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What You Need to Know About No Contact Orders

Litigation By Binnall Law Group - 2023/01/12 at 11:20am

What is a No Contact Order? 

A no contact order, or NCO as a Title IX attorney may call it, is a preliminary administrative action a school may take to prevent Title IX parties from contacting one another. It may be one-way (usually preventing the Respondent from contacting the Complainant) or mutual (preventing both the Respondent and Complainant from contacting one another). No contact orders are usually entered at the beginning of a Title IX process and should be taken very seriously as a violation of a no contact order may result in sanctions. 

 What does a No Contact Order Include? 

 Notably, no contact orders usually include both direct and indirect communication. In other words, it prevents direct communication such as in-person communications and electronic communications (text, email, social media, etc.). It also includes indirect communications such as asking a friend to contact the party. 

 How are No Contact Orders Enforced? 

Each school provides its own no contact order rules, including how the school may enforce the no contact order. For instance, some schools may add the no contact order violation to the Title IX investigation whereas others refer no contact order violations to Student Misconduct. Due to this, it is especially important to read your school’s no contact order rules and, if you can, hire an experienced Title IX attorney to ensure you are aware of your rights and restrictions under the no contact order rules of your school.  

Can I Request a No Contact Order? 

 Yes, if a no contact order is not automatically distributed, you may request one from the Title IX Coordinator. If you are not aware of who the Title IX Coordinator is at your school, you can likely contact any administrator who will point you in the right direction. 

 If a No Contact Order is Not in Place, Can I Contact the Complainant? 

 Even if a no contact order is not issued, it is good judgment to act as if one is in place. It will not help you to contact the other party in a Title IX proceeding and should be avoided in nearly all circumstances. It is therefore helpful to have a Title IX attorney to serve as your advisor to help navigate these issues.