Title IX Advisor for College Employees - West Virginia

At West Virginia colleges and universities, sexual assault misconduct is an issue taken very seriously. Because of this, violations of federal laws and regulations like Title IX are handled very carefully by schools. The federal government strictly enforces the way that Title IX allegations are handled to help ensure that victims who bring these types of cases against another person are protected and the help that they need.

Unfortunately, college employees sometimes find themselves in situations where they have been falsely accused of sexual harassment or other types of misconduct. Because of the university's determination to handle these types of cases swiftly and firmly, the accused's rights sometimes get lost in the shuffle. The hearings and investigations that are run by colleges and universities in West Virginia are not run the way that similar trials would be held in criminal courts of law. This means that defendants in these cases often do not get their due process.

If you have been accused of a Title IX sexual misconduct allegation, you have the right to have an advisor by your side throughout the entire process. Experienced Title IX attorney Joseph D Lento has years of experience in this area, and his goal is to make sure that you get the defense you need to save your career and good name.

What is Title IX?

Title IX is a federal civil rights law created in 1972 that prohibits sex discrimination at all American schools that accept federal funding. The law applies to K-12 public schools, and it also applies to publicly funded colleges and universities in West Virginia. Private colleges and universities are also under Title IX regulations since they receive federal support in the form of federal funding from funding sources like Pell grants, federal student loans, research grants, and work-study programs.

Universities and colleges in West Virginia that receive federal funding must avoid any type of sexual discrimination in hiring, admissions, athletics, and employment. The US Department of Education has a specific process in place that dictates how schools need to respond to Title IX allegations. That process includes the protections that schools must offer both the respondent and the petitioner. While this looks good on paper, it rarely works out in practice for the defendant.

Because of this, it is extremely critical that you have an experienced attorney advisor by your side if you've been accused of Title IX sexual misconduct or allegations.

Does Title IX Apply to Me?

Title IX applies to both employees and students of Title IX institutions. This list includes administration, professors, trainers, coaches, faculty, resident assistants, and other staff. It also includes part-time as well as full-time employees.

The types of misconduct that Title IX covers include the following:

  • Sexual assault, including non-consensual sexual contact
  • Statutory rape
  • Domestic violence
  • Incest
  • Stalking
  • Intimate partner or dating violence.

What Does the Title IX Process Look Like?

Once an allegation against an employee is received by a West Virginia college or university, the campus administration has to respond to it promptly, swiftly, and firmly. Any suspected allegations must be investigated even if no student or employee actually files an official complaint. Because of this, schools and universities are often extremely aggressive when it comes to investigating allegations. They do this to make sure that they don't end up on the wrong side of Title IX law or regulations. Unfortunately, the defendant often ends up losing their due process rights.

The Title IX action begins when a complaint is filed with your West Virginia college or university's Title IX coordinator. Once the coordinator reviews the details of the complaint, they have to decide whether or not there are sufficient grounds to pursue an action against you. If they decide that there are sufficient grounds, they will notify you and any other respondents. The notification will include details about the complaint that's been filed against you, any Title IX regulations that were broken, and the complainant's name. You will also be informed of your rights, and you'll also be told of any possible sanctions that could happen as a result of the investigation. They will also let you know that if you decide not to take part in the investigation, it will proceed without you.

The Title IX coordinator will then appoint an investigator to meet with both you and the accuser. The investigator will review evidence and witnesses from both sides. At this point, you need to retain a Title IX advisor if you have not gotten one already so that you are protected.

When the investigation is complete, the investigator will create a report and send it to both you and the petitioner. You'll both have a chance to review it and make any changes before the final document is sent to the Title IX coordinator.

At this point, the Title IX action transfers over to the hearing phase. At the hearing, you'll have the right to be represented by an attorney advisor. You and your attorney advisor will both have the opportunity to cross-examine witnesses, review evidence, and introduce evidence of your own and your own witnesses.

At this point, the panel will determine whether or not you are guilty. In order to find you guilty, they must find that you are responsible by a "preponderance of the evidence" measure. One issue with Title IX hearings is that this measure is a lot weaker than the "beyond reasonable doubt'' measure that criminal courts use.

Once a decision is in, both you and the petitioner can appeal the decision within 10 days. You only file an appeal if a mistake had been made in Title IX law, if there was bias on the part of one of the people making a decision in the case, or if there is new evidence.

How Can an Advisor Help?

An advisor will make sure that you have a strategic, well-planned defense strategy when fighting the Title IX allegations against you. They'll help you draft strong opening and closing statements. They'll make sure that you're comfortable responding to uncomfortable questions. They'll make sure that you're treated in a fair and equitable manner during the trial. And most importantly, they'll provide you with much-needed emotional support and guidance as you go through the process

Work With an Attorney

If you have been accused of Title IX sexual misconduct allegations at a West Virginia college or university, getting experienced legal help is critical. If you end up being found guilty, you could lose your job. That mark will stay on your record wherever you go, putting an end to your educational career.

Joseph D. Lento and the team of experienced academic advisors at the Lento Law Firm have years of experience defending students who have been accused of Title IX allegations in West Virginia. They know exactly what to do with each person's individual case, and they will do everything in their power to make sure that you have the best defense possible.

Call the Lento Law Firm at 888-535-3686 to discuss your options.

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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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