Have you been accused of sexual misconduct in a Title IX disciplinary proceeding in your college or university? If so, you face a complex process to defend yourself against the charges. The accusation can have serious negative consequences. You can be suspended or expelled from your school. Also, when the school lets you graduate, your transcript can have a liability, making it hard to transfer to another school, get admitted to a graduate school, or land a job.
Due to the high stakes involved in the process, you must hire a nationwide Title IX defense lawyer immediately after you get a complaint notice. Your attorney can evaluate the procedures of the school when it comes to giving you the defense rights you deserve. Also, they can determine possible bias on the investigators or hearing panel and ensure you are given due process. Retaining legal counsel when dealing with a Title IX complaint offers the following benefits:
They Know How to Defeat Your School’s Liability Standard
On-campus disciplinary procedures usually involve a lower proof standard for liability than criminal cases. The majority of schools adopt a preponderance of the evidence standard. Thus, there should only be a 50% possibility that the alleged sexual misconduct happened and the accused can be found responsible for the alleged violation. Also, the student can be sanctioned. An experienced lawyer has knowledge of evidence, cross-examination, and testimony and can help you present a case that can defeat your school’s standard for liability.
They Know the Appeal Procedures Quite Well
Most colleges and universities permit an accused student to appeal a decision made by their disciplinary board. If you fail to defend yourself during the initial disciplinary hearing, the accuser can get another chance to implicate you, risking double jeopardy. Your attorney can protect you on the appeal and file your own appeal when the hearing panel determined responsibility.
But, keep in mind that there is a limit to the amount of time you can file an appeal. In fact, it can be as little as a few days following the panel’s decision. Also, there are limitations to the grounds for an appeal. Your lawyer can prepare an appeal brief for you, along with a brief to oppose the appeal of the complainant.
If your appeal won’t succeed, your attorney can file a Title IX lawsuit against your college to reverse its findings, eliminate the sanctions, and expunge notation of the complaint from our transcript and academic records. Your lawyer knows that courts can reverse negative findings and sanctions when the school fails to give fundamental due process, deny you access to the witnesses or materials of the accuser, or follow its disciplinary hearing procedures.