What should you do when you or your child has gotten a notice of Disciplinary Action?
If you are in college, graduate school or any school of higher education, receiving a Notice of Disciplinary Action means that your school believes you have done something that violates their Code of Conduct. If you get this notice, it means your school is formally charging you with violating their disciplinary code and a hearing will take place to determine your guilt. It also means that you may face consequences: from a warning to expulsion. Experienced legal advice is a must if you want to have a fair hearing and just results.
Common incidents that warrant a Notice of Disciplinary action are:
- Sexual harassment, Title IX violations
- Fake ID
- Alcohol or drug violations
- Theft or destruction of property
- Grading issues
- Hazing incidents
- Incivility or offensive speech
- Arrest for criminal charges
A notice of Disciplinary Action means that you could be facing serious consequences. Penalties include:
- Disciplinary probation
- Removal from campus housing
- Written warning
- Warning / Reprimand
A student expelled from his college may find it difficult to ever obtain an undergraduate or graduate degree. Income and job choices may be diminished for a lifetime. A student convicted of a disciplinary violation may find it difficult to complete his degree and may result in refusal of admittance to post-graduate school, denial of employment, or professional licensure.
What are school disciplinary hearings like?
As a parent or a student you most likely have not had experience with school disciplinary proceedings. First thing you must know is that a disciplinary proceeding does not have the same protections for the accused as there would be in a court of law. Schools are not concerned with Due Process for the accused and the ability to defend yourself is severely limited. Because your rights are limited and narrowly defined , having experienced counsel during all aspects of the disciplinary process is imperative.
There are many specific and onerous rules that must be followed during a disciplinary proceeding. Statements and witnesses must be submitted pre-hearing or run the risk of being excluded. You may be surprised to find out that witnesses can testify anonymously, solely by written statement. In some instances, schools will not even allow an attorney to be present during the hearing. Because the structure of the hearing process is to give students the least protection possible, you need to be prepared with the best advice and knowledge so you fully understand the allegations, process and potential consequences.
Also, you always have the right to appeal the school’s decision. Because we appeal all unfavorable decisions, I work with you to plan out a strategy that will concentrate on issues during the hearing that will ultimately benefit the appeal.
How can I help you face a college or university disciplinary action?
These cases tend to move very quickly, so taking action and calling me soon after receiving notice is important. There are steps that we need to take immediately to help plan out our overall defense. We may need to secure witness statements. We may need to review video footage. The best chance of minimizing consequences is to have a consistent and relevant defense from the beginning that we put forth through all aspects of the proceedings from pre-hearing, during the hearing and during the appeal process. My experience in the areas of Criminal Defense and School and Special Education Law have allowed me to excel at helping students accused of wrongdoing in an educational setting.
If you are in college, graduate school or any school of higher education and you have received a notice of disciplinary hearing please call or email and I will be happy to see if I can be of any help. Consultations are always free and I am available 24 hours, 7 days a week.
Nassau County Criminal Law Office
200 Old Country Road Suite 2 S Mineola, NY 11501 Telephone: 516-742-2300
Queens County Criminal Law Office
80-02 Kew Gardens Road Suite 300 Kew Gardens, NY 11415 Telephone: 718-742-6300