In the event that a student is found “responsible” for a Title IX violation at a Maine college or university, he or she has the right to challenge this decision by appealing.
A brief explanation of why a student may be involved in such an ordeal can help with prospective steps forward - Title IX is a federal civil rights law that has been implemented and enforced in the majority of Maine schools, including the state's colleges and universities. It bans any form of gender-based discrimination on campuses, especially prohibiting sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating violence, and other discriminatory acts.
Title IX also requires school in Maine, and across the country for that matter, to take immediate action upon notification of complaints involving sexual misconduct. If a student is found “responsible” for a violation after the Title IX disciplinary process has run its course, as noted, he or she has the right to challenge this decision by means of an appeal.
Your Right to Appeal
The right to appeal is the single most important right entitled to student respondents. Much like the appellate process in the criminal justice system, it is designed to keep authorities accountable for the decisions they make. Many students can attest to the fact that school authorities and institutions themselves are not infallible. These people are capable of making mistakes that will have lasting adverse effects on the academic and professional careers of innocent students. This is especially true when it comes to Title IX. Title IX sanctions are known to be incredibly harsh, result in a semester or year-long suspension, program withdrawals, and expulsion. With such serious repercussions, students respondents found “responsible” for a violation of this nature should ensure that the decisions made in their cases are fair and founded. The only way they can effectively do so is by submitting an appeal.
Inquiries about the appellate process and your next steps when approaching an unfavorable Title IX case outcome should be discussed with an attorney. Legal professional Joseph D. Lento can help you craft a compelling and effective appeal.
Grounds for an Appeal
Unfortunately, a school will only consider an appeal for review if it is based on certain grounds. These grounds must be strictly related to discrepancies, issues, and inconsistencies in the Title IX resolution process. Therefore, an appeal is not the time to try to prove your innocence. The decision to appeal a determination and/or sanction will ultimately boil down to how well you and your advisor can establish at least one of the following four grounds:
- Procedural error: a vital mistake was made at some point in the Title IX resolution process, and it influenced the outcome of a determination and/or sanction.
- New evidence available: evidence that supports the case of a respondent, and would have had a substantial impact on a case outcome became available after a hearing.
- A violation of due process rights: an institution robbed a student of their entitled rights under Title IX and school policy.
- Disproportionate sanction: the sanction(s) imposed are unduly disproportionate to the alleged violation.
Each school has its own unique appeal content and submission guidelines. To identify important deadlines, application information, and other relevant information, check your school's student handbook or code of conduct. If your appeal is not submitted in a timely manner or is not considered substantively eligible in the eyes of school, the original determination and sanction will stand.
Maine Title IX Appeal Advisor
If you are a student attending a Maine college or university with intentions of appealing a Title IX case outcome, you need the help of a skilled student defense attorney. Legal professional Joseph D. Lento has helped students in this situation clear their name, and overturn their finding by helping them submit a compelling appeal. He has the expertise, skill, and experience to help you do the same. Contact him online or give him a call at 888-535-3686 for assistance.
- Bates College
- Bowdoin College
- Central Maine Community College
- Central Maine Medical Center College of Nursing and Health Professions
- Colby College
- College of the Atlantic
- Eastern Maine Community College
- Husson University
- Kaplan University Maine Campus
- Kennebec Valley Community College
- Landing School of Boat Building and Design
- Maine College of Art
- Maine Maritime Academy
- New England School of Communications
- Northern Maine Community College
- Saint Joseph's College of Maine
- Southern Maine Community College
- Thomas College
- Unity College
- University of Maine
- University of Maine at Augusta
- University of Maine at Farmington
- University of Maine at Fort Kent
- University of Maine at Machias
- University of Maine at Presque Isle
- University of New England
- University of Southern Maine
- Washington County Community College
- York County Community College
A Title IX finding of responsibility can change an accused student's life if not properly addressed and appealed, and Joseph D. Lento has a decade of experience passionately fighting for the futures of his clients at universities and colleges throughout the nation. 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 disciplinary cases in Maine and throughout the nation. Make certain your or your student's interests are protected - Contact National Title IX attorney Joseph D. Lento today.