Multiple lawsuits filed against Saint Augustine's University for not paying bills on time

Akilah Davis Image
Friday, February 16, 2024
Lawsuits show history of financial woes for Saint Augustine's
Financial documents reveal deep problems plaguing Saint Augustine's University.

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Financial documents reveal deep woes plaguing Saint Augustine's University.

For example, Wellfleet Insurance Company is suing the university stating it breached contract by failing to pay premiums.

The policy took effect in August 2021 and it was signed to cover student health insurance plans. Records show the lawsuit was filed in August 2023.

Wellfleet said Saint Augustine's owes it $439,000 after making partial payments of $240,000.

Another document uncovered by the ABC11 I-Team shows the university recently paid $93,000 to Wilbron Industries. That's a public relations and communications firm based out of Birmingham, Alabama. The company's LinkedIn profile states it provides communications counsel to college presidents.

Wilbron Industries also sued Saint Augustine's in 2023. The company said at the time that the university failed to pay its bill. However, receipts later show the money was paid in full in Feb. 2024.

That payment came just a few days before the university failed to pay its faculty and staff on time.

On Friday, some students at the university told ABC11 they had not received their financial aid refund checks from this semester or last semester.

Plus, trash at campus apartments and dorms continue to pile up, due to the absence of university maintenance staffers.

Saint Augustine's University said its interim president will be speaking Monday at a press conference. ABC11 will carry that live in the ABC11 North Carolina app.

EDITOR'S NOTE: An earlier version of this article stated that a man working in the cafeteria was laid off due to financial problems at the university. The company in charge of that man's employment has since contacted ABC11 and said his termination was not related to financial problems.