Understanding Title IX: The Key to Protecting Your Rights in Sexual Misconduct Investigations
Title IX is a federal law that aims to eliminate gender-based discrimination in federally funded institutions. In Illinois, the vast majority of higher education institutions are funded by the federal government, making Title IX enforcement an important issue for colleges and universities throughout the state. Any form of sexual misconduct, including sexual harassment, sexual assault, or dating violence, is legally considered discrimination based on gender. As such, any actions constituting sexual misconduct constitute a violation of Title IX.
Colleges and universities must follow federal guidelines when investigating complaints of sexual misconduct committed by or against college students. The process can be complex and challenging for all parties involved. Its recommended that students hire an advisor to help them navigate the complexities of the proceedings.
Choosing an Advisor: A Crucial Decision
During a Title IX proceeding at a college or university in Illinois, both complainants (those who bring allegations) and respondents (those who are accused) have the right to choose anyone they like as their advisor during the process. Choosing wisely can make all the difference in determining the outcome of your case.
The Role of an Attorney as An Advisor
An attorney with experience handling Title IX proceedings is an invaluable asset for respondents during the process. Since attorneys typically have extensive knowledge about what respondents should do to prepare adequately for their investigation or hearing, hiring one ensures that you receive informed guidance and protection throughout each phase of the proceedings.
What Happens During A Title IX Proceeding?
Understanding how a Title IX case unfolds is essential for effectively navigating these investigations.
The complaint: Anyone from school staff to spectators can file complaints about alleged instances of sexual misconduct at colleges and universities in Illinois.
Interim measures: After a complaint has been filed, schools take action to keep complainants from experiencing retaliation from anyone associated with respondents. This measure includes preventing contacts between complainants and respondents or reassigning housing, class schedules changes, or restricting access to certain parts of campus.
The investigation: The formal investigation is conducted by the school. During this process, investigators will interview the complainant, respondent, witnesses and other relevant parties to gather critical information. Based on the investigation’s findings, an investigator will produce a determination.
The hearing: A hearing panel comprised of students and staff is responsible for resolving Title IX investigations in some schools. Each side gets the opportunity to share their perspective during the proceedings while presenting evidence and statements from witnesses. After the closing arguments have been made, the panel will deliberate before making its determination.
Sanctions: If the school determines that a violation has occurred based on evidence presented during an investigation or hearing, they might impose sanctions such as treatment orders, scholarship revocations or suspensions/expulsions.
Appealing Title IX Decisions
In case any party involved with a Title IX proceeding in Illinois isnt satisfied with the final ruling issued by a college or university administrator or board of directors based on decisions made at any point during the process; they can appeal under specific conditions.
How Todd Spodek Can Help
Todd Spodek is a skilled legal professional with over ten years of experience preparing respondents for both investigations and hearings involving Title IX allegations throughout colleges across American. As a licensed attorney in Pennsylvania and New Jersey admitted pro hac vice when necessary to represent clients nationwide, Mr Spodek provides much-needed guidance regarding Title IX matters to students facing sexual misconduct investigations and other disciplinary accusations in Illinois and other states.
Some colleges and universities in Illinois where Mr Spodek has extensive experience advising respondent’s during investigations (in addition to appeals/hearings) are:
– American Academy of Art
– American InterContinental University Online
– Argosy University Chicago
– Argosy University Schaumburg
– Augustana College
– Aurora University
When accused of sexual misconduct allegations in college, early action is necessary to avoid severe outcomes. By providing passionate and fierce legal representation that prioritizes the clients interests and well-being, Mr Spodek can help you prepare for your hearing or investigation. Contact Todd Spodek today for help in gaining the best results possible in your case.