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Interim Title IX Student Disciplinary Hearing Procedures

Background

The University prohibits acts of sexual harassment through its Anti-Discrimination Policy, Sexual Harassment Policy, and General Student Regulations. Prohibited sexual harassment includes acts of sexual violence, defined as sexual assault, sexual battery, and sexual coercion. Sexual violence refers to physical sexual acts perpetrated against a person’s will or where a person is incapable of giving consent due to the victim’s use of drugs or alcohol. An individual may also be unable to give consent due to an intellectual or other disability.

All complaints of alleged sexual harassment are investigated under the oversight of MSU Law’s Title IX Coordinator. If that investigation results in a finding that sexual harassment has occurred, the Title IX Coordinator will file a complaint with the Dean, and such complaint will be processed under the Code of Student Discipline to determine the appropriate sanction. In those cases, the Title IX Coordinator (or designee) will be identified as the complainant and it will be the prerogative of the victim to determine in what, if any, capacity he/she will participate (i.e., co-complainant, witness, or no participation.)

Complaints referred to Dean after investigation by the Title IX Coordinator call for a unique set of procedural considerations. Federal law compels the Title IX Coordinator to conduct a prompt, thorough, and impartial investigation of complaints of sexual harassment (including sexual violence). If that investigation results in a finding that the University’s Sexual Harassment Policy has been violated, federal law requires the Law College to take prompt, remedial action to remedy the harassment. Referral to the Dean to determine the appropriate sanction is an important part of the Law College’s obligation to take prompt, remedial action.

Interim Procedures

A thorough review of the Law College’s Code of Student Discipline and other relevant policies and procedures must be conducted in consultation with the faculty.  The following interim student disciplinary hearing procedures will be followed until the review is complete. 

Hearing and Appeal Procedures

The Dean will follow the same procedure as outlined in the Code of Student Discipline, with the following clarifications:

  1. The complainant will be provided the same opportunity as the respondent to meet with the Dean or the Dean’s designee after filing the complaint. The Dean or the Dean’s designee will advise the complainant of his/her rights and responsibilities under the Code of Student Discipline. If the complainant is the Title IX Coordinator (or designee), the victim(s) may also attend this administrative meeting.
  2. Either party may appeal a decision of the Dean to a Hearing Panel, as provided by the Code of Student Discipline.  The decision of the Hearing Panel is final.

Code of Student Discipline

Drafted with support from the Michigan State University Office for Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives.


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