Can you sue a school for accusations for violating alcohol regulations without evidence?

Asked about 1 year ago - 21740

A dean stated the students were guilty because usually students with slushy drinks is drinking alcohol. The incident report verified no alcohol was found, even by state police. Charges were put in student records. An appeal was filed and denied a hearing. The students asked for reason why appeal was denied in writing the dean responded, "you don't need it".

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Jason Carl Kennedy

    Contributor Level 13

    Answered . Quite possibly, yes. You might have either a contract claim or a tort claim. I cannot say which you have, if any, because I am not your attorney and I do not have all the information about your case.

    You probably have a contract with your school: you agree to pay tuition, and they agree to educate you. I'd imagine that the school sets up the contract in such a way that you also agree to subject yourself to the school's rules and disciplinary systems. By operation of law, most contracts impose a duty of "good faith and fair dealing." If the school knows that you were in class on a given day but disciplines you for being absent on that day, then they would likely be in violation of the duty of good faith in applying their disciplinary systems. So too, it is conceivable that IF the school knew that there was no alcohol in your case, then they may well be breaching the duty of good faith when disciplining you for consuming alcohol.

    You also might have a tort claim for libel or slander for communicating false and damaging information about you.

    Of course, all of this depends on how your state defines and applies these legal doctrines, so you may want to consult an attorney in your area.

    You may also want to consider picking and choosing your battles.

  2. Christine C McCall

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . In some circumstances you could sue, but it would be a waste of time. You would lose, and even in the anomalous circumstance where you didn't lose, you wouldn't win enough to cover the costs and fees for the suit. Or did you think that some attorney should do this work for free?

    No legal advice here. READ THIS BEFORE you contact me! My responses to questions on Avvo are never intended... more

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