Knowing that you have become a subject of a Title IX investigation in your school can be quite terrifying. Much is at stake in this investigation. And whatever you say or do can affect your education, reputation, and future career. Although you may be confused about what to do, an education lawyer near me may be able to help. An attorney can guide you through the disciplinary process while ensuring your rights are protected. Also, hiring a lawyer can help you avoid costly mistakes that can work against you. After getting a Title IX complaint, here are important steps you must take:
Watch What You Do or Say
When somebody files a Title IX complaint, the school will launch an investigation into the incident. The investigation will conduct interviews and collect other pieces of evidence. As the accused, you must watch what you say and do as the investigation is ongoing. Any statement you make can be used against you.
Often, a Title IX investigation is meant to find evidence to support the accusation, leaving you to fend for yourself. But your attorney can guide you, so you can avoid self-discrimination when you appear at a hearing for questioning. If possible, you should not make any statement before you consult with an attorney.
To successfully defend yourself against a sexual misconduct accusation, you should gather and present evidence to refute the charges. You can compile records of communications you had with the accuser and find witnesses who can support your position. Your defense attorney can analyze communications and interview witnesses to build a strong defense strategy. It’s important to know what questions to ask and what to look for to successfully defend yourself against the charges.
Present Your Best Defense
A lot of students don’t realize the severe nature of campus disciplinary proceedings and what is at stake. A defendant may refuse to seek help or be embarrassed about the incident. However, defendants must take appropriate measures. As the accused, you must not allow the other party to present evidence of misconduct without refuting it. You must be able to present evidence that shows an opposing viewpoint. If you need to appeal an administrative decision, the evidence could be significantly more persuasive when presented originally instead of obtained for the purposes of appearance later.
If you get a Title IX complaint, keep in mind that there is legal help available. Support from a skilled lawyer can protect your legal rights and give you the best chance to prevail in the case.