Sexual Misconduct and Title IX at University of North Georgia

If you are accused of sexual misconduct or violating the federal Title IX regulation by the University of North Georgia, it can feel enormously overwhelming. When you're in high school, you never expect your college career to turn out anything but wonderful. But the consequences for these types of violations can have long-lasting, negative impacts on your future. Suddenly, making friends and graduating isn't your only focus – getting to stay in school and keep your reputation intact is.

Your university owes you a specific degree of due diligence, but unfortunately, many schools allow their accused students to fall through the disciplinary cracks. Attorney Joseph D. Lento and the Lento Law Firm have helped hundreds of students across the country who have been accused of sexual misconduct and Title IX violations. You do not have to navigate this experience alone; the Lento Law Firm can help. Call 888-535-3686 today for help.

What Is Title IX?

Title IX is a federal regulation that creates a specific standard that all federally funded colleges and universities must uphold when managing sexual discrimination and sexual violence on their campus. These standards include:

  • Clear and immediate procedures for sexual misconduct allegations
  • Designated personnel to handle instances of sexual violence
  • In Title IX hearings, the standard of evidence should be “more likely than not” or “preponderance of evidence”
  • Both parties involved should have access to the same procedures – advisors, appeals, and presentation of the evidence
  • Retaliation protection

The University of North Georgia forbids discrimination and sexual misconduct, which they define as dating violence, domestic violence, non-consensual sexual contact, non-consensual sexual penetration, sexual exploitation, sexual harassment, and stalking.

What Happens After an Allegation of Sexual Misconduct at the University of North Georgia?

After the complainant reports the alleged incident, the Title IX Coordinator will notify the accused student and begin an initial review to determine whether the conduct in question falls within the scope of Title IX. Once this initial review is complete, the Title IX Coordinator will assign an investigator to interview both the complainant, the accused student, and any relevant witnesses, as well as gather and review any documentary evidence that might be available.

During the investigation, both parties will have a chance to respond to the allegations. If the accused student admits responsibility during this phase, the process will immediately move to the sanctioning phase or be informally resolved through mediation. If the accused student does not admit responsibility, the investigator will complete a formal report and deliver it to both the complainant and the accused student for a response.

Once the parties respond to the investigation report, the Title IX Coordinator will set up a date for the formal hearing process. During this process, both parties will have the opportunity to present their case, as well as witness testimony and documentary evidence the Title IX Coordinator has yet to hear.

At the end of these proceedings, the Title IX Coordinator will make a determination of responsibility and which sanctions are necessary. Possible sanctions include:

  • Expulsion
  • Suspension for a specific time frame or until certain conditions are met, or both
  • Temporary or permanent separation of the parties – changing class assignments, moving dormitories, limiting campus access, no contact orders, etc.
  • Participation in sensitivity training/awareness education programs
  • Participation in alcohol and drug awareness and abuse prevention programs
  • Counseling or mentoring
  • Volunteering or community service
  • Loss of privileges on campus
  • Delaying registration for classes
  • Withholding transcripts
  • Delaying graduation
  • Altering academic requirements around scholarly work or research

Generally, the sanction is meant to match the severity of the incident, but there are certain instances where they don't. If you find your punishment is unfair, you will want to make sure you appeal the decision as soon as you receive it.

Appealing a Sexual Misconduct or Title IX Violation Decision at the University of North Georgia

At the University of North Georgia, either party is allowed to appeal a decision of the Title IX Coordinator. Appeals must be made in writing within five days of the date of the final written decision and can only be made for specific reasons. These reasons include:

  1. To consider new information that was not known earlier but is more than likely to change the decision
  2. To allege a procedural error that may have substantially impacted the hearing
  3. To allege that the finding was inconsistent with the weight of evidence and information

Appeals should be delivered to the President of the University or their designee. The President or their designee will either affirm the original decision and sanction, amend the sanction, or turn the case over to an independent decision-maker for additional review.

It should be noted that the decision of the President or the independent decision-maker is final and cannot be appealed further.

How an Experienced Attorney Advisor Can Help

The consequences of sexual misconduct or Title IX violation decision can last well beyond the confines of your college career. For many students, even if the accusations are proven false, the harm to their reputation is complete and hard to recover from. Teachers and students who have yet to meet you may hear about the incident and make up their minds as to your character.

Additionally, students who are found responsible and are penalized with suspension or expulsion will find that those punishments live on their transcripts forever. If you hope to get into another college or attend graduate school, you will have to explain those notations ad nauseum.

Working with an attorney advisor from the moment you learn of these accusations will not only give you peace of mind but also ensure the best possible outcome for your case, including the mitigation of negative consequences. Attorney Joseph D. Lento and the Lento Law Firm will strategize a defense for you that will help lessen even the severest of consequences. Call 888-535-3686 today to schedule a consultation.

Contact Us Today!

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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.

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.

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