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A 32-Year-Old Former College Student In NYC Is Refusing To Leave Her Dorm Because She Simply Refuses

Hunter College has now been forced to take legal action against the former student who allegedly owes more than $94,000 in residence fees over two years.

Posted on March 6, 2018, at 1:19 p.m. ET

Hunter College in NYC has filed a lawsuit against one of their former students, claiming she's been squatting in their Manhattan dorm after dropping out two years ago and has racked up over $94,000 in unpaid fees.

According to a recent lawsuit, Hunter College is attempting to evict the 32-year-old former student named Lisa S. Palmer, whom they believe has been illegally squatting in their 25th Street dorm for two years (one of these dorms is pictured above).

The lawsuit alleges Palmer, who was a Geography major, failed to pay her dues "almost immediately" after enrolling in the dorm, and dropped out in 2016 when she was denied summer housing.

The school claims they've sent her notices of owed residence fees as well as repeated eviction notices over the years, that have been "ignored," the lawsuit alleges. Hunter College is asking for repayment of "a staggering $94,000 in unpaid residence hall charges on account of her continued occupancy."

Palmer is not only ignoring these legal demands, she is denying she owes the school anything. She told BuzzFeed News she plans to stay and she believes she should be entitled to stay. "I am more determined than ever before to fight this lawsuit," she said. She's also disputing some allegations by Hunter College in the lawsuit.

Facebook / Lisa Palmer

Palmer specifically disputes the claim that she was denied summer housing in 2016 — she claims she signed a contract and was allowed to be in housing that summer.

"I stayed during the summer of 2016 following the expiration of my spring 2016 housing contract because I was permitted to do so by the Dean of Housing and/or Office of Residence Life. I also signed a Summer 2016 housing contract," she said.

When asked to see a copy of the contract, Palmer told BuzzFeed News she's "sav[ing] some information and documents for the actual lawsuit," and/or when she has an attorney.

She's currently looking for legal representation, but "none have met my expectations in terms of their deduction ability," she said.

In an interview with CBS2, Palmer said she is not planning on paying the accrued bill because it's not "realistic."

According to Palmer, Hunter College forced her to drop out a semester before she was able to graduate because she was unable to pay her student fees. Therefore, she claims, she should not have to pay them.

“I don’t think paying it off is realistic, and I also don’t believe that I should have to pay it off,” she told a reporter at CBS2.

“I feel like every semester is a new opportunity to register for courses,” she added. “I think I should just stay and fight the case.”

Palmer wanted to stress to BuzzFeed News that she has "above a 2.0 GPA with Good Academic Standing," which was one of the conditions cited by Hunter College that allowed her residency in spring of 2016.

The 32-year-old student says she's maintaining two jobs while living in the dorms. And she plans to continue living there and wants to eventually complete her degree.

The lawsuit, however, alleges in the fall of 2016, a Hunter College official settled with Palmer an agreement that she could remain a resident in their 25th Street dorm if she paid off her course fees at the time and reenrolled in courses.

The school claims Palmer had "neither paid of off her balance, nor had she enrolled in any courses." They're now seeking to evict her within 30 days.

Online, the legal dispute between the university and former student has caused curious conversation and disputes.

Facebook: kinfolkkollective

A Facebook post defending Palmer has captioned her motion as “reparations” and incited support for the position she’s been put in.

"She ain't taking space from nobody and she ain't costing you shit,” a top comment reads.

"I went to Hunter. It's a commuter school. Most of the student body lives in the 5 boroughs which is why the 8 people who come from other parts of the country to go to school here get away with this stuff. The dorms are EM-PTY...I ain't mad at her,” someone else weighed in.

Others are questioning how reasonable the high residence fee is against a much lower tuition cost for the school.

Meanwhile, many others on social media are flat-out drawing a line. And stating, quite clearly and basically, that Palmer needs to go.

This is bananas. How has she been able to stay for so long? I’m surprised the college didn’t send the police department to remove her from the premises. At private schools this would never happen. I wonder if she’s struggling with a mental illness. If so get her some help.

They're baffled, and cracking jokes.

I have so many thoughts lol

File under "Finesse Lord"

A Hunter College spokesperson told BuzzFeed News while they "cannot comment on a specific legal action ... Hunter is committed to giving priority to our current student body."

"Dorm rooms are a very important resource for a commuter school," they added.

You can check out the entire lawsuit below.


This post has been updated to include quotes from Palmer to BuzzFeed News.

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.