clarkbar

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Hi, I am need of a lawyer that can represent oneself in matters of higher education. I am having difficulty finding one. They seem rare. Does one know of a lawyer or how to find one? What should one look for and ask about a lawyer if one is found?

Please don't respond with the "quote" button when replying!!!!

Thank you
 
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clarkbar

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Pickings are slim. There isn't a real recourse when challenging schools, so you get many passers and one taker. Its hard to get a handle on what is a quality, honest lawyer. Additionally, should one seek a lawyer with much history with dealing with the school, or one part of a larger practice?
 

IlDestriero

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There's a reason you can't easily find one.
I hope you have significant resources as the university can simply drag things out indefinitely, at great expense to you, with attorneys that they already have on salary. In the end, you likely won't win any judgment anyway.
Unless you have proof that you were treated in a way inconsistent with their due process, printed policies, harassed, etc. you have almost no chance of success.
Good luck fighting the man. Everyone screams "lawyer up" when they aren't paying $200/hr to tilt at windmills.
 
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clarkbar

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I've been informed that the only recourse a student has when the school wants to get nasty is to find "breach of contract", for instance I was promised to use the student preference program, in writing, and then it was reneged on. I was treated unfairly. (As one example.)
I have also been advised that "educational" lawyers often do k-12 issues. Contract lawyers, labor lawyers may work in the field. Also, a local lawyer is cheaper, no travel expenses? Is this correct; can anyone offer anything else? Thanks
 

Law2Doc

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I've been informed that the only recourse a student has when the school wants to get nasty is to find "breach of contract", for instance I was promised to use the student preference program, in writing, and then it was reneged on. I was treated unfairly. (As one example.)
I have also been advised that "educational" lawyers often do k-12 issues. Contract lawyers, labor lawyers may work in the field. Also, a local lawyer is cheaper, no travel expenses? Is this correct; can anyone offer anything else? Thanks
What kind of recourse you have depends on the facts and documents. It's silly to suggest that there's an "only recourse" until everything has been reviewed by a trained eye. There may be no recourse, there may be many, or there my be a "loophole" "out" like you suggest. It all depends and this is why giving a fact specific example helps no one.

There are very few certified sub specializations in law. It's not like medicine where you might be additionally trained (except perhaps in taxation or international law). Thus the phrase "educational" law is nonspecific, and it might mean that a lawyer who hold himself out at this has done one case, does multiple cases but limited scope, or does it broadly. So it's hard to say educational means K-12, or covers college, grad school etc. It means what the designee wants it to mean. Lawyers can carve their scope of practice into whatever shape they want. A hungry lawyer might take everything, a guy with a backlog may pick and choose a bit.

Your best bet is to talk to your local bar association and see if they can steer you, or look up local lawyers in martindale, (Martindale Hubbell) which is the national law directory (it's free online), and see who lists relevant practice areas, and start making phone calls. Many places will give you a free consultation, but for these kind of cases you will be expected to pay an hourly rate, not contingency. So yeah, it can be expensive.
 

NickNaylor

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There's a reason you can't easily find one.
I hope you have significant resources as the university can simply drag things out indefinitely, at great expense to you, with attorneys that they already have on salary. In the end, you likely won't win any judgment anyway.
Unless you have proof that you were treated in a way inconsistent with their due process, printed policies, harassed, etc. you have almost no chance of success.
Good luck fighting the man. Everyone screams "lawyer up" when they aren't paying $200/hr to tilt at windmills.
Yeah, and even if he does, what exactly is the endgame here? What does he hope to be awarded by a judge? Bringing suits is a pretty good way to burn bridges, and unless there was some kind of serious and irreversible harm done to you I doubt pursuing legal action is a good use of your time or money.



(sent from my phone)
 
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clarkbar

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I'm trying to get reinstated so I can finish my last rotation...
 
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After talking to a family lawyer friend who has dealt with these types of issues he said the type of school you attend is crucial in determining your options.

Private institutions have an incredible amount of leeway when enforcing their own rules and regulations. Courts have very little jurisdiction when it comes to private entities and you are basically relegated to proving that they did not follow their own rules: even if those rules are not perfect. Private institutions do not need to have a formal due process that would meet basic judicial requirements, but instead need only to follow a majority of their own rules and display a basic sense of fairness and lack of bias when making decisions. Courts are normally very hesitant in getting involved in private institutions and their decisions.

However, public institutions, because they receive public funding are more susceptible to a lawsuit because their due process standards are judged harder and courts have much more jurisdiction. He also advises to be wary of lawyers who are only out to make some money, even when they know the case is unlikely to succeed. Still, I know you have to do what you have to do, especially when it comes to matters of being reinstated. Hope this helps. Goodluck.