A. Timing of and Grounds for Appeal. In cases involving students, within five (5) business days of receipt of the Outcome Letter, the Claimant, Respondent or both may submit a written appeal to the Title IX Coordinator handling their case based only on one or more of the following grounds:
- To determine whether there was a material deviation from the procedural protections provided;
- To consider new facts or information sufficient to alter the decision that were not known or knowable to the appealing party during the time of the hearing;
- To determine whether the decision reached was based on a preponderance of evidence; or
- To determine whether the sanctions were disproportionate to the findings.
The Title IX Coordinator will notify the parties of the filing of the appeal within two (2) business days of receiving all necessary information for processing the appeal.
B. Form and Content of Appeal. Appeals must be made in writing, include the name of the appealing party, and bear evidence that it was submitted by the appealing party. The appeal statement must contain a sufficient description supporting the grounds for appeal. If the grounds for appeal is to consider new facts sufficient to alter the decision that were not known or knowable to the appealing party during the time of the investigation, then the written appeal must include such information. The Title IX Coordinator retains discretion to verify and/or waive minor procedural variations in the timing and content of the appeal submission.
The non-appealing party shall receive a copy of the appeal. The non-appealing party may submit a written statement within ten (10) business days of receipt of the Outcome Letter that may seek to affirm the initial decision and/or respond to the appeal statement
C. Stay of Recommended Corrective Action and Imposition of Interim Measures Pending Appeal. The Title IX Coordinator shall have discretion to impose or withhold any applicable sanctions prior to the appeal deadline and prior to the resolution of any appeal. If a Hearing Board determines a Respondent to be in violation of this policy and issues sanctions, but the Title IX Coordinator determines sanctions should be withheld pending the appeal, the Title IX Coordinator shall impose accommodations or other interim measures consistent with the Hearing Board’s determination and that minimize the burden on the Claimant. The Title IX Coordinator may also continue to take interim measures as provided in this policy.
D. Conducting the Appeal. The appeal will be heard and determined by the Appeals Board. The Board is comprised of three members (one of whom will be designated as the Board chairperson), selected from the pool of faculty and staff who are trained to serve on the Sexual Misconduct and Advisor Response Team (SMART). The Appeals Board will consider all information related to the Formal Resolution Hearing, and any written statements received in relation to the appeal, but no other information. The Appeals Board chairperson is authorized to convene an Appeal Hearing (subject to the same procedural safeguards as a Formal Resolution Hearing), or the Appeal Board may determine the appeal based on the existing record. If an appeal hearing takes place, the Claimant and Respondent will not be present at the same time, but both will be given the opportunity to give statements to the Appeal Board.
E. The Appeals Board shall determine whether the Hearing Board made an error on the grounds contained in the appeal statement.
F. Results on Appeal. The Title IX Coordinator will notify both the Claimant and the Respondent within three (3) business days of the decision on appeal in addition to the Associate Dean of Students. The decision on appeal may:
- Affirm a finding of responsibility and the sanction(s);
- Affirm a finding of responsibility and increase or reduce, but not eliminate, the sanction(s);
- Affirm a finding of non-responsibility;
- Reverse a finding of responsibility and the sanction(s);
- Reverse a finding of non-responsibility and impose sanction(s); or
- Remand the case to the Deputy Title IX Coordinator to coordinate further investigation and determination. In such cases, the procedural provisions of this policy will apply.
Following the decision on appeal, the Title IX Coordinator shall have discretion to extend accommodations consistent with providing support to either or both parties. Such measures shall be consistent with the results of the appeal.
G. Finality of Decisions on Appeal. Decisions on appeal are final and conclusive.
To ensure that sanctions upheld or imposed on appeal are enforced and/or corrective action is taken, notice of the sanctions will be provided to the Associate Dean of Students in cases where the Respondent is a student.