How a Title IX Lawyer Can Help College Students
It is important for a college student to find the right legal representation when they feel their rights have been violated or they are subjected to a Title IX hearing and investigation. Our lawyers protect college students from unfair disciplinary procedures and mishandled investigations.
All parties must be treated fairly and with due process in schools that investigate allegations of sexual harassment or assault. Your attorney will protect your reputation by gathering evidence and protecting you during the disciplinary hearing.
Collateral Consequences of a Title IX Violation
The law prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender in all programs and activities of educational institutions that receive funding from the federal government. This includes schools and universities, as well as many professional programs, such a law or medical school.
Title IX covers a wide range of activities that occur off-campus. This includes internships and work placements. A violation of the law can lead to significant and lasting damage to a student's reputation. There is no statute of limitations for Title IX complaints, so some allegations may be brought against students even after they have graduated from college.
A Title IX Lawyer Normal will help the respondent understand what the process is. They will also review their school's code and handbook in order to determine whether they have policies covering sexual misconduct. This includes what constitutes consent under different circumstances. A Title IX lawyer will also address the issue with the preponderance standard used by hearing panelists, which can be biased towards accused students.
Investigating a Title IX complaint
Unlike Title VI which covers employment-based discrimination, Title IX explicitly covers sexual harassment in education settings. The Department of Education's standards and guidelines for what constitutes actionable, sexual harassment in education settings are similar to the ones that govern employment.
Title IX also requires that schools have procedures in place for students to report sex violence and harassment. These procedures may be disciplinary in nature, or they may be specifically designed to investigate complaints of sexual violence and harassment. Every school is required to designate a Title IX coordinator, and then make that information available to all employees and students.
Title IX also prohibits retaliation if you report or assist with an investigation or lawsuit. This prohibition also includes parents, family, and anyone else who assists with a claim or an investigation by a child.
Many Title IX investigation are conducted quickly and leave little time to collect all the necessary evidence. This can cause vital exculpatory data to be left out, especially when alleged witnesses or victims do not feel comfortable giving their full story.
Tamara Holder is a student advocate who defends students facing sexism in educational environments or programs that receive federal funding. This can range from rape and sexual harassment to gender identification or orientation.
Contrary to the criminal system's requirement of proof beyond all reasonable doubt, Title IX-accredited schools only have to demonstrate that there is a greater likelihood than not that the accused committed an act of misconduct. This can put accused individuals at a disadvantage and make it crucial to have an experienced attorney on their side. A student can sue the school for monetary damages if they fail to respond to these allegations. This type can demand a change in the school's procedure and seek compensation for harm that the accused has suffered.
Defending against a Title IX complaint
Your academic future and reputation are at risk if Title IX has been used to accuse you of sexual misconduct. The vast majority (90%) of American colleges, universities and schools receive federal funds. This means that they are legally required to conduct investigations in the case of complaints and to hold disciplinary hearings.
Title IX allegations are not limited by a statute of limitation, and some claims were filed years after an alleged incident. Title IX hearings are conducted under a standard of preponderance, which is different from the criminal justice system where guilt must be proven beyond a doubt. This means that university panels have to believe that it is more probable than not that there was sexual harassment or violence.
All parties to a Title IX claim have the right, during the investigation and disciplinary hearings, to choose an advisor. The right advisor can help you defend yourself from the serious accusations that you face. Having strong eyewitness testimony and positive character testimony can also be helpful in building your case as you fight for your innocence.