If you have been accused of a Title IX crime, the first step is knowing the gravity of the situation. Understanding Title IX is beneficial for both the defendant and the complainant. Many Title IX cases result in lawsuits by students’ families. As the accused party, you should know your rights and how you can protect yourself from being falsely blamed for a crime.
One of the questions asked about Title IX hearings at schools is whether the involved parties are allowed to bring an attorney. While both parties can consult with an attorney and take their help in gathering evidence, the students have to speak for themselves during the hearing. To know more, speak to a title ix lawyer today.
Can you bring a lawyer to your Title IX hearing?
A Title IX hearing may have similar attributes to a court case, such as presenting arguments, evidence, witnesses, doctor’s notes, etc. However, unlike a court hearing, your lawyer is not allowed to speak on your behalf during the Title IX hearing. You have the right to hire the advisor of your choice, who may or may not be an attorney, but you must speak during the hearing. In other words, your attorney can advise you but not represent you.
Additionally, your school or college may have its own policies regarding what your lawyer or advisor can or cannot help you with. The advisor is usually meant to offer legal guidance and support but not act as a representative. You must be your own representative. This is why it is advised to consult with your attorney properly before the hearing.
Recently, some schools have changed this rule and loosened it a bit. While you must still represent yourself, your attorney or advisor can cross-examine the other party and the witnesses they bring forth. During the hearing, your advisor will be in the room the entire time, and you can consult with them privately before speaking again.
In brief, your attorney or advisor’s role would be to privately consult you, investigate the case, gather evidence, legally guide you and prepare you for the hearing.
It is important to note that your attorney/advisor is also not allowed to interview the other parties involved or speak during other interviews related to the case. They are not allowed to directly address anyone involved in the procedure. All communications must come directly from the student, that is, you.