Appealing University of Oregon Student Conduct Hearing to Court – Writ of Review - Arnold Law in Eugene, Oregon – Powerful Advocacy. Proven Results.

Appealing University of Oregon Student Conduct Hearing to Court – Writ of Review

09.29.2015 – Jessica May and Janet Holcomb

Going to and losing a so called student conduct “hearing” at the University of Oregon or Oregon State University may have devastating consequences. The attorneys at Arnold Law have experience in challenging this process from the university conference and then university appeal all the way up to Oregon Circuit Courts.

An Oregon University expulsion, suspension or other discipline is appealable to an independent Oregon Court

ORS 34.020 states that “any party to any process or proceeding before or by any inferior court, officer, or tribunal may have the decision or determination thereof reviewed for errors…” A writ of review is allowed in all cases in which a substantial interest of a plaintiff has been injured and an inferior court including an officer or tribunal other than an agency as defined in ORS 183.310(1) in the exercise of judicial or quasi-judicial functions appears to have exceeded its jurisdiction, failed to follow the procedure applicable to the matter before it, made a finding not supported by substantial evidence in the record, improperly construed the applicable law, or rendered a decision that is unconstitutional. ORS 34.040.

A student is a party to a process (subject to the Special Administrative Conference administered by the University of Oregon). The University of Oregon is a party and eligible for this process, as the University of Oregon administers the Special Administrative Conference. The University of Oregon, in this capacity, is therefore considered an officer or a tribunal. As a result of a student being a party to a proceeding conducted by an officer or tribunal, he has been injured and may thus file a writ or review to get judicial relief from a University of Oregon sanction.

Furthermore, by conducting a Special Administrative Conference, making a finding of responsibility, and imposing sanctions, the University of Oregon exercises quasi-judicial functions. “A judicial or quasi-judicial function is one that involves or requires an adjudicatory process.” Koch v. City of Portland, 306 Or. 444, 448 (1988).  “A typical adjudicatory process results in a decision, applies pre-existing criteria to concrete facts and is directed at a closely circumscribed factual situation or a relatively small number of persons.” Id.

A decision is made by the University of Oregon to notice a student that he had possibly violated the Student Conduct Code. A decision is made again by the University when a student is found responsible for a violation of the Student Conduct Code and sanctions are imposed. A decision is made yet again by the University when the University denies a student’s appeal. These decisions are reached after the University applies pre-existing criteria, namely the Student Conduct Code.

Consequently, a writ of review is available to a student who was a party to a proceeding conducted by an officer or tribunal who injured a student in its exercise of a quasi-judicial act.

Don’t let the University of Oregon have all the control: Hire an attorney and take them and the Oregon Student Conduct Code to court

It’s important to remember that the process does not stop with the University. It’s a bias and unfair system that needs to be challenged in court.  Due process is a constitutional right.  The attorneys at Arnold Law may be able to assist you in this process as we have done for others. Call 541-338-9111 for more information or fill out the form to the left (or chat to the right).

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