School Discipline Lawyers

"Injustice Anywhere is a Threat to Justice Everywhere." - MLK
"Injustice Anywhere is a Threat to Justice Everywhere." - MLK

Florida School Discipline Lawyers

Are you looking for a School Discipline Lawyer in Florida? Look no further. The Education Lawyers at Montgomery Law have spent the last decade litigating school discipline issues against all levels of Schools and Universities.

There are so many Colleges and Universities in Florida, all of them so powerful and foreboding when they have decided to use their size and resources against you, the lonely student. We stand by your side when schools decide to attack. We stand by your side when schools take aim against you for disciplinary allegations.

Issues We Handle

  • Plagiarism
  • Title IX Issues
  • Fraternity / Sorority Issues
  • Grade Disputes
  • Dismissals, and Discrimination
  • Other Disciplinary Issues

What happens at a school disciplinary hearing?

The procedures vary from school to school, but generally you can expect the following (although it is always best to consult with an attorney to make sure you — and the school — are following the polices and procedures).

Some vocabulary to remember as you read the below timeline: The Complainant would be someone (maybe another student or teacher that is making a complaint about you, the student being accused). This would be in a case where there was another person involved rather than a situation involving just you, such as possible cheating. The student being accused is the Respondent.

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    Possible school disciplinary hearing outline (what to expect)

    1. Explanation of Process and Introductions
    2. Opening Statements
    3. Presentation of Charge against the Respondent
    4. School presents a summary of the investigation and evidence
    5. School presents their witnesses
    6. Questions from Complainant (where appropriate), Respondent and Panel
    7. Presentation of Respondent’s Case
    8. Statement by Respondent
    9. Presentation of Respondent’s witnesses
    10. Questions from the School and Panel
    11. Summary Statements By School
    12. Summary Statements By Complainant (where appropriate)
    13. Summary Statements By Respondent
    14. Questions from School, Respondent, and Complainant (where appropriate) and Panel
    15. Adjournment
    16. Deliberation
    17. Decision
    Education Attorney Joseph Montgomery arguing - with success - in front of Federal Judges. Joe is defending a top tier medical student against a large University.

    If the respondent is not found responsible, the hearing is adjourned. If the respondent is found responsible, the Panel will be given a sealed envelope containing: (1) example of sanctions that have been imposed in similar prior cases; (2) any previous offenses by the Respondent, (3) Schools initially recommended sanctions, and then enter into deliberations about sanctions.

    Note that all of this does not always happen in one day and the time from deliberation to decision can be days of weeks. You will want to make sure the school is following their own policies regarding timelines as well as due process rules that may be generally applicable.

    Admissibility of Evidence in a School Discipline Hearing:

    The typical rules of evidence applicable to governmental legal proceedings generally do not apply in school disciplinary hearings. Information is generally deemed to be admissible if it relevant, not unduly repetitious, and of the type on which reasonable people are generally rely on in the conduct of serious affairs. With that said, who gets to make that call? The School. There can be just as many problems with the evidence that the school lets in as with the evidence that the school keeps out. An experienced school discipline lawyer may be able to assist with ensuring that only the appropriate evidence is considered and that nothing exonerating (evidence that can show your innocence) is left out.

    Panel Decision

    Panel Decisions generally require a majority vote, not the unanimous agreement you might expect from a jury in a criminal proceeding.

    Our school discipline lawyers are standing by to support and serve YOU.

    If you have questions please feel free to chat with the LiveChat service that we have on this site (always a live human!).

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    Frequently Asked Questions regarding College / University discipline

    I received something from my school documenting that I was involved in an incident, what should I do?

    If you received an email from your school, see if there is a link that will take you to a portal that may have any incident reports. Print out any important emails or letters in case you lose access to your school emails. This would be a good time to contact an attorney to review the paperwork.

    What if I was involved in an incident that took place off campus?

    Generally, rules of conduct apply to the behaviors of any student and student organization regardless of where it happens. This can include

    1. conduct that may present a danger or threat to the health / safety of students or other people,
    2. conduct that adversely affects the University community and/or the pursuit of its mission,
    3. and/or conduct that violates state or federal laws. Students and student organizations are responsible for their guests and may be held accountable for their guests’ behavior.

    If I accept responsibility, what happens next?

    The school will then determine the resolution option. You may be waiving claims and defenses moving forward. We would suggest you at least consult with another attorney prior to accepting responsibility.

    Are the sanctions worse if I select a Formal Hearing?

    They shouldn't be. If you elect to go through a Formal Hearing, the determination of whether a student is found "responsible" or "not responsible" for a violation of the Student Code of Conduct will likely be made by the University Conduct Board or an Administrative Hearing Officer. Some factors that may determine proposed sanctions are

    1. the judgment of the hearing officer(s) based on the report of the alleged violation
    2. the account of the student
    3. reports of witnesses or others involved in the case
    4. prior disciplinary history.

    Do I need a lawyer? What is the role of the advisor?

    Your school will likely say no to this, but you (generally) may have an attorney present if you choose for them to serve as an advisor. As an advisor, your lawyer may speak with you (the charged student) but may not speak for the charged student, act as attorney, nor otherwise participate. However your attorney should know whether anything the school is doing is improper and also make a determination to end the meeting if that is in the interest of Justice.

    Do I need witnesses?

    If there are witnesses that have relevant information, then you are encouraged to have them either be present or to provide a written statement (or video statement) if your school will allow.

    Schools generally do not want to hear from character witnesses. At this point, your character should not be in question, only the alleged behavior.

    Can I appeal a decision by the University Conduct Board or an Administrative Hearing?

    Generally, Yes. Also, generally, this must be done in writing within a certain amount of days.

    Everything you need to know about the, "Student Code of Conduct."

    Student Code of Conduct

    Schools expect that all students will conduct themselves in accordance with the Student Code of Conduct. This includes Students and any officially registered student organization. Generally, without even knowing it, as a condition of admission, you have already agreed to abide by all university policies contained in their Student Code of Conduct and other University publications and notices.

    FERPA / Privacy

    Generally, all violations of university policies documented in a student's conduct file are part of that student's educational record. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974 that provides confidentiality of students' educational records and protects these files and their contents. This confidentiality allows only persons who meet appropriate disclosure requirements to have access to these records. When conduct involves a crime of violence or sex offense, FERPA permits the School, College or University, at its discretion, to disclose to the complainant the results of a disciplinary proceeding against the alleged perpetrator.

    Established policies

    Most colleges and universities have established policies that are considered necessary to preserve and maintain an environment conducive to learning, to ensure the safety and welfare of members of the school community. When schools create their policies, they are not only binding you to their rules and regulations, but they are binding themselves as well to any procedural rules that are set forth in the Student Code of Conduct.

    Criminal / Civil Charges

    Procedures under a typical Student Code of Conduct may be carried out before, simultaneously with or following a civil or criminal proceeding on or off campus.


    Sanctions may be imposed against a student or registered student organization for the violation of any Student Code of Conduct policies that occurs on or off campus. Sanctions are intended to be developmental and educational in scope (but sometimes can be retaliatory, discriminatory, punitive or just plain personal) and are determined at the sole discretion of the School, College or University.

    On or Off Campus

    Most schools, colleges and universities reserve the right to discipline any student or remove affiliation with any registered student organization whose conduct on or off campus violates the Student Code of Conduct.

    Below is a list of Colleges and Universities in Florida where we represent Students

    State University System

    The Florida College System comprises twenty-eight community colleges and state colleges

    Other public institutions

    The State University System of Florida comprises twelve member universities

    Private colleges and universities

    Trade/technical institutions

    Private institutions

    State University System



    The Florida College System

    The Florida College System comprises twenty-eight community colleges and state colleges.


    Other public institutions

    Private colleges and universities

    Private institutions


    Religiously affiliated institutions

    Ave Maria University

    1. AdventHealth University (Orlando)
    2. Ave Maria University (Ave Maria)
    3. Baptist College of Florida (Graceville)
    4. Barry University (Miami Shores)
    5. Bethune–Cookman University (Daytona Beach)
    6. Covenant Life University (Fort Myers)
    7. Eckerd College (St. Petersburg)
    8. Edward Waters University (Jacksonville, Florida)
    9. Emmaus Baptist College (Brandon, Florida)
    10. Florida College (Temple Terrace)
    11. Florida Memorial University (Miami Gardens)
    12. Florida Southern College (Lakeland)
    13. University of Fort Lauderdale (Fort Lauderdale)
    14. Gordon–Conwell Theological Seminary (Jacksonville)
    15. Hobe Sound Bible College (Hobe Sound)
    16. Johnson University Florida (Kissimmee)
    17. Palm Beach Atlantic University (West Palm Beach)
    18. Pensacola Christian College (Pensacola)
    19. Reformed Theological Seminary (Orlando)
    20. Saint Leo University (St. Leo)
    21. St. John Vianney College Seminary (Miami)
    22. St. Thomas University (Miami Gardens)
    23. South Florida Bible College & Theological Seminary (Deerfield Beach)
    24. Southeastern University (Lakeland)
    25. Talmudic University Yeshiva Bais Moshe Chaim (Miami Beach)
    26. Trinity Baptist College (Jacksonville)
    27. Trinity College (New Port Richey)
    28. Warner University (Lake Wales)

    Trade/technical institutions

    CBT College – West Kendall Campus

    1. Acupuncture and Massage College (Miami)
    2. AdventHealth University (Orlando)
    3. Aerosim Flight Academy (Sanford)
    4. American College for Medical Careers (Orlando)
    5. Atlantic Institute of Oriental Medicine (Fort Lauderdale)
    6. City College (Fort Lauderdale)
    7. College of Business and Technology (Miami) a.k.a. “CBT College”
    8. Digital Media Arts College (Boca Raton)
    9. Dragon Rises College of Oriental Medicine (Gainesville)
    10. East West College of Natural Medicine (Sarasota)
    11. Everest University (Pompano Beach)
    12. Everglades University (Boca Raton)
    13. Florida Career College (Miami)
    14. Florida College of Integrative Medicine (Orlando)
    15. Florida Technical College (Cutler BayDeLandKissimmeeLakelandOrlando, and Pembroke Pines)
    16. Full Sail University (Winter Park)
    17. Jersey College (TampaJacksonville, and Fort Lauderdale)
    18. Jose Maria Vargas University (Pembroke Pines)
    19. Miami International University of Art & Design (Miami)
    20. Northwest Lineman College (Edgewater)
    21. Orlando Culinary Academy (Orlando)
    22. Remington College (Tampa)
    23. Ringling College of Art and Design (Sarasota)
    24. Southern Technical College (Orlando)


    Montgomery Law, LLC
    1420 Locust Street, Suite 420
    Philadelphia, PA 19102
    T/F. 215-650-7563

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    Joseph W Montgomery, II

    New Jersey

    Historic Smithville, Suite 1
    1 N. New York Road
    Galloway, NJ 08205
    (all mail to Phila. office)
    T. 856-282-5550

    Disclaimer: Montgomery Law, LLC does not give legal advice until after it has entered into an attorney-client relationship. No part of this website creates an attorney-client relationship. All Parts of this website are Attorney Advertising. The photos and videos on this website contain portrayals of clients by non-clients, re-enactment of scenes, pictures and persons which are not actual or authentic and depictions which are a dramatization.

    Florida School Discipline Lawyer - Education Lawyers and Attorneys that represent students in disciplinary issues involving Schools, Colleges and Universities. Plagiarism, Title IX Issues, Fraternity / Sorority Issues, Grade Disputes, Dismissals, Discrimination.