Sixth Circuit—Not Allowing Some Cross-X is “Risky Business”

The U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has just given us its views on yet another of the many Title IX scenarios winding up in the courts these days. It bears a review, because it offers some insights for both public and private schools about procedural considerations in Title IX hearings, whether in higher education or basic public education.

In this case, a higher education context, the male student and female student “crossed paths at a ‘Risky Business’ themed fraternity party. While there, they had a drink, danced, and eventually had sex.” The female student lodged a Title IX sexual misconduct complaint, and by the end of the internal institutional process, the University of Michigan ruled against the male student. While the Sixth Circuit panel’s ruling (with judges writing separately) is not binding in the federal courts covered by the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, its discussion informs those who are responsible for designing and implementing procedures in Title IX cases. Read what the Sixth Circuit judges had to say:  Slip Opinion