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The Role of a Title IX Lawyer in College

May 31

Title IX, which was originally part of Civil Rights Act of 1965, prohibits discrimination in programs and projects receiving federal funding based on sexuality and gender identity. It is an expansive law with many ramifications. Title IX cases often turn on the question of consent, which is an extremely complex issue in the context of college life, especially when alcohol or drugs are involved.

The process to defend against a Title IX charge is not only time consuming, but also emotionally draining. Students can be isolated during a crucial period of their formative year and face a social stigma. In addition, students may lose scholarship and job opportunities, or their ability in the near future to attend school of choice. A Title IX lawyer who is experienced and skilled can help to protect the rights of a student accused.

During the initial investigation of a Title IX case, investigators must begin gathering all relevant evidence, which often includes texts, voice messages, and other documentation. Investigators are also likely to schedule an initial interview, called an "intake meeting," with the complainant and respondent separately. A TTitle IX Lawyer Chicago must present as many details as possible during this stage and highlight any inconsistencies that may exist in the complainant’s account of events in order to undermine their credibility.

The investigator is required to inform all parties of the findings of the investigation in writing once it has been completed. In cases where the accused or complainant could have contact with each other on campus, the coordinator may impose interim measures such as no-contact instructions. This could include changing the housing arrangements or adjusting the class schedules. The coordinator can also impose further restrictions on both parties, such a requiring them to notify law enforcement of any incidents, or denying their access to campus-related activities.

If the accused and accuser cannot reach an informal settlement, the school will hold a hearing specifically designed for Title IX proceedings. Although federal guidelines stress that the process shouldn't resemble a court trial, schools can determine their own procedure. These rules are not uniform, but they do protect the accused as does the criminal justice system. A Title IX Defense Lawyer may be able to assist the accused in preparing a compelling defense, ensuring due process.

Title IX hearings have become more frequent as a result of the current media climate and allegations of sexual assault. In the past, administrators could take their time to investigate these claims. Now they are under pressure to look into any allegations of misconduct or sexual assault as quickly as possible. This increased scrutiny makes it harder for schools to trust the accuser. The accused may feel that they have been unfairly treated. The accused is more likely able to prevail if they present a strong defense, and can demonstrate that their actions are not sexually inappropriate or offensive.

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