Title IX compliance through disciplinary actions is required based on federal guidelines for most colleges and universities. Students who are alleged to have violated these provisions, such as through acts of sexual misconduct, should expect that campus administrators will be investigating. The investigation culminates in a campus disciplinary hearing where the accused may answer the claims. Members of the university administration are supposed to maintain the rights of all parties involved equitably; however, often times those accused find that this does not occur. The sanctions and penalties that may potentially be imposed may be harsh. Students facing these types of allegations should strongly consider speaking with legal counsel. Joseph D. Lento is an experienced attorney that represents students aggressively.
Understanding Title IX
Colleges and universities who fail to maintain Title IX compliance may risk losing access to federal education funds. Incidents reported that involve sexual harassment, assault, or similar types of misconduct are to be promptly investigated by designated members of the campus administration. If their investigation suggests that the allegations have merit, the institution will begin their established disciplinary procedures. Federal oversight of Title IX is conducted by the Office for Civil Rights--a part of the U.S. Department of Education.
Title IX Procedural Expectations
Colleges and universities have some latitude in how they structure their Title IX disciplinary process. There are some guidelines that must be adhered to as follows:
- Policies are to be implemented in writing and accessible to all students
- Guidelines pertain to allegations of sexually-based misconduct against students, staff, and others on the campus
- Parties may submit evidence and witness testimony
- The process must be conducted in a “reasonably prompt time frame”
- All parties must be formally notified of rulings concurrently
What Penalties or Sanctions May Be Imposed?
Sanctions and penalties are designed to effectively enforce and deter misconduct. All potential sanctions that a school may impose are documented in their annual safety report. Common sanctions include imposing a disciplinary probation period, a suspension, or dismissal from the university. Appealing an adverse outcome may be an option, but the steps must be taken to win the Title IX hearing so that an appeal is not necessary.
Legal Defense Overview
Students who are facing allegations of violating Title IX should consult with an attorney that is familiar with this area of practice. This is important because preparation is critical. Your attorney will assess the individual circumstances and devise a comprehensive strategy. This may include gathering evidence that supports your defense such as from witnesses or compiling expert testimony. This preparation will largely focus on drafting impactful statements and responses to the questions that are likely to be asked at the hearing.
How Will My Attorney Assist at the Hearing?
Your attorney will make certain you are organized and comfortable when delivering your opening and closing statements. It is important that your case is presented in a manner that demonstrates confidence and conviction. Depending on the format, hearings may allow for cross-examination. Your attorney will strive to ensure that you are treated fairly throughout the proceedings and are able to respond well when unforeseen developments occur.
Attorney Defends Students in Title IX Actions in Hawaii
Joseph D. Lento and the Lento Law Firm are no strangers to Title IX campus disciplinary proceedings in Hawaii and nationwide. It is best for you to proactively address the allegations and protect your future interests. For a case evaluation, contact the office today at (888) 535-3686.
Hawaii colleges and universities where Joseph D. Lento can help as your or your student's Title IX advisor during hearings, in addition to investigations and appeals, include, but are not limited to, the following schools:
- Argosy University Hawaii
- Brigham Young University Hawaii
- Chaminade University of Honolulu
- Hawaii Community College
- Hawaii Pacific University
- Heald College Honolulu
- Honolulu Community College
- Kapiolani Community College
- Kauai Community College
- Leeward Community College
- New Hope Christian College
- Remington College Honolulu Campus
- University of Hawaii at Hilo
- University of Hawaii at Manoa
- University of Hawaii Maui College
- University of Hawaii West Oahu
- University of Phoenix Hawaii Campus
- Windward Community College
Winning a Title IX hearing can mean the difference between achieving one's academic and professional goals or having these goals upended. When accused of sexual misconduct, it is critical to not take the matter lightly and to instead vigorously defend against the allegations. Title IX cases can be won, and Joseph D. Lento has a decade of experience passionately fighting for the future of his clients at colleges and universities throughout the nation and winning. 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 Title IX disciplinary cases in Hawaii and throughout the nation. Make certain your or your student's interests are protected - Contact National Title IX attorney Joseph D. Lento today.