Title IX Advisor for Hearings in West Virginia

The U.S. Department of Education implemented Title IX rules prohibiting sexually-based discrimination at U.S. educational institutions in 1972. Allegations, such as those of sexual misconduct, are investigated by designated members of the administration. How does the government enforce Title IX compliance? Institutions are required to comply with these guidelines in order to continue to qualify for federal education funding. These types of claims are increasingly common, as Harvard University experienced a 7% increase in 2018. If the evidence has merit, a hearing is conducted where the accused may challenge the allegations. Violators may face penalties such as suspension or expulsion that can alter a student's future plans; therefore, those accused are encouraged to speak with legal counsel. Attorney Joseph D. Lento has a wealth of experience in representing those in need of student disciplinary defense.

Hearing Format

Colleges and universities each have some established format for handling hearings. Keep in mind that these hearings are not formal legal proceedings such as those in criminal or civil courts. Students may be accompanied by an advisor in these hearings for support. Those accused who choose to have an attorney function in this role can expect significant benefits. Federal regulators have recently proposed a host of changes to Title IX guidelines, many of which are expected to be implemented in 2019.

Burden of Proof

When the original provisions were implemented they did not specifically state what the burden of proof should be for proving allegations. Currently, the standard employed is that allegations must be proven by a “preponderance of the evidence”. The recently proposed federal changes suggest that institutions could consider using a “clear and convincing evidence” standard. Both of these options are a less difficult standard to satisfy compared to the “beyond a reasonable doubt” standard used in criminal cases.

Why Have an Attorney?

Legal representation is likely to be a tremendous help to your defense including:

  • Formulation of a comprehensive strategy of defense including:
    • Excellent opening and closing statements
    • Confidently responding to questions that you are likely to be asked
    • Gathering strong evidence and possible expert testimony with supporting documentation
  • Ensuring that the student is treated fairly in the process
  • A better capacity to respond to unforeseen developments that may surface during the hearing
  • Potential opportunities for cross-examination of accusers and witnesses (when/if applicable)
  • Proper leadership and emotional support
  • Your attorney may enter negotiations with Title IX coordinators or other campus administrators at any time during the process
  • The attorney will keep abreast on the proposed modifications to the guidelines

Assistance With an Appeal

Some of those initially facing allegations fail to understand the potential consequences of sanctions and attempt to defend these claims themselves. The best plan of action is to retain legal assistance immediately. Those who are unsuccessful do have the option of appealing. The process for an appeal differs according to the school's written procedures. Having an attorney assist you with drafting a highly impactful document is critical. One key problem with the appeals process at most institutions is that the window of time for filing is usually very short.

West Virginia Title IX Disciplinary Defense Lawyer

Joseph D. Lento and the Lento Law Firm have expertise in defending Title IX disciplinary matters. They will analyze the evidence and circumstances associated with the allegations and assist you in achieving a favorable outcome. Students in West Virginia in need of these services are encouraged to contact the office for a consultation at (888) 535-3686.

  • Alderson Broaddus College
  • American Public University System
  • Appalachian Bible College
  • Bethany College
  • Blue Ridge Community and Technical College
  • Bluefield State College
  • Bridgemont Community and Technical College
  • Concord University
  • Davis & Elkins College
  • Eastern West Virginia Community and Technical College
  • Fairmont State University
  • Glenville State College
  • Huntington Junior College
  • ITT Technical Institute Huntington
  • Kanawha Valley Community and Technical College
  • Marshall University
  • Mountain State College
  • Mountain State University
  • Mountwest Community and Technical College
  • New River Community and Technical College
  • Ohio Valley University
  • Pierpont Community and Technical College
  • Potomac State College of West Virginia University
  • Salem International University
  • Shepherd University
  • Southern West Virginia Community and Technical College
  • University of Charleston
  • Valley College Beckley
  • Valley College Martinsburg
  • Valley College Princeton
  • West Liberty University
  • West Virginia Business College Wheeling
  • West Virginia Junior College Bridgeport
  • West Virginia Junior College Charleston
  • West Virginia Junior College Morgantown
  • West Virginia Northern Community College
  • West Virginia State University
  • West Virginia University
  • West Virginia University at Parkersburg
  • West Virginia University Institute of Technology
  • West Virginia Wesleyan College
  • Wheeling Jesuit 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 West Virginia and throughout the nation. Make certain your or your student's interests are protected - Contact National Title IX attorney Joseph D. Lento today.