Defend Against Academic Misconduct, Disputes & Appeals In Toronto & Canada Wide
Who We Are
Students often find themselves lost in the bureaucracy of the process of academic disputes, misconduct, appeals & petitions. AcademicLaw was founded to protect and defend you against any academic dispute you may be encountering. When it comes to academic disputes & appeals, the stakes are high as your reputation and future career is on the line – allow our professionals to defend you at such an integral time.
Our team of legal professionals specialize in the following kinds of academic disputes – no issue is too big or too small:
- Cheating on a test or exam
- Improper research practices
- Submitting forged or fake documentation
- And more…
We are also able to assist with non-academic disciplinary matters as well as preparing academic petitions such as:
- Deferring examinations
- Late withdrawals
- Deferred standing
Biography and Legal Experience in the Field of Academic Disputes
Adam Goodman practices in criminal and administrative law and has experience before all levels of court in Ontario as well as before various administrative boards and tribunals.
In addition to criminal law, Adam has developed a niche practice assisting clients facing allegations of academic dishonesty/misconduct and has assisted students at universities across the province, including:
- University of Toronto.
- York University.
- Ryerson University.
- University of Western Ontario.
- Wilfrid Laurier University.
- Northern Ontario School of Medicine.
- University of Guelph.
Adam has also assisted students with academic issues before professional colleges.
Adam is considered the best academic appeal lawyer in Canada. Adam has spoken on these issues at continuing professional development programs organized by the Law Society of Ontario and to criminal colleagues at the Destination CPD conference in Las Vegas, NV. Adam was also interviewed as part of the CBC Documentary “Faking the Grade”.
With academic disputes, the stakes are high – allow us to help defend you with achieving the best possible result. The sooner you contact us, the sooner we can protect you. We are available to assist at colleges and universities throughout Ontario and elsewhere in Canada.
The General Process of Academic Disputes
The procedures may differ by school/faculty but tend to follow this procedure:
- The student will meet with the Professor bringing the allegation.
- This will be followed by what is commonly called an exploratory meeting with an official appointed to investigate (usually called the Dean’s Designate). If the Dean’s Designate finds no wrongdoing, the matter will conclude. In many cases, the Dean’s Designate may apply a sanction and not refer the matter to a formal hearing.
- Following this meeting, should a case proceed further, there will be a formal hearing before a tribunal or committee.
- There will also be an appeals process if either party is not satisfied with the decision of the tribunal or committee.
- Judicial review of the final decision is possible depending on the circumstances.
The Benefits of Retaining Representation:
Academic appeals are highly technical in nature – students often find themselves lost in the bureaucracy of the process. Without proper guidance, students become overwhelmed and make poor choices as a result.
Exploratory meetings tend to be very formal and can result in a student being unprepared and making unnecessary admissions – evidence which can be used against them before the faculty committee or tribunal. Despite a faculty member claiming the initial meeting is meant to be informal, our experience is that they are not. With our team on your side, we can assure you that will be aware of what rights you have from the very first step.
Students often believe they just need to tell their side of the story and the process will be over. While this sometimes happens, the student usually does not fully grasp the allegation against them and may effectively help the university build a case against them. Through our years of experience dealing with academic disputes, we understand the relevant Codes of Conduct and know what the University needs to prove.
Sanctions can be quite severe and range from a transcript notation, a reduction in a grade, and suspension or expulsion from the University. Sanctions can be even more severe for repeat offenders, senior students, and those accused of more serious offences such as plagiarism, impersonation, purchasing an essay, etc. When considering how even a low or failing grade can affect a student’s ability to find work or be accepted to graduate or professional school, it becomes clear that the stakes are extremely high. Even in cases where a student’s guilt is clear, we can provide advice on minimizing the sanction.
Students are also at a disadvantage because they are being prosecuted by trained counsel who appear regularly before the relevant tribunal. The rules of evidence can make things even more difficult for a student who feels they have a strong argument to make.