Attorneys

The purpose of this page is to provide you with important information about the UAF Student Code of Conduct and your role in the conduct process if you have been retained by a student at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Please keep in mind that the University conduct system is very different from the civil or criminal judicial system. The University's process is not adversarial; its purpose is to educate the student and contribute to his or her ethical growth.

Students are expected to act as their own advocates throughout the disciplinary process. Some students may choose to hire an attorney, but the attorney's role is limited to consultation. He or she may be present during all proceedings as a support person, but  may not address the Conduct Board or Hearing Officers, speak in Conduct hearing, or question witnesses. Students do not have a constitutional right to activate legal representation in the University disciplinary cases (see Hart v. Ferris State 557 F. Supp. 1379, 1386-88 (W.D. Mich, 1983)).

Q. I have been asked to represent a student accused of violating the Student Code of Conduct. How do I establish this with the University?

A. The student must notify the Dean of Students office in writing if he or she intends to have you attend the Conduct Hearing. This must be submitted no later than five (5) business days before a hearing or two (2) business days before a meeting. The student must also provide written authorization for you to have access to information about the case. A release authorization form is available here.

Q. What is the University's standard of proof?

A. The standard of proof in cases involving academic dishonesty is "by clear and convincing evidence." In all other cases, the standard is "by a preponderance of evidence."

Q. What is my role at your hearing?

A. The Student Code of Conduct permits attorneys to be present at all disciplinary meetings and hearings as a support person. A support person may not address Conduct Hearing board, speak at a Disciplinary Conference, or question witnesses. You may advise your client, provided your interaction does not disrupt the process.

Q. Can I get the hearing or meeting postponed?

A. The student may submit a written request for postponement no later than five (5) days prior to the Conduct hearing or two (2) days prior to a Disciplinary Review. The Conduct Board will determine whether the request will be granted.

Q. My client is charged with a crime off-campus. Can I get the proceedings delayed until the criminal matter is resolved?

A. The student may request a postponement, but pending criminal proceedings will not ordinarily serve as a basis to prostpone a student disciplinary proceeding. The purpose of the University's process is not to determine whether a student has violated the law; it is to determine whether a student violated the Student Code of Conduct.

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