list of which licensing or certification programs they are enrolled in, and which licensing or certification programs they have completed. Students may also wish to contact a lawyer to advise them of their rights.
Silver State Helicopters, LLC, closed on February 3, 2008, and subsequently filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition in Nevada’s bankruptcy court. The company had operated in 17 states, including Idaho. According to a company-issued press release, the school blames its financial crisis on declining U.S. credit markets, which limited the availability of student loans and resulted in a sharp decline in enrollment.
Former students of the Boise academy have contacted the Attorney General’s Office and reported that they took out large student loans to pay for tuition and that the funds were paid to the school before it closed. Now that the school is closed and in bankruptcy, students are concerned that the student loan lenders may expect the students to repay the loans even though students did not receive instruction from or complete their training at the school.
Silver State Helicopters’ bankruptcy filings report the company’s estimated assets are valued between $0 and $50,000 and its liabilities amount to $10 to $50 million. The company does not expect that funds will be available to distribute to all of its estimated 5,000 to 10,000 creditors.
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