This fall, new changes will be made regarding Title IX impacting all federally-funded schools, as the U.S. Department of Education has recently unveiled new regulations on implementing the law.

By: Kathryne Hemmings, Associate in G&E’s Civil Rights Practice

In April 2024, the Biden administration unveiled sweeping updates on how federally-funded schools will be required to handle claims under Title IX.

In part, the new rules broaden the definition of sexual assault and harassment, thereby allowing more claims to be investigated. The expanded definition will be applied in K-12 schools as well as colleges. Survivors will no longer be required to be cross-examined or attend live hearings. Schools affected by Title IX will also be required to adopt grievance procedures that provide for fair, prompt, and equitable resolution of complaints of sex discrimination. The updates also include stipulations on protections for members of the LGBTQ+ community if they are discriminated against due to their sexual orientation or gender identity, as well as to pregnant students and parents.

Put into effect on August 1, 2024, these new regulations serve to update amendments made in 2020 to Title IX regulations.

The origin of Title IX, however, goes back more than 50 years. When Congress passed Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, it was designed to protect women from being discriminated against in educational programs due to their gender, especially in college or university settings. It states, simply:

“No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subject to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”

Colleges and universities that receive federal funding are required by Title IX to adequately respond to complaints of sexual violence on their campuses. That protection extends to sexual assault, harassment, or any form of sexual misconduct. The newly expanded updates to Title IX aim to increase that protection for students by lowering the threshold of what schools must investigate.

Was Your Sexual Assault Claim Ignored by Your College or University? Contact Us Today to Discuss Your Potential Case

If you feel you have not been heard by your college or university, speak with an attorney experienced in Title IX proceedings. You are not alone in your journey. Your voice is important and deserves to be heard to bring justice and hold perpetrators accountable. We want to hear from you.

Kathryne Hemmings