Important Title IX Decision Involves Unnamed Fraternity Parties

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com The U.S. Court of Appeals has affirmed the denial of Kansas State University’s Motions to Dismiss in a consolidated case that will likely have a lasting impact in how colleges and universities handle claims of...
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California Court of Appeal Instructs on What Constitutes Minimum Due Process

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com It is understandable that colleges and universities are taking far more seriously issues related to sexual assault on campus than was historically the case. But, one court after another has found that far too frequently...
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Lawsuit Filed Against Yale is An Attack on Greek Organizations

Tim Burke, Manley Burke LPA, tburke@manleyburke.com On February 12, 2019, three female students at Yale filed suit against the University and nine fraternity chapters, their international organizations, and their house corporations in the United States District Court in Connecticut. The...
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Male Assailants Claim Victimization Against Their Universities

Ilana Linder, Manley Burke, ilinder@manleyburke.com Over the last few years, there has been an increase in the number of lawsuits filed by male students against their universities in which a claim of gender bias in the school’s handling of sexual...
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Lawsuit Filed Following Criminal Plea Bargain

Katherine Schoepflin, Manley Burke, kschoepflin@manleyburke.com The former President of the Phi Delta Theta Chapter at Baylor University and the National Fraternity are being sued for $1 million dollars following a plea deal stemming from a 2016 sexual assault case. The...
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Failure to Provide Cross-Examination Overturns Dismissal of University of Michigan In Due Process Case

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com On September 7th of this year, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit issued a decision overturning the dismissal of the University of Michigan in a case filed by John Doe. Doe...
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Proactive Bystanders Needed: How Greek Organizations Can Help Prevent Campus Assaults and Death

Susan Stone, Kristina Supler, and Dayna Hloska, Kohrman Jackson & Krantz, scs@kjk.com & kws@kjk.com The very nature of Greek life implies that students join fraternities and sororities to form tight bonds. Bonding is why students join, why they stay and...
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Interesting Settlement from Utah State

Settlements of lawsuits are not unusual. They are often frequently preferred to the uncertainty and huge expense of protracted litigation. Settlements, when opposing parties agree, can include provisions requiring parties to do things that a court decision could not. For...
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Indiana District Court Denies MSJ in Sexual Assault Case

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com In the June 2018 issue of Fraternal Law we reported on the status of Jane Doe No. 62 v. Delta Tau Delta, Theta Alpha Chapter1 in which the federal court judge had asked the Supreme...
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Two New Federal Court Decisions of Interest

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com Cases involving allegations of sexual assault, the rights of those accused, and who is liable for the wrongdoers conduct continue to pile up. Two federal district court cases are among the latest examples.  One in...
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New 6th Circuit Court Decision in Sexual Assault Case

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com A February 9th decision by the United States Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit demonstrates again the challenges faced by universities in appropriately conducting sexual misconduct disciplinary actions in a fair and constitutionally acceptable...
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Pi Kappa Alpha Dismissed from Sexual Assault Case

Thomas J. Dement II, Leitner, Williams, Dooley & Napolitan, PLLC I. INTRODUCTION On October 27, 2015, Plaintiff Jane Doe filed a sexual-assault lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee in Nashville against three Pi...
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American Bar Association Task Force Seeks Balance in College Sexual Assault Disciplinary Proceeding

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com In June of 2017, the American Bar Association’s Criminal Justice Section Task Force on College Due Process Rights and Victims Protections released two related documents, a Report and Recommendations on resolving allegations of campus sexual...
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Federal Court Emphasizes Importance of Procedural Fairness

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com On August 25, 2017, United States District Court Judge Michael Barrett granted a preliminary injunction to a Miami University student which prohibited the University from enforcing a 2-year suspension for the student’s alleged sexual misconduct.1...
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Rolling Stone Settles with Phi Kappa Psi

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com Two and a half years ago, Rolling Stone stunned the University of Virginia (UVA), the fraternity world and America in general with an expose of alleged sexual assault in the Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity House...
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University of Oregon Policy puts Control of Reporting Sexual Assault in Hands of Survivors

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com Fraternal leaders and, on more than a few occasions, university faculty members, have raised serious questions when some universities have attempted to expand the definition of mandatory reporters under the Violence Against Women Act, or...
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Three Recent Federal Lawsuits Raise Due Process Concerns In University Disciplinary Procedures

Micah Kamrass, Manley Burke, mkamrass@manleyburke.com Three separate federal cases have emerged where students are challenging university disciplinary action taken against them on the grounds of due process violations. Interestingly, within the last two months, all three cases have survived attempts...
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Two Cases Highlight The Courts' Difficulty Resolving Due Process Challenges

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com Two recent court decisions, both involving the University of Cincinnati (UC), demonstrate the challenges, even the courts are having in attempting to balance the important need of addressing sexual assault on campus with the need...
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A Verdict Against Rolling Stone

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com Rolling Stone and the author of the discredited article describing an alleged rape in a University of Virginia fraternity house were found liable for defaming a University of Virginia (UVA) Administrator by the manner she...
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Federal Court: George Mason University Violated Accused Student's Due Process and Free Speech Rights

Colin Pool A federal district court has ruled that George Mason University violated the due process and free speech rights of a male student accused of sexual assault.1 The plaintiff, John Doe, had been expelled from the university after being...
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Federal Suit Filed Against MSU and Kappa Sigma

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com The Michigan State University Board of Trustees, two university officials, and Kappa Sigma Fraternity, face a federal court lawsuit.1  Four female students from Michigan State claim the University failed to appropriately investigate and respond to...
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Lawsuits Filed Following UVA Article Retraction

Colin Pool Three lawsuits have been filed against Rolling Stone magazine following the retraction of its discredited1 article, “A Rape on Campus: A Brutal Assault and Struggle for Justice at UVA.” This article was previously discussed in our January 2015...
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Oregon Court Upholds Summary Judgment for National, but Overturns for Chapter

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com On September 2, 2015, the Court of Appeals for the State of Oregon decided Scheffel v. Oregon Beta Chapter of Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity, upholding a Summary Judgment granted to the national fraternity, but reversing...
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Lack of Due Process a Problem in Addressing Sexual Misconduct

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manley.com The Safe Campus and Fair Campus bills, while supported by both the National Panhellenic Conference and the North American Intrafraternity Conference, have drawn mixed reviews.  The National Association of Scholars and the National District Attorneys...
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Two New Bills Address Sexual Assault Issues

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com In July, two bills – the Safe Campus Act and the Fair Campus Act – were introduced in the United States House of Representatives.  Both bills have the support of the National Panhellenic Conference (NPC)...
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Maine Supreme Court Says National May Be Liable

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com On June 18, 2015 the Maine Supreme Judicial Court issued a decision1 contrary to a long line of cases around the country which have ruled that National Fraternities will not typically be held liable when...
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Penn State and Fraternity Sued

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com Among the past academic year’s fraternity misconduct that made national headlines was the allegation that some members of the Kappa Delta Rho Chapter at Penn State University used a secret Facebook page(s) to share nude...
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The Bipartisan Campus Accountability and Safety Act

On February 26, 2015, a bipartisan group of 12 United States Senators introduced the Campus Safety and Accountability Act to address the issue of campus sexual assault.  The sponsors are Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), Roy Blount (D-MO), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Shelly...
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Finding the Right Balance

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com One of the most difficult issues currently on our campuses which impacts fraternities and sororities, as well as all students, is the issue of sexual assault, or sexual misconduct. The issue is receiving intense attention...
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Maine Supreme Court Hears Case on National Fraternity Liability

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com Now awaiting decision following oral argument on December 10, 2014 is a case in the Maine Supreme Judicial Court seeking to impose liability on the National Fraternity for the misconduct of an individual member of...
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Is Shutting Down Greek Systems the Answer?

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com The recent Rolling Stone article “A Rape on Campus:  A Brutal Assault and Struggle for Justice at UVA” begins with a detailed description of an ugly gang rape in the upper floor of a fraternity...
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Oregon Committee Recommends Suspending Expansion

Micah Kamrass, Manley Burke, mkamrass@manleyburke.com A task force at the University of Oregon formed to review campus sexual assault policies issued a report urging the administration to “immediately suspend plans to expand fraternity and sorority life.” The Twenty Students Per...
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Deaths, Assaults, and Injuries Lead to Campus-Wide Bans on Greek Life

Daniel McCarthy & Micah Kamrass, Manley Burke, mkamrass@manleyburke.com In just the last few months, a number of universities have experienced terrible tragedies on their campuses. Many of these schools, both public and private, have responded by indefinitely banning some or...
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Advisors Designated as Campus Security Authorities

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com In an August 8, 2014 memo to “Advisors of Recognized Student Organizations at Penn State,” the University’s Vice President of Student Affairs, Damon Sims, announced that Penn State has now designated advisors to recognize student...
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Greeks Continue to Receive Poor National Press

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com National press for the Greek world has not been good the last few months.  A series of Bloomberg articles highly critical of fraternities and the record of hazing and alcohol-related deaths culminated in a January...
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Court Dismisses Sexual Assault Case

Trish Walsh, Brad Stanford According to her complaint, on Halloween night in 2008, a 21-year-old woman and former Oregon State University student was sexually assaulted by a member of the Oregon Beta Chapter of Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity in Corvallis,...
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SIGMA CHI CHAPTER AT ARIZONA STATE SUED

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com On February 1, 2010, a lawsuit1 was filed against “the Sigma Chi Fraternity at Arizona State University” and that Chapter’s House Corporation, along with two specifically named members of the Chapter and 100 John Does. ...
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DEAN ACQUITTED FOR FAILURE TO REPORT A FELONY

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com On February 9, 2007, a jury in Cleveland, Ohio acquitted the former Dean of Notre Dame College on two misdemeanor counts of failure to report a felony.1 As reported in the September 2006 issue of...
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CONFIDENTIALITY VS. LEGAL OBLIGATION

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com “I’ve been raped, but please don’t tell anyone.” When the young member of a fraternity or sorority comes to an officer or an alum advisor with that statement, it presents a difficult dilemma.  Obviously, there...
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VICTIMS OF RAPE — AND ALCOHOL

Tim Burke, Manley Burke, tburke@manleyburke.com The Journal of Studies on Alcohol published in its February issue a major new study “Correlates of Rape While Intoxicated in a National Sample of College Women.”1 The results came from 119 colleges participating in...
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STUDENT RECORDS -- PRIVATE OR NOT?

Theresa M. Zawacki Student records are private records - but students cannot use federal law to sue a university that releases their private records to the public. Federal law requires colleges  and universities to keep much information about students confidential...
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