Washington DC Title IX Lawyer

Title IX is a federal civil rights law that protects gender-based discrimination, including on college and universities campuses that accept any form of federal funding. As a result of directives by the federal government, schools must actively investigate allegations of sexual harassment and misconduct on campus and take actions to discipline those whom they determined have violated Title IX.

The involvement of a Washington DC Title IX lawyer may be essential to protecting your rights if others have accused you of committing sexual misconduct.

All college campuses have enacted Title IX-driven policies and procedures within their student conduct codes that address allegations of sexual misconduct. Unfortunately, schools may investigate and discipline accused students in an overzealous manner without their meaningful involvement or any regard for their rights.

Enlisting the help of a seasoned student defense lawyer may be necessary to knowing what to expect during Title IX proceedings and defending yourself against baseless accusations.

Title IX Violations and Consent in Washington DC

A significant issue in many Title IX student conduct code proceedings is the consent of both parties to the sexual activity that is the subject of the complaint. In many cases, the incident that one party alleges to be sexual misconduct is voluntary sexual activity from the perspective of the other party. Therefore, determining whether consent exists in any incident can be crucial to whether a school finds that students engaged in sexual misconduct in violation of Title IX.

As a result of often conflicting stories, Title IX policies at colleges and universities often contain precise definitions of consent. Although the exact definition may vary from one policy to the next, it usually requires a party to do more than assume that the other party consents to the sexual acts. Title IX policies often require that both parties be fully informed and capable of making the mutual decision to engage in sexual activity.

Consent typically also requires that there be no force, violence, coercion, threats, or intimidation by one party to persuade the other to engage in sexual activity. Likewise, impairment by alcohol or drugs, being asleep, and being unconscious all are likely to hinder a party from giving explicit consent. A Title IX lawyer in Washington DC may be able to measure the facts of an individual situation against the definition of consent in sexual misconduct claims.

Potential Penalties in Washington DC Title IX Claims

Allegations of sexual misconduct on campus may result in both Title IX student disciplinary proceedings and criminal court proceedings. Due to the differences in the standards of proof and relevant evidence in these proceedings, it is possible for students to face penalties in disciplinary actions, but not criminal liability. In either type of proceeding, however, the extent of the penalties depends on the perceived severity of the misconduct and the harm to others as a result of the misconduct.

Potential academic penalties in Title IX administrative disciplinary proceedings may include probation, mandatory counseling or treatment, exclusion from extracurricular activities, loss of college credits, and loss of scholarships. In some cases, schools may suspend or even expel students found guilty of sexual misconduct on campus. These sanctions can lead to difficulties in finishing college degrees, obtaining internships, and entering specific career fields due to the need for professional licensing.

Aside from academic penalties, students may face criminal charges as a result of allegations of sexual assault, sexual harassment, or other forms of sexual violence. If convicted, students could be subject to protective orders or restraining orders, jail sentences, fines, and mandatory registration as sex offenders.

The assistance of a Title IX attorney in Washington DC can be invaluable in avoiding or minimizing some or all these penalties, both from Title IX proceedings and criminal prosecutions.

Work with a DC Title IX Attorney Today

Facing allegations of sexual misconduct on campus can be devastating for any college or university student. It can ruin your reputation, limit your housing and course options, restrict your extracurricular activities, and ultimately lead to your inability to continue working toward a college degree. A Washington DC Title IX lawyer can be a valuable ally as you defend yourself against accusations of sexual misconduct.

False allegations or a lack of communication should not ruin your entire future. Take the steps necessary to protect yourself by getting legal advice as soon as you receive notice of any accusations against you.