When college or university administrators receive a complaint that relates to a violation of Title IX rules they will promptly begin an inquiry. These allegations commonly are acts of sexual misconduct. If the university determines that sufficient evidence supports the allegation they may progress toward holding a disciplinary hearing. During this hearing, an accused student has the chance to challenge the claims. A fundamental aspect of the Title IX investigative process is that all parties are to be fairly treated. Often the accused students feel that the administration overlooks their rights to due process. Students facing such allegations are encouraged to retain legal counsel. Joseph D. Lento is a seasoned attorney in this area of practice and will aggressively defend the accused.
What is the Purpose of Title IX?
Common complaints that are categorized under Title IX include those of sexual harassment, assault, or other related forms of misconduct. These claims are promptly investigated by designated members of the administration. Institutions of higher learning are unlikely to risk losing their access to much needed federal education funds for not complying with the provisions. If their initial inquiry reveals that the allegations have merit, the administration will begin their formal disciplinary procedures. The U.S. Department of Education's division of the Office of Civil Rights is responsible for Title IX oversight.
There are some basic written guidelines outlining the disciplinary process at colleges and universities. Some of these include the following:
- The written provisions (in their entirety) should be available to all students
- The guidelines pertain to allegations of sexual misconduct against students, staff, and others on the campus
- All of the parties involved may present evidence and relevant witness testimony
- The administration has a responsibility to ensure the process is conducted in a “reasonably prompt time frame”
- All parties must be formally notified of rulings concurrently
All of the potential sanctions and penalties that the administration may impose are documented in their annually published safety report. Common sanctions include imposing a disciplinary period of probation, a suspension, or dismissal from the university. Hearings can be won when the necessary steps are taken as early as possible, but at times an appeal of an adverse outcome may be necessary. An experienced advisor can help draft the strongest and most effective appeal when an appeal is necessary.
Why Retain an Attorney?
Those accused should consider retaining legal assistance this is familiar with these types of disciplinary processes. Your attorney will review the details of the complaint and all relevant evidence to devise a comprehensive strategy for your defense. Your attorney may also enter negotiations with members of the Title IX administration anytime during the process. Other potential evidence that supports your defense may include witness or expert testimony. With help from an attorney, you may be better prepared to confidently respond to the questions that are likely to be asked at the hearing.
Attorney Role at the Hearing
Your attorney will assist you with key aspects of hearing preparation. It is critical that you deliver an impactful opening and closing statement. Based on the potential format of the hearing, there may be an opportunity to cross-examine adverse parties. Your lawyer will seek to ensure that you are treated fairly throughout the proceedings and also should enable you to better respond when unforeseen developments occur.
Lawyer for Students in Mississippi in Title IX Disciplinary Actions
Are you a student that is currently facing allegations of misconduct that violate Title IX provisions? Because of the potential for long-term ramifications, it is best to have sound legal assistance. Joseph D. Lento and the Lento Law Firm knows how to effectively challenge such claims. Contact the office today for a consultation at (888) 535-3686.
- Alcorn State University
- Antonelli College Hattiesburg
- Antonelli College Jackson
- Belhaven University
- Blue Cliff College Gulfport
- Blue Mountain College
- Coahoma Community College
- Copiah Lincoln Community College
- Delta State University
- East Central Community College
- East Mississippi Community College
- Hinds Community College
- Holmes Community College
- Itawamba Community College
- ITT Technical Institute Madison
- Jackson State University
- Jones County Junior College
- Meridian Community College
- Miller Motte Technical College Gulfport
- Millsaps College
- Mississippi College
- Mississippi Delta Community College
- Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College
- Mississippi State University
- Mississippi University for Women
- Mississippi Valley State University
- Northeast Mississippi Community College
- Northwest Mississippi Community College
- Pearl River Community College
- Rust College
- Southeastern Baptist College
- Southwest Mississippi Community College
- Tougaloo College
- University of Mississippi
- University of Phoenix Jackson Campus
- University of Southern Mississippi
- Virginia College Biloxi
- William Carey University
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 disciplinary cases in Mississippi and throughout the nation. Make certain your or your student's interests are protected - Contact National Title IX attorney Joseph D. Lento today.