Although many universities claim to take Title IX investigations seriously, many others fail to handle these cases properly. Institutional bias and discrimination can get in the way, causing campus administrators to break their own regulations on Title IX.
In a recent case at the University of Southern California, a former student's Title IX debacle shows how negligence can cause damage to both accuser and the accused.
Mishandled Title IX Case at USC
A former USC student filed a lawsuit against USC, alleging that the university mishandled her rape investigation, which was conducted by the Title IX Office. The plaintiff claims that USC discriminated against her and violated Title IX before and after her assault. The investigation by the Title IX Office concluded in favor of the alleged rapist.
The lawsuit maintains that USC officials, including the former Title IX investigator, ignored university policy, and acted in favor of the alleged perpetrator. It also claims that the accused's attorney was allowed to see the accuser's evidence before submitting his own. The lawsuit ultimately claims there was a violation of Title IX and discrimination against the plaintiff since USC didn't put effective policies in place to prevent the assault from happening and for predetermining the outcome of the complaint.
What Happens When Universities Ignore Rules
If universities don't handle Title IX cases properly, it leads to substantial damage for both plaintiff and defendant. Bias toward one party or another also, unfortunately, plays a role in these investigations. In cases of rape or sexual assault, administrators are typically more inclined to side unfairly with the accuser than the accused. This discrimination and institutional mishandling often result in an unjust conclusion for the accused.
In the USC case, bias on the part of the university administrators was still present, but working in the opposite direction. The USC Title IX investigator handling the case acted in favor of the alleged rapist, according to the plaintiff's recent lawsuit.
This kind of predetermined prejudice leads to universities ignoring rules and counterevidence. Negligence creates an atmosphere that discriminates against some students—as was the case with the plaintiff in the USC lawsuit. This lawsuit isn't the first accusation leveled against USC for mishandling campus investigations, showing that the problem is ongoing.
Universities that don't handle Title IX cases properly let accusers and the accused get away with injustice.
Why You Need an Attorney to Handle University Title IX Cases
An experienced Title IX attorney can help you navigate your university's investigation process. It's the school's responsibility to know these rules and adhere to them faithfully. As a student, you may not be aware of how Title IX cases work or how badly your case has been mishandled.
An attorney can hold universities to account and ensure that your rights are protected during a Title IX case. Attorney Joseph D. Lento has handled Title IX cases at universities across the country and understands how to protect your rights and your future. Contact the Lento Law Firm today at 888-535-3686 for a consultation.