Colleges and universities in Wyoming are subject to Title IX, which prohibits sexual misconduct in higher education if they receive federal funding. This funding gets stripped, though, if they do not adequately investigate allegations, so if you have been accused of violating Title IX, you can expect your school to come down on you, hard.
Having a lawyer as your Title IX advisor can help protect your rights and interests during the investigation.
You Have a Right to a Title IX Advisor
In Wyoming, if you have been accused of violating Title IX's prohibition against sexual misconduct, you have a right to an advisor to help you through the upcoming process. While some people choose a family member of a trusted member of their school's faculty, appointing an attorney as your advisor comes with huge benefits. Lawyers are familiar with the adversarial nature of investigations and hearings, can help you construct an effective defense, and know the ins and outs of the Title IX investigation process.
The Title IX Investigation Process
Each school in Wyoming has its own unique procedure for dealing with Title IX allegations. However, they all following the same basic framework:
- Complaint. Title IX cases all begin with a complaint to the school, alleging that you violated Title IX's prohibition against sexual misconduct in some way.
- No-contact orders filed. After receiving the complaint, most schools respond by filing no-contact orders against you. These prohibit you from having any contact with the person behind the complaint, whatsoever, even if it means changing your housing or classroom assignments. Colleges and universities can and often do impose other "interim" measures such as an "interim suspension", a ban from participation on sports teams, a ban from living on campus, and so forth.
- Investigation. Independent investigators or the school's Title IX officer will then initiate an investigation into the claims made in the complaint. These often lead to an interview with you, as the accused, which can make or break their case. Many schools will determine a respondent's responsibility or lack there at the end of the investigation.
- Hearing. At some schools, the investigation is the lead up to the Title IX hearing. This is where all of the evidence in your case is presented to a panel, and the panel decides if there was a Title IX violation or not.
- Sanctions. If the panel determines that Title IX was violated, it will issue sanctions against you. These penalties can span a wide range, from a warning all the way to an expulsion from school.
- Appeals. If you can point to a defect in the process that led to your sanction, you can appeal the outcome of the hearing. If you just want to appeal the severity or the nature of the sanction that you received, you can limit your appeal to that, as well.
Joseph D. Lento: Wyoming's Title IX Defense Advisor
Joseph D. Lento is a student discipline defense attorney who represents students accused of violating Title IX's prohibitions against sexual misconduct. By having him as your Title IX investigation advisor in Wyoming, he can help you build a case against the charges you are facing, raise an effective defense, and convince the panel that you did not violate Title IX. Contact him online or by phone at 888-535-3686 to get his help as your Title IX advisor.
Wyoming colleges and universities where Joseph D. Lento can help as your or your student's Title IX advisor during investigations (in addition to hearings and appeals) include, but are not limited to, the following schools:
- Casper College
- Central Wyoming College
- College America Cheyenne
- Eastern Wyoming College
- Laramie County Community College
- Northwest College
- Sheridan College
- University of Phoenix Cheyenne Campus
- University of Wyoming
- Western Wyoming Community College
It is critical to make certain the Title IX investigation at your college or university is handled properly and that the accused student's or employee's interests are protected from as early as possible during the sexual misconduct investigative process. One major reason is because even at schools where a finding of responsibility for sexual misconduct charges is made at a hearing, the investigation will set the stage for what the hearing panel is provided prior to a hearing (and what the hearing panel will in large part rely on at a hearing), and at schools where the finding of responsibility is made solely through the investigative process, what takes place during the investigation itself will determine whether the accused is found responsible or not responsible for Title IX charges.
Unfortunately, some students, families, and college employees make the mistake of not taking the necessary precautions as soon as possible when accused of sexual misconduct. Some people will mistakenly believe that if they "just explain what happened," their school will be fair and impartial and will arrive at the truth. In a perfect world this may be the case, but in a perfect world, sexual misconduct and Title IX charges would not exist.
Fighting passionately for the future of his clients at universities and colleges throughout the nation for a decade, Joseph D. Lento knows how important it is to mount the strongest defense because he understands that an accused's academic and professional future is on the line. He does not settle for the easiest outcome, and instead prioritizes his clients' needs and well-being. Joseph Lento is a licensed attorney in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, is admitted as an attorney pro hac vice in state and federal court if needed when representing clients nationwide, and serves as a Title IX advisor and educational consultant to students facing sexual misconduct investigations and disciplinary cases in Wyoming and throughout the nation. Make certain your or your student's interests are protected - Contact National Title IX attorney Joseph D. Lento today.