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Illinois Title IX Athletics Lawyer

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 protects students from discrimination based on sex, including sexual harassment and violence. Colleges and universities receiving federal funding must follow Title IX mandates. Violations are serious matters and are not to be swept under the rug. From filing a claim to recovering compensation, an experienced Title IX athletics lawyer from the Mahoney Law Firm can help you navigate the legal system.

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    Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 is a civil law prohibiting federally funded colleges and universities from discriminating against students based on sex. This includes pregnancy, sexual orientation, and gender identity. The terms are often associated with athletics, but the law also includes academic programs. In addition, the laws have been expanded to include sex-based harassment, which encompasses sexual assault and other forms of sexual violence.

    If you or your child have experienced sex or gender identity discrimination in collegiate athletics, a Title IX athletics lawyer from the Mahoney Law Firm can help explain your legal rights and hold schools liable for discrimination or harassment.

    Why Clients Trust Us

    • We offer compassionate legal representation to student athletes throughout Illinois and across the Midwest. Our attorneys truly care about the people they represent.
    • Our Title IX athletics attorneys have more than 16 years of experience. We have recovered over $100 million in verdicts and settlements for clients.
    • We take Title IX violation cases on a contingency fee basis. This means you won’t pay your attorney unless we win your case.

    What Is Title IX?

    Title IX is found in the Education Amendments of 1972. In basic terms, it protects students from sex-based harassment and discrimination in educational programs and activities, including sports. Title IX covers a wide scope within student athleticism, including admissions, recruiting, counseling, employment and various aspects of the student’s education.

    In the context of school athletics, Title IX made great strides in terms of gender equity in sports. It mandates that all educational institutions that operate on federal funding must provide equal opportunities for both male and female students to participate in sports. In addition, it prohibits sex-based discrimination in all aspects of a sports program, including scheduling, coaching, scholarship opportunities and the provision of athletic equipment.

    Gender equity is not the only protection offered to athletes by Title IX. Student athletes are also protected from various sexual harassment, assault and abuse behaviors. Under Title IX, educational institutions are required to establish specific procedures for addressing complaints of sexual harassment or abuse in athletics. This includes providing a way for students and employees to report violations and seek timely resolutions from school administrators.

    Understanding Discrimination and Harassment in Athletics

    Title IX protections for student-athletes include acts of discrimination and harassment based on sex. Sex or gender discriminatory conduct in athletics includes:

    Sex or gender harassment conduct also has several subcategories, which include but aren’t limited to:

    How Title IX Has Impacted Colleges and Universities

    Colleges and universities are required by federal law to publish and implement policies to prevent discriminatory and harassing incidents. They must also implement defined responses to complaints and reports. To prove compliance, schools file annual reports tracking revenues, expenses, participation, scholarships, and salaries among coaching staff by gender.

    The law also requires schools to appoint a Title IX coordinator to ensure that the school satisfactorily meets requirements. Additionally, all students and staff are to be notified of the name and contact information of that Title IX appointee.

    Insitutions Under dating violence Title IX rules, public educational institutions are required to take the following actions:

    In 1979, the U.S. Department of Education published the Intercollegiate Athletics Policy Interpretation, which included the “three-prong test”—a test used to assess a school’s satisfactory compliance with Title IX mandates. Colleges and universities prove their compliance in any one of three ways:

    1. Proportional participation: The number of students participating in an athletic program is proportional to the school’s total student population. For example, if a school’s student body is 50 percent male and 50 percent female, student participation in athletic programs is also 50/50.
    2. Good-faith practice of expanding opportunities: Schools are Title IX compliant when they provide equal opportunities for female athletic participation aligned with male involvement. That means there must be just as many opportunities to engage in female sports as in male athletic programs.
    3. Interest accommodation of the underrepresented sex/gender: If a school determines that the underrepresented sex—often female—is content with having less opportunity for athletic participation, the school is Title IX compliant—even if they don’t meet the first and second prong. Sometimes this happens when the student population is generally uninterested in sports or within schools that provide many other nonathletic clubs and programs. However, schools must satisfactorily survey and seek input from the underrepresented sex to make this conclusion.

    The scope of Title IX has been expanded over the years to cover more than basic discrimination. In now aims to prevent and provide redress for the following conduct:

    Legal Remedies Available to Athletes Under Title IX

    Colleges and universities receiving federal funding are responsible for compliance with Title IX and risk losing funding for noncompliance. You’re entitled to seek justice if you have been discriminated against based on sex.

    File a Complaint on Your Own

    If a school has violated your or your child’s rights per Title IX, you can file a complaint with the Office for Civil Rights. If you’re a parent, you can file for your child, even if the child is over 18.

    File the complaint within 180 days of the last date of discrimination or harassment. If you file after 180 days, you must prove why your claim is late.

    Also, contact your school’s Title IX coordinator and determine the procedures for Title IX complaints. While you can file a complaint with the Office for Civil Rights and file a grievance with your school, you are not legally required to do both. However, if you choose both routes, you must file the Office for Civil Rights complaint within 60 days of the school’s complaint policy process.

    Work With a Title IX Athletic Lawyer

    You are not required to obtain a lawyer if you file a complaint, but many choose this option due to the sensitive nature and circumstances of the matter. A skilled lawyer can ensure you are treated fairly during the process.

    An experienced Title IX athletics lawyer knows how to correctly file a claim according to legal requirements and will do so on time. You benefit from this because avoidable but present errors on your complaint could delay the process unnecessarily.

    You can have legal representation during all hearings and investigations, which may have criminal aspects and police involvement This applies particularly to sexual assault in sports.

    Title IX is one of the Education Amendments made to the Civil Rights Act of 1964, so violations may overlap with other areas of law. Your attorney can identify and use those functional overlaps to help build an even stronger case for you.

    Benefits of Hiring a Title IX Athletics Lawyer

    You are better positioned for a favorable legal outcome in your case when you hire a Title IX athletics lawyer. See how hiring a knowledgeable, compassionate, and dedicated attorney can benefit you and your child.

    Protecting Your Rights as an Athlete

    All students, regardless of gender, are entitled to equal opportunities, scholarships, and participation as student-athletes. You have the right to equal practice time, facilities, equipment and supplies, scheduling of practices and games, and travel allowances. You also have the right to fair treatment when you file a claim and support, such as free counseling or adjustments to your class schedule. If your school fails to take the appropriate measures, a Title IX athletic lawyer can take further legal action, protecting your due process rights throughout investigations and hearings.

    Representing You During Legal Proceedings

    Once you file your complaint, your school must promptly investigate your claim. You have the right to a live hearing, an impartial finding based on evidence, and an equal opportunity to appeal an unfavorable ruling. There are complicated legal steps involved in the process, and a lawyer can help you understand all of them.

    If you pursue a civil lawsuit, your Title IX athletics lawyer represents you at each court hearing.

    Providing You and Your Family Guidance and Support

    It’s not an easy decision to go up against a big institution. Some student-athletes may fear losing their scholarship or place on the team if they file a claim. There’s a lot of uncertainty at stake. You have questions that need answers, and having an empathetic, experienced lawyer by your side can help make the process far less confusing and intimidating.

    Attorney Ryan Mahoney has a solid reputation for strong litigation skills, fighting for clients’ rights against schools and law enforcement. Mr. Mahoney offers a personalized approach to your case and will answer any questions you have during the process. You deserve justice, and the Mahoney Law Firm will support and guide you from start to finish.

    Steps You Should Take if You Have Been Subjected to a Title IX Violation

    If you suffered a Title IX violation, it is important to address the issue by taking specific steps. Taking the correct actions to file a complaint and pursue legal recourse can protect your rights. If you can, here’s what to do:

    1. Remain calm and get medical care. If the incident involved a physical or sexual assault, get medical care for your injuries.
    2. Document everything. Keep copies of all records, documents and communications. This may include texts, emails, photographs and a written description of events.
    3. Review your school’s Title IX policies. There should be a specific protocol in place for how to file a complaint with administrators at your educational institution.
    4. Cooperate with the investigative process. After you submit a written complaint, your Title IX coordinator should guide you through an investigation.
    5. Seek support. Get the physical, mental and emotional support you need by consulting with a counselor or therapist as well as confiding in friends, family or a support group.
    6. Take formal action. You have the right to file a complaint with the Office for Civil Rights within 180 days of the last Title IX violation to seek a resolution.
    7. Understand your rights. You have the right to a fair and unbiased investigation. If you believe a school is not handling things correctly, consult with an attorney.
    8. Get help from a lawyer. If your rights are being violated as a student athlete and you are not satisfied with how the school is handling it, contact an attorney with experience in Title IX matters for help.

    An attorney from Mahoney Law Firm can help you explore all of the legal options available to you as a wronged student athlete, which may include bringing a lawsuit against an educational institution for failing to protect you from discrimination, harassment or assault. As your attorneys, we will guide you through the steps of seeking justice.

    Work With a Title IX Athletics Lawyer From the Mahoney Law Firm

    If you or someone you know has a Title IX case in Illinois, it’s essential to seek legal representation from experienced professionals who can navigate the law’s complexities. You’re entitled to a timely investigation and fair treatment during hearings. A Title IX athletics lawyer will walk you through the legal process and uphold your rights.

    Mahoney Law Firm has a proven track record of successfully handling Title IX athletic cases and can provide the guidance and support needed to achieve a fair and just outcome. Contact the Mahoney Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how they can help you navigate the Title IX process.

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