Controversy over Yale Law Professor Suspended for Sexual Misconduct

Posted by Joseph D. Lento | Dec 03, 2020 | 0 Comments

Yale University has responded to criticisms surrounding the two-year suspension of Yale law professor Jed Rubenfeld amidst sexual misconduct allegations.

New York magazine first reported Rubenfeld's suspension, confirming that Yale had suspended Rubenfeld from the faculty for two years.

Rubenfeld “absolutely and unequivocally” denied the allegations.

The Yale Law Women and Title IX Working Group opposed the measures and urged the university to bar Rubenfeld from the campus permanently.

His case comes at a time of particular scrutiny for colleges, with many institutions having revised sexual misconduct policies hastily over the summer to meet new federal guidelines.

The Rubenfeld Case

Rubenfeld had been a faculty member for 30 years when Yale University opened inquiries against him in 2018. The allegations dated back many years and included verbal harassment, unwanted touching, and attempted kissing.

A tenured law professor, Rubenfeld had previously written about the unreliability of campus sexual misconduct procedures, including in TIME and the New York Times.

Back in August, according to New York Magazine, Yale University Provost informed the faculty that Rubenfeld would face a two-year suspension effective immediately. Yale then swiftly removed him from the faculty website.

On his return, the university will bar Rubenfeld from teaching “small group or required courses” and restrict him from engaging with students in social gatherings.

Opposition and Yale University Response

Last month, students from the Yale Law School Title IX Working Group and Yale Law Women sent Yale University President Peter Salovey a report criticizing the university's handling of the case. They demanded Rubenfeld's permanent expulsion from the faculty and release of the investigation's findings. The group claimed that the case had exposed fault-lines in Yale's sexual misconduct policy and argued for a policy change ensuring the university would provide pro bono legal representation to alleged victims in Title IX investigations.

Salovey has since responded, maintaining Yale's position on sexual misconduct policy and the outcome of the Rubenfeld investigation. Salovey added that after considering the suggestion of providing complainants with lawyers, the university would continue to support students with advisers from the Title IX Office with the promise of a review into policy later down the line.

Sexual Misconduct Policy on Campus

Sexual harassment is strictly prohibited in educational institutions under Title IX, and schools must abide by federal guidelines for investigating offenses that fall under Title IX legislation. Schools also have their codes of conduct, under which students, staff, professors, and other faculty members may face additional sanctions. New Title IX guidelines brought in this year impact how schools respond to allegations. In any case, faculty members are held to the same evidentiary standards in sexual misconduct proceedings as students.

Do You Face Unfounded Allegations?

If you have been accused of sexual misconduct, contact attorney Joseph D. Lento. The Lento Law Firm will work to protect your rights and your future. Call the Lento Law Firm today at 888-535-3686 for a consultation.

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.


There are no comments for this post. Be the first and Add your Comment below.

Leave a Comment

Contact Us Today!


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.

This website was created only for general information purposes. It is not intended to be construed as legal advice for any situation. Only a direct consultation with a licensed Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York attorney can provide you with formal legal counsel based on the unique details surrounding your situation. The pages on this website may contain links and contact information for third party organizations - the Lento Law Firm does not necessarily endorse these organizations nor the materials contained on their website. In Pennsylvania, Attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout Pennsylvania's 67 counties, including, but not limited to Philadelphia, Allegheny, Berks, Bucks, Carbon, Chester, Dauphin, Delaware, Lancaster, Lehigh, Monroe, Montgomery, Northampton, Schuylkill, and York County. In New Jersey, attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout New Jersey's 21 counties: Atlantic, Bergen, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Essex, Gloucester, Hudson, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Salem, Somerset, Sussex, Union, and Warren County, In New York, Attorney Joseph D. Lento represents clients throughout New York's 62 counties. Outside of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York, unless attorney Joseph D. Lento is admitted pro hac vice if needed, his assistance may not constitute legal advice or the practice of law. The decision to hire an attorney in Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania counties, New Jersey, New York, or nationwide should not be made solely on the strength of an advertisement. We invite you to contact the Lento Law Firm directly to inquire about our specific qualifications and experience. Communicating with the Lento Law Firm by email, phone, or fax does not create an attorney-client relationship. The Lento Law Firm will serve as your official legal counsel upon a formal agreement from both parties. Any information sent to the Lento Law Firm before an attorney-client relationship is made is done on a non-confidential basis.