Tag Archives: sexual assault claims

Investigating Sexual Assault Claims – Even Private Colleges Are Vulnerable

E. Jason Tremblay

E. Jason Tremblay

A recent Tennessee federal jury case involving a private university reminds the academy of the critical need to balance fairly the interests of the accused and accuser in investigating sexual assault cases. While private colleges and universities are not strictly obligated to follow the 14th Amendment due process restraints as are their public counterparts, their procedures must nonetheless be fair, balanced, and evenly applied. If not, the school can be liable, not just in contract for failing to follow its own rules (whatever they may be), but also in tort if actions taken are not reasonable and cause harm. On this basis, an institution can find itself both remediating a procedural failing and paying unlimited damages for emotional distress and similar non-contractual harms.

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