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Informal Resolution

When the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities receives a complaint that a student has allegedly violated the Code of Student Conduct, the office will contact the accused student(s) and request that they attend an informal resolution meeting with a case manager to discuss the allegations. The informal resolution meeting is not a hearing. It is a meeting between the student and a staff member. If an accused student does not attend the meeting without prior notice to OSRR, a decision may be rendered in the student's absence.

There are three (3) possible outcomes from an informal resolution meeting:

  1. The respondent is found to have no responsibility and/or that there is insufficient basis to proceed against the respondent. If that occurs, the case does not proceed to a hearing; or

  2. The respondent accepts responsibility and appropriate sanction(s) is/are agreed upon. If that occurs, the case is considered informally resolved; or

  3. The respondent does not accept responsibility and the case manager determines that the complaint warrants a hearing. If that occurs, the case proceeds to a formal hearing either before the University Conduct Board or an administrative hearing officer.

More information about the informal resolution process can be found in the Syracuse University Student Conduct System Handbook.


Procedural Advisors for Informal Resolution Meetings

Respondents may be advised during their meeting by a procedural advisor. Procedural advisors have no standing in the meeting and may not address the conduct case manager. Their role is to provide quiet advice in a non-disruptive manner to the respondent.

Persons who may serve as procedural advisors are limited to full-time students, faculty, and staff of Syracuse University. If a respondent is interested in obtaining a procedural advisor for their meeting, they may do one of the following:

  1. Ask any full-time Syracuse University student, faculty, or staff to serve as their procedural advisor;
  2. Reach out to their home school or college to seek procedural advice or other support;
  3. Request a trained procedural advisor from the Office of Student Assistance who may be available to provide procedural advice and support. Assignment of a procedural advisor from the Office of Student Assistance is based on availability and is not guaranteed. Requests for a procedural advisor should be made at least 72 hours prior to the scheduled informal resolution meeting via email to studentassistance@syr.edu.
Please note that parents/guardians are not permitted to attend informal resolution meetings and are not permitted to serve as procedural advisors.

Role of Attorneys in Informal Resolution Meetings

The following information regarding the role of attorneys in the student conduct process pertains to informal resolution meetings.

No attorney who is not also a full-time member of the Syracuse University faculty, staff, or student body will be permitted to participate in the conduct process on behalf of the respondent, except where criminal or civil proceedings are also pending against the respondent. When criminal or civil proceedings are pending the respondent may be advised by an attorney.

Attorneys for the respondent, when permitted to participate, are limited to the role of the procedural advisor. Procedural advisors, have no standing in University Student Conduct System proceedings, except to provide advice to their respective parties in a quiet, non-disruptive manner. Advisors, and attorneys when applicable, do not represent or speak for their respective parties. Any advisor who fails to conform their behavior to these requirements will be removed from the proceedings and barred from acting as a procedural advisor in future University Student Conduct System proceedings. In such circumstances the case manager will determine whether to proceed with the informal resolution meeting without the presence of the procedural advisor or to forward the case to the Director of Student Rights and Responsibilities who will determine if the case will be forwarded to the University Conduct Board for formal resolution. If a student has an attorney present at an informal resolution meeting, the University reserves the right to have one of its attorneys present as well.


Request for Review By Director

Once an informal resolution is reached, the decision is final and will only be revisited based on one or more of the following:

a. new information not reasonably available at the time of the informal resolution, the absence of which can be shown to have had a detrimental impact on the outcome of the informal resolution;

b. procedural error that can be shown to have had a detrimental impact on the outcome of the informal resolution;

c. errors in the interpretation of University policy so substantial as to deny fair informal resolution;

d. grossly inappropriate sanction having no reasonable relationship to the charges

In such a case, the student or student organization may submit a written petition for reconsideration of the case to the Director of the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities within three (3) business days of the informal resolution meeting. Requests for review must be written and signed by the student. The decision of the Director of the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities upon reconsideration is final.