Appealing A Misconduct Charge

bp shinners
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Re: Appealing A Misconduct Charge

Postby bp shinners » Tue Jun 07, 2011 2:38 pm

albanach wrote:
ChicagoBear wrote:Neither. The write up alleges that I fillled in an answer "after time was called but before pencils down was called." Take from that what you will.


That is also not what you described as having happened. You said that a buzzer sounded, not that time had been called. As I said above, per LSAC's own guidance, 'The supervisor will tell you when to start and stop work on each separately timed section.'


Yea, I was more in your favor until you posted this. From that write up, it sounds as if you heard the proctor say "Time is up, pencils down" and started filling in a bubble during the comma. It sounds like you're trying to rules-lawyer your way out of it (not saying you were, just how that description makes it sound).

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suspicious android
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Re: Appealing A Misconduct Charge

Postby suspicious android » Tue Jun 07, 2011 2:51 pm

Key detail in the story changes, not a good sign. However, to be honest, when I've taken the test it's very, very common to see people bubbling stuff in for an extra 1-2 seconds. No idea how it'll work out for you, wouldn't really be surprised either way, but I imagine it'll be a stressful couple of weeks till you find out.

ChicagoBear
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Re: Appealing A Misconduct Charge

Postby ChicagoBear » Tue Jun 07, 2011 3:35 pm

I don't think any detail in my story changed, as I said this from the get go:
It involves me filling in one guess answer between the buzzer going off and the proctor saying "pencils down." It was a split second decision, and it was quick enough that I actually filled it in a bubble that was not part of the test (i.e. #27 in a 26 test section).


Yes, that was a tricky and purposely amibiguous way to describe the situation. The reason I didn't imply that the proctor claims to have called time and then have me keep writing is that I do not whether he believes that. Based on the conversations that I had with him, I think there is a very good chance that he is referring to the buzzer going off when he says that I wrote after "time was called." That said, the only written record of what he says makes no reference to whether "time was called" refers to him physically calling time or the buzzer going off.

I do know that if it is the former, then I believe that he is mistaken. For one, there was no comma between "That's time, pencils down." They were spoken in an essentially continuous manner. Secondly, I didn't even finish filling in the bubble, and it had been the correct answer on an actual test, I don't think my mark would be enough to register. The idea that I decided to risk getting expelled from the test but I didn't even bother to finish bubbling in the answer doesn't make much sense. Finally, I know that is not the case because I was there. I know that I quit bubbling the instant that time was called. The incomplete bubble shows that. The fact that I chose the wrong question to bubble without going back shows that. Plus, I know you do not know me and have no reason to believe me, but I would never cheat and did not cheat.

The reason why I did not give the complete story is simple. For one, there is always the fact that the proctor or the person at LSAC who will eventually decide my fate could be reading. My story is fairly unique, and I did not want to raise the possibility of angering people who could help me but getting into a "he said v. he said" debate when it did not necessarily exist. Plus, I never intended the focus of this entire thread to be on my situation. I was hoping that people would have some information on how this works, and my goal was to receive said information.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Appealing A Misconduct Charge

Postby CanadianWolf » Tue Jun 07, 2011 3:45 pm

You're arguments are weak & seem to contradict the actions of the proctor & supervisor.

The alarm or buzzer will probably be viewed as an extra precaution to prevent test takers from writing after the time limit. In my opinion, your wishful thinking is clouding your judgment. Whether or not you intended to cheat is not the issue, nor is it relevant whether or not your actions resulted in an actual score increase. The issue is whether or not you wrote on your exam paper after time was called. You seem to want to argue about the manner in which time was called, but your story has changed. You need to deal with the charge as written. If a video & audio recording is available, then you may have an argument depending upon what the tapes reveal; otherwise, it is your word versus the protor & your reasoning, arguments & presentation--as shown in this thread--are likely to harm your cause.

gens1tb
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Re: Appealing A Misconduct Charge

Postby gens1tb » Tue Jun 07, 2011 4:07 pm

In my opinion, you should get out of the mindset that your actions not providing you any benefit really matters, nor does your intentions at the time. Especially when you're forming tones for how to defend your position. I also wouldn't rely on that proctor to tell a different story if an inquiry pops up. I'd expect him to defend exactly what he put on the sheet of paper, no matter how nice he seemed after the fact.

Is the lack of detail (if the story happened as you say), by a proctor in writing the summary of a misconduct normal?


LSAC provides pdfs on their rules covering misconduct, i'd probably brush up on those.

ChicagoBear
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Re: Appealing A Misconduct Charge

Postby ChicagoBear » Tue Jun 07, 2011 4:18 pm

Wolf, I really don't think that my story has changed at all. There may be some ambiguities that I have straightened out, but that wasn't out of some desire to mislead, but instead out of respect for the privacy of those involved in the situation (myself included). I did, though, go out of my way to make sure that my wording was never false, so I am truly sorry if I wasted your time by leading you to give me advice on a situation that you view as untrue.

If I have to argue that the accusation should be lifted, I certainly won't do it by trying to give as little information as possible (like I tried to do at the start of this thread). I do believe that if I am given a forum to state my case, whether in writing or on the phone, I will be able to do so effectively. After all, the truth is with me. I did not cheat, and I believe that the full scope of the evidence supports that.

For me, though, this thread is very unfortunate. I did not want to, at any point, publicly display my opinion on the matter. It is easy to forget that even in these non-professional environments we can encounter the people that make the professional decisions that shape our lives.

Therefore, I am not going to be posting in this thread anymore unless it applies to the contents of my original post (namely, how do you go about appealing a misconduct charge and how long will it take). Thanks for the opinions, everyone, and it is really appreciated that you guys tried to help me in a moment of need with your advice.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Appealing A Misconduct Charge

Postby CanadianWolf » Tue Jun 07, 2011 4:54 pm

Good luck. But you still seem to be missing the issue. "Intending to cheat" is not relevant.

Whatever occurs, remember, that this is a very minor infraction. The worst that is likely to happen if the charge sticks is that your score is voided & you have to explain this on your law school applications & to any state bar to which you apply.

The best outcome would be for a warning or, possibly--but not likely, a dismissal of the charge.

Don't complicate matters by accusing others or being untruthful. Be respectful & hope for the best.

ChicagoBear
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Re: Appealing A Misconduct Charge

Postby ChicagoBear » Thu Jun 23, 2011 10:50 pm

Following up to this thread, I got a letter today that stated that the LSAC decided not to pursue the matter.

To add a more general message to this thread, though, much of the pessimism expressed by earlier posters in this thread is misguided when it comes to misconduct reports. There is no assumption of guilt, and it isn't like it is easy for the LSAC to pursue a misconduct charge. Along with the original evaluation (which apparently is where they decided not to pursue the allegation against me), for a case to go on one's resume, it has to be evaluated by a seperate misconduct and irregularities board. People are given a month warning beforehand, and are allowed to come up with a defense for the committee to read. You can also request to defend yourself over the phone.

In other words, you shouldn't cancel your scare the instant you get written up, as some suggested earlier in this thread. It also doesn't mean that the world will end. It is a long process to get on your permanent resume, and you have ample time to defend yourself. There is no need to appeal, as you are automatically given a chance to defend yourself. While the waiting was certainly stressful, the situation was handled very well and was certainly not the bureaucratic mess that I expected. Now, my stress can get transferred to worrying about my actual score.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Appealing A Misconduct Charge

Postby CanadianWolf » Thu Jun 23, 2011 11:33 pm

Based on your postings in this thread, you were lucky to have the charge dismissed.

In practice, attorneys often have to offer opinions as to whether one should settle or take a chance at trial.
Canceling so as to render the issue moot would have looked like a great option had the review committee pursued the charge. Retaking the LSAT is commonplace & not a big deal, but explaining a disciplinary infraction to law schools & state bars is, however. Regardless, it's great that everything worked out well for you.

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Jeffort
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Re: Appealing A Misconduct Charge

Postby Jeffort » Fri Jun 24, 2011 12:59 am

ChicagoBear wrote:Following up to this thread, I got a letter today that stated that the LSAC decided not to pursue the matter.

To add a more general message to this thread, though, much of the pessimism expressed by earlier posters in this thread is misguided when it comes to misconduct reports. There is no assumption of guilt, and it isn't like it is easy for the LSAC to pursue a misconduct charge. Along with the original evaluation (which apparently is where they decided not to pursue the allegation against me), for a case to go on one's resume, it has to be evaluated by a seperate misconduct and irregularities board. People are given a month warning beforehand, and are allowed to come up with a defense for the committee to read. You can also request to defend yourself over the phone.

In other words, you shouldn't cancel your scare the instant you get written up, as some suggested earlier in this thread. It also doesn't mean that the world will end. It is a long process to get on your permanent resume, and you have ample time to defend yourself. There is no need to appeal, as you are automatically given a chance to defend yourself. While the waiting was certainly stressful, the situation was handled very well and was certainly not the bureaucratic mess that I expected. Now, my stress can get transferred to worrying about my actual score.


Congratulations that you avoided getting a misconduct scarlet letter put on your CAS report.

Instead of confessing, freaking out, lashing out at others and changing your story several times to a bunch of anonymous strangers on the internet in the 24 hours after the test, you instead could have received all the procedural information you wanted and now have (that you posted above) by reading documents on the LSAC web page or by calling them and asking. Instead of pleading your case on TLS you could have called LSAC Tuesday morning June 7th and received all that procedural info in minutes. If the phone person didn't have the info handy, they would have gotten it and called you right back with it.

Once you get to LS, study up on strict liability, procedure, due process and especially the 5th amendment and Miranda rights. When it comes to possibly being in big trouble that can haunt you for a while, you don't go talking about it in a public forum and asking advice about how to deal with it from anon strangers in a public internet forum.

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glucose101
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Re: Appealing A Misconduct Charge

Postby glucose101 » Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:37 am

Jeffort wrote:Congratulations that you avoided getting a misconduct scarlet letter put on your CAS report.

Instead of confessing, freaking out, lashing out at others and changing your story several times to a bunch of anonymous strangers on the internet in the 24 hours after the test, you instead could have received all the procedural information you wanted and now have (that you posted above) by reading documents on the LSAC web page or by calling them and asking. Instead of pleading your case on TLS you could have called LSAC Tuesday morning June 7th and received all that procedural info in minutes. If the phone person didn't have the info handy, they would have gotten it and called you right back with it.

Once you get to LS, study up on strict liability, procedure, due process and especially the 5th amendment and Miranda rights. When it comes to possibly being in big trouble that can haunt you for a while, you don't go talking about it in a public forum and asking advice about how to deal with it from anon strangers in a public internet forum.


+1

ChicagoBear
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Re: Appealing A Misconduct Charge

Postby ChicagoBear » Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:48 am

Jeffort wrote:
ChicagoBear wrote:Following up to this thread, I got a letter today that stated that the LSAC decided not to pursue the matter.

To add a more general message to this thread, though, much of the pessimism expressed by earlier posters in this thread is misguided when it comes to misconduct reports. There is no assumption of guilt, and it isn't like it is easy for the LSAC to pursue a misconduct charge. Along with the original evaluation (which apparently is where they decided not to pursue the allegation against me), for a case to go on one's resume, it has to be evaluated by a seperate misconduct and irregularities board. People are given a month warning beforehand, and are allowed to come up with a defense for the committee to read. You can also request to defend yourself over the phone.

In other words, you shouldn't cancel your scare the instant you get written up, as some suggested earlier in this thread. It also doesn't mean that the world will end. It is a long process to get on your permanent resume, and you have ample time to defend yourself. There is no need to appeal, as you are automatically given a chance to defend yourself. While the waiting was certainly stressful, the situation was handled very well and was certainly not the bureaucratic mess that I expected. Now, my stress can get transferred to worrying about my actual score.


Congratulations that you avoided getting a misconduct scarlet letter put on your CAS report.

Instead of confessing, freaking out, lashing out at others and changing your story several times to a bunch of anonymous strangers on the internet in the 24 hours after the test, you instead could have received all the procedural information you wanted and now have (that you posted above) by reading documents on the LSAC web page or by calling them and asking. Instead of pleading your case on TLS you could have called LSAC Tuesday morning June 7th and received all that procedural info in minutes. If the phone person didn't have the info handy, they would have gotten it and called you right back with it.

Once you get to LS, study up on strict liability, procedure, due process and especially the 5th amendment and Miranda rights. When it comes to possibly being in big trouble that can haunt you for a while, you don't go talking about it in a public forum and asking advice about how to deal with it from anon strangers in a public internet forum.


I couldn't agree with the main point of that more. I was definitely really stupid in this thread, as I went from hoping to get a few procedural questions answered to slowly letting out more details of a situation that I should have kept private. I'll learn from this, and hopefully not be so impatient as to risk dire consequences with no real benefit.




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