Facing a Sexual Misconduct or Sex Discrimination Charge at School? You Need a Title IX Attorney to Fight for You!
If you have been accused of sexual misconduct or sex discrimination under Title IX, you need a skilled Title IX attorney to fight for your rights. You may feel inclined to ignore the accusations or assume all you will get is a slap on the wrist, but that is not the case. Title IX action can result in suspension, expulsion, damage to your reputation, and even criminal charges. With your future and reputation at stake, it is essential to contact a Title IX attorney in California to represent you as soon as you become aware of an accusation against you.
The Basics of Title IX
The language of Title IX is clear and concise. It states, “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.” This applies to schools, local and state educational agencies, and institutions that receive federal financial assistance from the U.S. Department of Education.
While the language of Title IX might seem as if it applies only to the employees of a college or university, that is not the case. The courts have interpreted Title IX to apply to the conduct of students, too. Thus, sexual misconduct by students is a violation of Title IX. Sexual misconduct, which includes sexual assault, rape, harassment, and other offenses, is deemed a form of Title IX discrimination. Every school must have a Title IX Coordinator, create and distribute a policy against sex discrimination, and make known procedures for students to file complaints of sex discrimination.
These cases are taken very seriously by institutions as the ultimate penalty for non-compliance is removal of federal funds. As such, many colleges and universities aggressively pursue Title IX sexual misconduct charges. If you have been accused of a Title IX sexual discrimination or sexual misconduct violation, you need a Title IX attorney to fight for you.
Potential Penalties for Title IX Sexual Offenses in California
The potential penalties for Title IX sexual offense charges are:
- Disciplinary probation
- Disciplinary Suspension
- Loss of Privileges
- Relocation or Residence
- Verbal or Written Warning
- Loss of Scholarship
- Required Community Service
- Mandatory Counseling
- Mandatory Written Apology
- Discretionary Sanctions
- Withholding of a Degree and/or transcripts
- Record of the violation noted on your transcripts
As you can see, there is a wide range of penalties, including having your Title IX violation placed on your permanent transcript, which may preclude you from getting into another college or university.
There truly is a lot at stake and regardless of the outcome, students accused of sexual misconduct under Title IX in California may be forced to undergo months, if not longer, of investigations, hearings, and disciplinary procedures. That is why it is important to have an experienced Title IX attorney to help you through the process.
How the Title IX Disciplinary Process Works
Schools in California are mandated under Title IX to process sexual misconduct and discrimination accusations in a certain manner.
As soon as a school is made aware of the accusation, immediate action will be taken. The school will need to:
- Determine what happened through an investigation
- Take immediate action to end sexual violence or harassment
- Take necessary steps to prevent its recurrence and address its effects
- Protect the complainant by taking the steps to resolve the situation
- Provide a grievance procedure
The process varies by school so it is important to have a skilled Title IX attorney on your side to help you get the best outcome possible.
Defending Against a Sexual Discrimination or Sexual Offense Charge under Title IX
While the Title IX process is supposed to be impartial and fair to both the complainant and the accused, that is not always the case. Every allegation must be investigated and disciplinary action can be based on a preponderance of evidence, meaning it requires only 50.1 percent.
The student accused of a Title IX sexual discrimination or misconduct violation also does not have the same due process rights that one would have in a criminal proceeding. In Title IX cases:
- Presentation of exculpatory evidence can be limited
- Cross-examination of the complainant is discouraged
- Hearings and appeals are not required
- Discipline may be determined by a single Title IX Coordinator
Simmons Wagner, LLP is a Title IX attorney that can help draft written statements, prepare you for hearings, and negotiate with school administrators to resolve your case favorably. Additionally, if the case results in criminal charges, we are experienced in handling sex crimes and will provide you with aggressive legal representation.
Contacting a Title IX Attorney in California is the Best Way Forward!
If you have been charged with a sexual discrimination or sexual misconduct violation under Title IX in California, you need to contact a Title IX attorney right away. An experienced Title IX attorney in California like Simmons Wagner, LLP can help you determine the best path forward depending on your situation and prepare you for what is to come. Give us a call today at (949) 439-5857 to schedule an initial consultation.