Student Defense: Cleveland-Marshall College of Law

Tracing its roots to Cleveland Law School, the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law is Ohio's first law school, established in 1897. The school is an affiliate of Cleveland State University. It offers multiple degree options like the Juris Doctor (JD) and Master of Laws (L.L.M). Today, Cleveland Marshall enjoys a nationwide reputation for its programs and notable alumni. To maintain its reputation and appeal to new students, the college expects students to maintain the highest standards of academic integrity.

Cleveland-Marshall College of Law prioritizes ethical conduct to encourage students to maintain the integrity of their future legal profession. If students commit academic misconduct violations and go against the honor code, they must attend a hearing. If the sanctions involve suspension or permanent dismissal, law students may not find another program to re-enroll. In other cases, a notation on their transcript may pose career challenges. Without the help of an attorney-advisor, students risk more than losing a few months of attendance – they may have to seek another degree.

Academic Misconduct and Honor Code

The Cleveland-Marshall College of Law has a different Honor Code than Cleveland University. The code outlines what constitutes a violation of academic integrity and describes the adjudication process. The procedures and penalties listed in the code do not preempt other methods that the University may implement to deal with an honor code violation. The following actions are violations of the policy:

  • Cheating: Cheating involves the student using any unauthorized means to gain an unfair advantage in their education. Some examples of this act include giving and receiving assistance during a test, copying exam questions and giving them to others, and violating regulations imposed by professors.
  • Plagiarism: Law students that use the work of others without citing their sources commit plagiarism. Another example is when students submit a paper to receive credit for solo work despite other students contributing.
  • Unauthorized assistance: Law students may not knowingly provide unauthorized help to their peers during an academic exercise. Examples include writing an assignment for other students or giving them a copy of a test.
  • Misuse of prior work: Students may not use work completed for another class and submit it as new work.
  • Compromising anonymous grading: If students submit work pending anonymous grading, they must not deliberate actions that compromise their anonymity.
  • Falsifying Documents: The process of knowingly falsifying documents such as grades, transcripts, and other materials is an egregious violation of academic integrity.

Any member of Cleveland University may file a report if they suspect that a student committed an act of academic misconduct. Once the Dean or a designated administrative officer receives the information, they review it to determine probable cause to pursue a case.

Hearing Process

Once the Dean or designated administrative officer receives a report, they schedule a preliminary meeting with the student to discuss the matter. If the student does not admit to wrongdoing, the Honor Council appoints an investigative team. The team determines whether the issue warrants a hearing. If it does, the student has the right to retain the assistance of an attorney-advisor.

During the hearing, the student presents all information and witnesses needed to make their case. The outcome involves the student's current violations and any previous incidents during their time at Cleveland-Marshall College of Law. After the conclusion of the hearing, the board members deliberate and recommend appropriate sanctions to the Hearing Council. The more violations committed by a student, the more likely they will face harsher sanctions.


Students may appeal the recommendation of a sanction to the faculty. However, there are specific requirements to challenge the decision. The exceptions include compelling circumstances, a referral from the faculty, or the emergence of new evidence that may alter the case outcome.

If the appeal meets the above criteria, the student and their attorney-advisor must attend a faculty meeting. Students/advisors can make a brief statement and answer any faculty questions. Faculty members then vote on the matter after considering the information and decide whether to continue with the recommended sanctions or amend them. Since Cleveland-Marshall allows students to have an attorney-advisor present, there is a chance of a better case outcome than them representing themselves.


The Honor Code lists multiple sanctions that range in severity from a reprimand to a permanent discharge. Although sanctions don't necessarily mean expulsion, even a temporary suspension or a note on the student's transcript wreak havoc on their career opportunities and graduation prospects. The sanctions include:

  • A written reprimand
  • Probationary status with a loss of campus privileges
  • Receiving no credit for work completed through academic misconduct
  • Withdrawal of academic credit
  • Change of grade or failure of course
  • Restricted access to the Law School
  • Partial or total revocation of a scholarship
  • Suspension
  • Permanent expulsion

Despite this exhaustive list of sanctions, a hearing does not always have to lead to harsh penalties. Regardless of the accusation, all students deserve a chance to defend themselves. With an attorney-advisor by their side, they may have a higher chance of success.

Hiring an Attorney-Advisor

If you face academic misconduct violations at Cleveland-Marshall College of Law, you don't have to face the issue alone. Attorney-advisor Joseph D. Lento has extensive experience working with law students nationwide, specializing in student defense. Whether the problem was caused by an honest mistake blown out of proportion or a poor decision, there should be reasonableness to the outcome, and working with attorney Joseph D. Lento can greatly increases the likelihood of a favorable case outcome.

Since Cleveland-Marshall allows students to have an attorney-advisor present, it facilitates the negotiation process. It helps ensure that the process is fair and transparent. You don't have to wait until it's too late to file an appeal – the earlier you tackle the issue, the better your chances are of success.

Don't lose years of hard work and effort because of an academic misconduct violation at Cleveland Marshall College of Law. Call the Lento Law Firm today at 888-535-3686 for more information about navigating your case.

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.

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