Campus misconduct proceedings can have devastating repercussions on a student’s life, academically and professionally. Because school policies don’t necessarily align with individual civil rights, it’s important to have proper representation. Throughout these challenging situations, our Campus Disciplinary Defense team stands by you, providing the support and counsel you need to be heard and treated fairly.

Our focus areas.

Accusations of sexual misconduct are always serious, wherever they happen. But certain procedural biases in university settings can give even non-criminal complaints credence that overshadows an individual’s constitutional rights. For that reason, legal counsel is invaluable even in situations where attorneys play no formal procedural role.

Charges of plagiarism, cheating, and similar academic misconduct can have ramifications well beyond the classroom. Campus disciplinary hearings may not carry legal weight, but a student’s investment of time and money can be wiped out with dismissal or expulsion. While the specifics of hearings are unique to each school, having the right attorney to help plan your defense is always a good idea. Our team can navigate the nuances of each school’s procedures.

When motivated by inappropriate bias, even seemingly trivial infractions can become serious. Because colleges and universities have a very low tolerance for allegations of bias-motivated misconduct, they will often discipline students to the fullest extent possible, up to and including criminal referrals. Solid legal support is essential so that each case can be heard and treated fairly.

Allegations of illegal drug use are among the most common that occur on and off university campuses. Most students are not dangerous drug users or distributors—they’re young adults testing the bounds of their freedom. But accusations can have major academic and criminal implications, so having an experienced attorney by your side can be important, if not essential, to your future.

Where most students are held up to one set of rules, college athletes are expected to play by another: the student-athlete handbook. Athletic eligibility can be called into question for everything from low GPAs to alcohol infractions, and that can put scholarships in jeopardy. Proper counsel is crucial to successfully navigating these issues.

Whether it’s rush week or the knighting of new rookies, hazing and bullying is usually motivated by a misguided desire for social acceptance. Banned from almost every college campus in the country, accusations of these humiliating acts can carry serious consequences. Enlisting an attorney will ensure your rights are upheld in this extremely grey area.

Digital and social media has become a fundamental part of life on college campuses. Given their ubiquity, inappropriate or misunderstood social media postings can spread quickly and become serious, and even criminal, matters. Rules vary wildly in this new and evolving area, so reliable legal counsel is extremely important.

Your dedicated team.

Jill employs innovative approaches and out-of-the-box thinking in providing her clients with the most effective representation possible.

Having litigated matters before judges, juries, and specialty boards, Jill focuses on reducing liability, ensuring due process, and protecting individual rights. Additionally, Jill leverages insights gained from overseeing the development of regulations, codes of conduct, and other guidance documents for more than 400 school districts in New York State.

State University of New York at Geneseo, B.S.

Syracuse University College of Law, J.D. Cum Laude, with a Certificate in Law, Technology and Management

Thorough preparation and a keen attention to detail are founding partner Tony Rupp’s hallmarks. With nearly 25 years of civil litigation experience to his name, Tony has been recognized with a host of industry honors. His passion for the law is matched only by his dedication to his clients.

University of Rochester, Magna Cum Laude

Cornell Law School, J.D. with a Concentration in Trial Advocacy

In addition to leading the firm’s Labor & Employment practice, Matt focuses on a remarkably diverse practice base. His wide range of experience makes him uncommonly well-prepared for even the most delicate and challenging academic disciplinary matters.

Hamilton College, B.A.

Penn State University – The Dickinson School of Law, J.D. with a Certificate in Dispute Resolution and Advocacy

Matt passionately represents both individual and institutional clients, providing him with a keen understanding of nuances that are invaluable in campus disciplinary defense. Matt relies heavily on the investigative skills he developed in anti-terrorist operations in the United States Navy, where he tirelessly worked to defeat threats to fundamental freedoms.

Ashford University, B.A., Cum Laude

State University of New York at Buffalo Law School, J.D.

“Rupp Baase Pfalzgraf Cunningham made sure that I finally received a fair result. Evidence was not being considered, and my side of the story was not being heard. Tony and Jill prevented a governing body from taking advantage of the facts, misapplying the law, and allowing unsupported allegations of misconduct to further damage my reputation.”

— Joanna, civil litigation client

“The policies on college campuses have changed a lot, and recently, for the better. But there are still fundamental rights that students have stripped away when they’re accused of wrongdoing, and that’s unsettling. Our team fights for fairness.”

— Tony Rupp, founding partner

“I believe that people who want to be able to protect their educational standing should be able to make their case.”

—Hanna Stotland, independent educational consultant

Their rules.
Your rights.
Our counsel.

Our team is here to support you through any type of campus disciplinary issue. Timeliness is crucial in these cases. To take the first step to protect your rights and your academic investment, fill out this short form. (Your privacy is incredibly important to us. Anything you share is completely confidential.)

If you have an urgent matter, please call Jill immediately at (716) 854-3400, extension 219.

Understanding The Impact Of Proposed Title IX Rule Changes On Student Rights.

When it comes to campus disciplinary action, students have long faced an uphill battle laden with unclear procedural rules. A late 2018 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking from the U.S. Department of Education seeks to right those wrongs by clarifying READ MORE…