» Title IX Hearing & Appeals Process FAQs

The following is a list of frequently asked questions that may be helpful for anyone who is or may involved in a Title IX hearing or appeals process following a Title IX investigation at Chapman University. Please also see the specific FAQs regarding the Title IX investigation process for general audiences, complainants, respondents, and witnesses.

+ - Why would a case go to a hearing?

Both the complainant and respondent (referred to as “the parties”) receive, in writing, the findings (if any) and any sanctions (if recommended) of an investigation in which it is alleged that the respondent may have violated University policies. At that time, both parties have an opportunity to review the findings and recommendations (if any) and determine whether they a) accept the findings and recommendations, or b) reject the findings and/or recommendations and request that the matter be referred to a formal administrative hearing for adjudication. If either party rejects the investigators’ recommendations, the case will go to a hearing.

For information on the investigation process, please see Investigation Procedures for Student(s)-to-Student(s) Complaints.

+ - Who are the hearing officers?

The hearing officers are trained members of the University community who will consider the alleged violations and determine, by a preponderance of the evidence, whether the respondent violated the Student Conduct Code. Hearing officers are selected by the Director of Student Conduct.

+ - Do I have to attend the hearing?

No, you are not required to attend in or participate in the hearing. However, doing so is very helpful to the hearing officers, known as the Board. The Board can only make a decision with information it has.

You can be present at the hearing but choose not answer questions from the Board.

+ - Will I be in the same room as the other person?

Unless requested by both parties, the parties will not be in the same room at the same time with the other person. If a party is participating in the hearing in person, each party will meet with the Board in person while the other person listens by telephone, Skype, videoconferencing, or similar technology. Each party may be accompanied by their support person in the hearing room. It is up to the complainant or respondent if either party wishes to view/listen other people via telephone, Skype, videoconferencing, or similar technology when they are meeting with the Board.

+ - Can I ask questions during the hearing?

The Board has final authority on what questions are asked during the hearing. Complainants and respondents will have the opportunity to provide the Board with questions they would like asked of the other party or of a witness. These questions must be submitted in writing and will be retained by the Board.

+ - What should I expect during the hearing?

During the hearing, the investigators will present the investigative report to the Board. Both the complainant and respondent will have the opportunity to provide an opening and closing statement. Additionally, the Board will ask any questions it has of the parties present (Investigators, complainant, respondent, witnesses).

+ - How long will the hearing last?

The length of the hearing depends on many factors, including if the complainant and respondent are participating, how many witnesses appear and the number of questions asked by the Board. You can expect the hearing to take at least a few hours. At times, if it is expected that the hearing will take an extended period of time, it may be spread over multiple days.

+ - How is the hearing date and time selected?

When selecting a hearing time, the respondent’s and complainant’s academic schedules, as well as the investigators, Board members, hearing coordinator’s and a hearing room’s availability are considered. 

+ - Can I have witnesses appear during the hearing?

You can request that witnesses participate in the hearing, but the University can only mandate that employee witnesses appear at or participate in the hearing.

Should a witness provide a written statement, it must be submitted directly from that person to the hearing coordinator. Written witness statements must also be submitted to the hearing coordinator 2 business days prior to the hearing.

If you would like to request that a witness be present at the hearing, you must request this no fewer than 2 business days before the hearing.

+ - Can I request that the hearing be rescheduled?

Yes, you may request that a hearing be rescheduled with no fewer than 2 business days’ notice. A request for rescheduling must include the reason you would like it to be rescheduled.

+ - Can I object to the hearing officers?

If you have concerns about a hearing officer’s ability to render a fair, impartial, and objective decision, you can email a request for removal to the hearing coordinator. Your request must detail why it is believed that the hearing officer should be removed. The Dean of Students or designee shall determine if the hearing officer in question can render a fair, impartial, and objective decision. Should a hearing officer be removed, another hearing officer may take the place of the removed hearing officer.

+ - How can I review unredacted versions of the documents or view video?

You can review unredacted versions of the documents by contacting the Dean of Students Office, your hearing coordinator, or the Title IX investigators.

+ - What information will the hearing officers have?

The Board will have the Title IX investigation report and any information listed as attachments in the Title IX investigation report. If you provided other information to the Investigators that was not included in the attachments, the Board will not have access to review it as part of the hearing unless you request it.

+ - What if I want the Board to have more information than what was listed in the report or included in the attachments?

Each party is able to provide the board with written statements and/or other information (witness statements, witness names). Should you believe that there is information (video, identification card use records, etc.) that is under the control of the University, you may request the information from the hearing coordinator, no later than 2 business days prior to the hearing.

+ - What can I expect after the hearing?

The Board members will take time to deliberate and reach their conclusions. They will write a hearing outcome letter that is formatted similarly to the Title IX investigation report. After they have completed the hearing outcome letter, it will be sent to both parties simultaneously. If you wish, you can request that a hearing officer goes over the hearing outcome with you prior to emailing the hearing outcome or you can request that the hearing outcome is simply emailed to you.

Should you have questions after the hearing, please contact the Title IX Coordinator, the investigators or your hearing coordinator.

+ - When will I receive the hearing outcome?

The Board will carefully consider the information it has and will take an appropriate amount to time to deliberate. The Board is aware that this is a difficult time for all students involved and will endeavor to make its decision and complete the hearing outcome letter as quickly as possible.