In addition to a criminal trial, if you are accused of committing a criminal offense as a college student you will likely have to attend a disciplinary hearing as well.
With this in mind, the following is what you should expect including who will be at the disciplinary hearing and how an attorney can help. For assistance with your case, call and schedule a consultation with a DC student defense lawyer today.
First, you will receive a notice, typically by e-mail, that you are facing a disciplinary charge. That will be followed by an initial meeting with one of the lawyers that works for the school or in the judicial office by a school official responsible for that type of communication.
Then a hearing will be scheduled. In some institutions the student has the option of having the hearing before a group of students or before school officials such as a group of professors. Then the hearing will occur and a decision will be issued typically a few days to a few weeks after the hearing. Then you will have the option to appeal based on the outcome of the case.
There are two main types of disciplinary hearings. There is the disciplinary hearing officiated by a student, a group of students, or by one or more faculty members. The choice between students or professors depends on the school, as there are certain schools for which using students may make your case tougher. However, the decision also depends on the charge or accusation.
In general it is often a good idea to get the most education, experienced person to make the decision, which oftentimes means you go with the professor over the group of students.
A lawyer can do the investigation necessary to help prepare for the hearing and prepare the student to either ask or answer questions in the hearing. If a lawyer is in the room with the student, it can really help even if they are not allowed to speak. It can really be instrumental in shaping the questions asked, responding to answers given by witnesses, and making arguments at the conclusion of the case.
One of the biggest values is that a lawyer will prevent the student from making a mistake, like reaching out to a person who is accusing them. The lawyer can also preserve evidence that will be helpful, particularly electronic evidence or social media evidence.
A lawyer can immediately start investigating the accusation and start talking to witnesses, which is helpful in a hearing to defend the student. The earlier a lawyer is brought in, the better it is.
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