Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Respondents

  • What is Prohibited Conduct at UMW?
  • What happens after a complainant makes a formal complaint to the University and names me as the respondent?
    • After the University receives a formal complaint, you will receive a written notice stating the allegations and providing a time for you to meet with the investigator to discuss the complaint. During the investigation, the investigator(s) will meet separately with the parties and other witnesses for statements.  The investigator will gather relevant and available information and evidence such as electronic records or communications, photographs, surveillance videos, records, or logs, and other evidence.  Throughout the investigation, the parties will have an equal opportunity to be heard, to provide evidence, to suggest witnesses to be interviewed, and to submit suggested questions to be directed by the investigator to each other or witnesses.
  • Can I bring an advisor to my interview with the investigator?
    • Yes, you may have an advisor throughout the investigation and hearing process. Your advisor will not be able to speak on your behalf during the meeting with the investigator, but they can support you throughout the process.
  • What happens after I meet with the investigator?
    • Once the investigator completes interviews with the parties and witnesses, the investigator will share all directly related evidence with you and you will have 10 days to provide a written response. Next, the investigator will provide the investigation report.  If a hearing will occur in your case, the investigation report will be provided at least 10 days in advance of the hearing.
  • Will there be a hearing?
    • In certain cases, there may be a hearing after the investigation. The Office of Title IX will inform you in writing if there will be a hearing in your case, and you can request a meeting with the Office of Title IX to discuss the process that applies to your case.  If there will be a hearing for the case, you may bring an advisor with you to assist you throughout the hearing.  If you do not have an advisor for the hearing, the University will provide one.  Please contact the Title IX Coordinator, Stefanie Lucas-Waverly, at slucaswa@umw.edu or (540) 654-5656, with questions about the hearing process.
  • Is there an informal resolution option that does not involve an investigation or hearing?
    • In many cases, informal resolution is available. Please contact the Title IX Coordinator, Stefanie Lucas-Waverly, at slucaswa@umw.edu or (540) 654-5656 to discuss informal resolution options.
  • I have been notified that I am a respondent in a current Title IX or Prohibited Conduct investigation. What resources are available to me?
    • A list of on and off campus resources is provided above as well as in the Respondent Resource Guide. If you have any questions about resources available to you or the options for any supportive measures and accommodations, please contact the Title IX Coordinator, Stefanie Lucas-Waverly, at slucaswa@umw.edu or (540)654-5656.
  • What rights do I have as a Respondent?
  • Who will be informed about the investigation I am involved in?
    • The Title IX Coordinator and the investigator recognize the sensitivity and personal nature of these types of incidents and will ask anyone sharing information during an investigation to respect the privacy of those involved. The Title IX Coordinator and the investigator only share information on a need-to-know basis.
  • Will my parents or family be told?
    • The Office of Title IX will not contact the parents or family of anyone involved in an investigation unless they are a witness with relevant information in cases of an investigation.  Further, if a parent contacts the Office of Title IX, we will not speak to them about a Prohibited Conduct matter without the permission of the student involved.  Information about Title IX for parents and families is available on UMW’s website.
  • What if I need academic support?
    • If either party requests academic support, the Office of Title IX may reach out to faculty on their behalf.
    • Academic support requests may include: arranging for the student to make up coursework or exams, identifying an alternative to a specific assignment or exam, allowing the student to withdraw, re-take, or have extra time to complete the course or its requirements without an academic or financial penalty.
  • Will my professors be notified that I was named as the Respondent in a report?
    • The Office of Title IX will only share limited information needed to effectuate a requested accommodation as the privacy of the parties is paramount. The University will notify the Respondent of any supportive measures that directly impact the Respondent.  Information related to a report of Prohibited Conduct is only shared with a limited number of UMW employees who “need to know” in order to assist in the assessment, investigation, and resolution of the report.
  • How long will this process take?
    • The University completes investigations in a prompt, fair, thorough, and impartial manner.
  • What is Retaliation?
    • Retaliation is strictly prohibited and UMW takes allegations of retaliation against anyone involved in the investigation very seriously. Retaliation is a violation of UMW’s Policy whether or not the underlying allegations of Prohibited Conduct are found to be a violation of University Policy, and Retaliation may result in disciplinary or other action independent of the sanctions or supportive measures imposed in response to the underlying allegations of Prohibited Conduct. Retaliation includes any acts or words that constitute intimidation, threats, harassment, and other adverse action taken or threatened against an individual because that individual reported or filed a complaint alleging any form of Prohibited Conduct or cooperated in the investigation of allegations of Prohibited Conduct, including testifying, assisting, or participating in any manner in an investigation.
  • My friend was accused of Sexual Assault or other Prohibited Conduct, what should I do?
    • Listen to your friend and don’t blame your friend or the student who brought the complaint. Be honest with your friend about how much support you can provide and refer your friend to resources.  A list of on campus and off campus resources and other information for your friend can be found in the Respondent Resources Guide.  Additionally, realize that you may also be affected and seek counseling if necessary.  Counseling for students is available through UMW’s Talley Center.  For employees, information about the Employee Assistance Program is available online.