Catfishing Your Classmate: Can You Get in Trouble?

Posted by Joseph D. Lento | Jul 12, 2022 | 0 Comments

The term catfishing became popular in 2010 with the release of a movie of the same name. The idea is that a person enters into some kind of relationship with someone they have met over the internet. When they finally meet the other person, they have completely different looks, voice, personality, then the person they pretended to be online. An extreme example is a high school male chatting online with a high school female, only to find out she's actually a sixty-year-old man.

Catfishing sounds like a fun prank to play on a friend or classmate, but the reality is, it can very easily get out of hand. Whether or not you can get in trouble for it will depend on the severity of the catfishing done. For instance, if you are pretending to be someone of the same age as your victim and you convince them to send you money, you could get into trouble. But if you are just conversing with them via text, you probably won't.

Possible Consequences for Catfishing a Classmate

Every university has a specific code of conduct they expect their students to follow. While each code of conduct is different, they generally explain what actions are off-limits, this includes actions that would disrupt the academic environment. For instance, at Ball State, students cannot create an intimidating or hostile environment. If you are catfishing a classmate in order to ridicule and bully them later, you would be violating this part of the code of conduct.

Students who violate the code of conduct can be subject to disciplinary measures. Disciplinary measures include anything from a written warning to suspension or expulsion. And remember, if you are suspended or expelled, those sanctions are placed on your final transcripts – meaning you will need to explain them to any future admissions representative if you hope to continue your education elsewhere.

How an Attorney-Advisor Can Help

Attorney Joseph D. Lento and Lento Law Firm have spent years helping hundreds of college students across the country navigate disciplinary hearings. They will work tirelessly to ensure your rights are upheld so that you do not fall through the adjudication cracks. If you or someone you love is facing charges for violating the code of conduct in any way, call Lento Law Firm today. Attorney Lento will gather witnesses and evidence to create a strong defense on your behalf. He knows that the best defense is a good offense.

Call 888-535-3686 today or schedule a consultation online. You do not need to navigate these proceedings alone. Attorney Lento can help.

About the Author

Joseph D. Lento

"I pride myself on having heart and driving hard to get results!" Attorney Joseph D. Lento passionately fights for the futures of his clients nationwide. Attorney Lento and his team represent students and others in disciplinary cases and various other proceedings at colleges and universities across the United States. Attorney Lento has helped countless students, professors, and others in academia at more than a thousand colleges and universities across the United States, and when necessary, he and his team have sought justice on behalf of clients in courts across the nation. He does not settle for the easiest outcome, and instead prioritizes his clients' needs and well-being. Joseph D. Lento is licensed in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York, is admitted pro hac vice as needed nationwide, and he can help you or your student address any school-related issue or concern anywhere in the United States.


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If you, or your student, are facing any kind of disciplinary action, or other negative academic sanction, and are having feelings of uncertainty and anxiety for what the future may hold, contact the Lento Law Firm today, and let us help secure your academic career.

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