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What A Title IX Defense Attorney Wants You to Know About Title IX No Contact Orders

Title IX By Binnall Law Group - 2021/12/31 at 07:00am

When a student accuses someone of a Title IX violation, the school can impose a “no contact” order (NCO) on the person accused of the violation. Some colleges refer to these as No Contact Directives or another term. NCOs may be accompanied by other restrictions that can have a broad reach and make life confusing and difficult for the person facing allegations.

It is important for accused students to understand their rights and know how to act when an order is imposed. If they say or do the wrong thing, it could seriously harm their case and leave them open to further penalties. A Title IX defense attorney can help comply with the terms of the order and may be able to have excessively restrictive terms amended.

Why No Contact Orders are Issued

If someone has alleged sexual misconduct or another Title IX violation, a school is obligated to take certain steps to protect the person bringing the accusation, even though at this point there is no proof of wrongdoing. Colleges and universities often err on the side of caution and impose severe restrictions on the person accused, which creates a perception of guilt even before the investigation has begun.

The no contact order is intended to create a safe environment for the “victim” while the matter is under investigation. In theory, these orders are designed to prevent the person bringing the accusation from experiencing harassment that creates a hostile environment or a risk of physical or emotional harm. The school’s policy directives usually explain the circumstances administrators are supposed to consider before issuing an NCO, but in many cases, it is issued as standard practice.

The Terms of the Order are Critical

Unlike state and federal laws which are easy to locate, the rules governing no contact orders usually depend on school policies which differ from place to place. An experienced Title IX defense attorney will know how to find the most up-to-date rules and how those rules will be interpreted. Students dealing with an NCO need to comply with all restrictions set forth in the order itself as well as the ground rules that apply in Title IX cases. For instance, it is critical to understand how the school defines “contact” because it may or may not include:

  • Text messages
  • Email
  • Social media posts
  • Third-party communications
  • Being in the same physical location or within a certain proximity
  • Attending functions which the victim may also attend

School policies also dictate the punishment that applies for violating a no contact order. The penalties could be mild, such as an increase in restrictions. Or a student could be suspended, denied admission to campus, or reported for criminal prosecution.

Get Help with No Contact Orders from a Title IX Defense Attorney

No contact orders need to be taken seriously. To avoid the risk of violation and protect your rights, if you have been issued a no contact order, talk to a knowledgeable Title IX defense attorney. Mistakes could not only increase the penalties involved but also make you look guilty of the underlying offense. A dedicated student defense lawyer at Binnall Law Group could help you make the right impact and the best case to defeat the allegations. Contact us now for a confidential consultation.