Law School Rules

Chapter 12. Law Student Petitions And Appeals

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12.01 Initial Grievance Procedure.
 (1) The Associate Dean's office is the proper place for law students to bring grievances based on actions of Law School personnel or committees for an initial attempt at resolution of the grievance. If the grievance is not satisfactorily resolved in the Associate Deans' office, the aggrieved person may appeal to the Petitions Committee under the circumstances and within the limitations provided in this chapter.

(2) Complaints based upon alleged discrimination must comply with and be processed in accordance with UW-Madison Policies and Procedures for compliance with §36.12 Wisconsin Statutes. Section 36.12 Wisconsin Statutes prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, disability, ancestry, age, sexual orientation, pregnancy, marital status, or parental status of the student. The Associate Dean shall refer such complaints to the UW-Madison Office of Affirmative Action and Compliance (OAAC), in accordance with § 36.12. OAAC will register the complaint and refer it back to the Law School for consideration under Rule 12.05 herein. (Cross reference §12.05)

12.02 Petitions Committee. The Petitions Committee shall consist of three faculty members appointed by the Dean. The Committee may adopt its own procedures, including the requirement that appeals be made in writing.

12.03 Jurisdiction of Petitions Committee.
(1) Except as otherwise provided in these rules, the jurisdiction of the Petitions Committee is limited to making decisions on:
(a) Request for relief from a law school rule, based on allegations of unusual hardship, in a case where the Dean's office has considered the request and has determined that it is not empowered to act or will not act.
(b) Appeals based on alleged discrimination on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, disability, ancestry, age, sexual orientation, pregnancy, marital status, or parental status of the student.

(2) The Committee's jurisdiction does not extend to:

(a) Action taken by the law faculty acting as a whole.
(b) Action taken by the Admissions Committee directly affecting only an applicant for admission.
(c) Action taken by the Retentions Committee, except where the appeal is being taken under subsection (1)(b).
(d) Matters within the scope of the academic misconduct rules of the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

(3) When acting under subsection (1), the Committee may deny or grant the request in whole or in part, affirm or modify the action complained of, remand the case for further proceedings, or recommend action to the faculty. The Committee shall make its decision in writing and shall file a copy thereof in the Associate Deans' office.

12.04 Time Limitations on Appeals. The Petitions Committee shall summarily dismiss any appeal or request for relief, under §12.03(1)(a), brought more than 6 months after the occurrence of the event in issue.

12.05 Appeals Procedure under Section 12.03(1)(b).
 (1) Upon receiving the initial complaint from the UW-Madison Office of Affirmative Action and Compliance (OAAC), the Associate Dean shall have 10 calendar days to respond.

(2) A student wishing to file an appeal to the Petitions Committee under §12.03(1)(b) shall file such appeal within 15 calendar days of receipt of notification of the response of the Associate Dean. The Petitions Committee shall respond within 20 calendar days from receipt of the appeal.

(3) A student may appeal the decision of the Petitions Committee under §12.03(1)(b) to the faculty within 15 calendar days of notification of the Committee's decision, and the faculty shall respond to this appeal within 20 calendar days of receipt of the petition. The faculty decision shall be provided to the OAAC. For purposes of an appeal under this part, if an appeal to the faculty is taken at any time other than during the regular fall or spring semesters, ten faculty shall constitute a quorum.

(4) A student has a right of further appeal to the University of Wisconsin-Madison Office of Affirmative Action and Compliance. (Cross reference §12.05(6).)

(5) All appeals, complaints and decisions under §12.03(1)(b) shall be in writing and copies shall be provided to the OAAC in a timely manner.

(6) Cross reference: Students should be aware of the provisions of §36.12, Wisconsin Statutes, concerning student discrimination complaints. Complaints alleging a violation of §36.12 must be filed within 300 days of the alleged violation, with the University of Wisconsin-Madison Office of Affirmative Action and Compliance, or directly to the Associate Dean pursuant to the provisions of §12.01. (See Appendix E)

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