The federal government initiated a set of guidelines known as Title IX in efforts to protect the civil rights of those attending schools. This includes the many colleges and universities, which are required to maintain compliance for eligibility to continued federal funding. Institutions designate a coordinator who will investigate complaints that violate Title IX such as those of sexual misconduct. These investigations lead to a hearing where a ruling is made. Based on these findings disciplinary sanctions may be imposed on the accused. Violators that disagree with the school's ruling may approach the Office of Civil Rights (OCR) with a formal complaint requesting that they review the matter as an independent third-party. Those pursuing this course of action are encouraged to do so with assistance from experienced legal counsel such as the Lento Law Firm, which has an excellent track record of defending students facing such disciplinary action.
University of North Dakota Implements New Title IX Compliance Model
Donna Smith, the director of the school's Equal Employment Opportunity & Title IX efforts, has announced a newly implemented model for compliance at the University of North Dakota (UND). The Committee for Sexual Violence Prevention & Response established the program based on a “Four Corners” model that is composed of the following subcommittees:
- Organization and Management Subcommittee
- Investigation, Discipline and Grievance Procedures Subcommittee
- Victim and Other Impacted Individual Assistance Subcommittee
- Campus Culture and Climate Subcommittee
The four committees work collectively to support UND's commitment to preventing sexually-based discrimination and the development of their plan for managing incidents of sexual violence.
Title IX Violations in North Dakota
The Federal Code of Regulations contains the provisions that guide Title IX. The U.S. Department of Education has continued these efforts that were originally put in place in 1972. Some of the other related civil rights actions that they are responsible for include:
- Title VI: The Civil Rights Act of 1964 regarding discrimination based on race, color, and origin
- Section 504: The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 regarding discrimination based on disabilities
- Title II: The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990
- The Age Discrimination Act of 1975
Campus Investigation & Appeals Process
Colleges and universities have a process of investigating complaints regarding sexual harassment and assault. Sanctions that are commonly imposed on violators range from periods of suspension to expulsion. Students who are not successful in the defense of such allegations may appeal the ruling through the grievance process that is outlined in the school's disciplinary guidelines.
Filing an OCR Complaint
If the student is unable to have the ruling reversed through the appeals process they will be subject to the often harsh sanctions and penalties imposed. At this point, the accused may consider filing a formal complaint with the OCR, which must be completed prior to the agency deadline. It is highly recommended that individuals considering this course of action do so with assistance from an experienced lawyer that will draft a highly effective complaint.
Student Discipline Defense Lawyer in North Dakota
Those accused of violations of sexual misconduct often find that the school's process of investigating the allegations fails to sufficiently consider their rights. The disciplinary penalties imposed can have long-term ramifications. Attorney Joseph D. Lento is well versed in the practice of student disciplinary defense and will be sure that your best interests are protected. Contact the office today at (888) 535-3686.
- Bismarck State College
- Cankdeska Cikana Community College
- Dakota College at Bottineau
- Dickinson State University
- Fort Berthold Community College
- Jamestown College
- Lake Region State College
- Mayville State University
- Minot State University
- North Dakota State College of Science
- North Dakota State University Main Campus
- Sitting Bull College
- Trinity Bible College
- Turtle Mountain Community College
- United Tribes Technical College
- University of Mary
- University of North Dakota
- Valley City State University
- Williston State College
Students and parents at times do not realize until after a finding of responsibility and the imposition of adverse sanctions that sexual misconduct allegations at college can result in severe consequences academically and professionally and in the short and long-term. The earlier the necessary steps are taken to address a Title IX case, the better, because these are cases that can be won at the school-level. There are times, however, that the help of the Department of Education Office of Civil Rights (DOE-OCR) is needed and Joseph D. Lento has a decade of experience passionately fighting for the futures of his clients at colleges and universities throughout the nation and has helped many clients seek recourse with the DOE-OCR. 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 who helps students in North Dakota with DOE-OCR Title IX complaints, 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 to students facing disciplinary cases in North Dakota and throughout the nation. Make certain your or your student's interests are protected - Contact National Title IX attorney Joseph D. Lento today.