- Chapter One — Statement of Purpose, Ideals
- Chapter Two — Scope
- Chapter Three — Prohibited Conduct
- Chapter Four — Administration of the Code
- Chapter Five — Filing of Complaint, Preliminary Examination
- Chapter Six — The Hearing
- Chapter Seven — Determination of Guilt or Innocence, Sanctions, Opinion of the Court
- Chapter Eight — Time Limitations
- Chapter Nine — Rehearing
- Chapter Ten — Amendment or Repeal
- Chapter Eleven — Severability
- Chapter Twelve — Effective Date of Revised Code
Chapter One — Statement of Purpose, Ideals
1.01 The purpose of this honor code is to establish the rules by which the students of the University of San Diego School of Law shall be governed with respect to any conduct relating to academic matters. The success or failure of an honor code is dependent on the willingness of those governed by the code to enforce it. If the honor code is to be effective, each student must make a commitment to comply individually with its provisions and must accept the responsibility of assuring compliance by other students. A student’s sense of justice and integrity should obligate him or her to report violations of the code in order to preserve the academic integrity of the law school.
Chapter Two — Scope
2.01 This honor code applies to any academic matter pertaining to the University of San Diego School of Law.
2.02 “Academic matter” means any student activity which may affect a grade or any law school-related extracurricular activity of a professional nature such as law review, moot court competitions and legal clinic, or any activity which in any way contributes toward the satisfaction of the requirements for graduation, without reference to the locus of such activity. Academic matters shall include but shall not necessarily be limited to the following: (a) Any examination; (b) Any research or other assignment to be done for a course; (c) Any work which is in whole or partial satisfaction of requirements to receive credit for participation in any activity for which credit is given. (d) Any conduct relating to the use and enjoyment of study materials.
2.03 For the purposes of this honor code an individual shall be deemed a “student” from the time of his or her initial registration at the School of Law until he or she receives a law degree or formally withdraws from the law school.
2.04 The court shall have jurisdiction over any matter involving a student who allegedly violates any provision of Chapter Three of this honor code provided: A written complaint is filed against the student and the student receives formal notice by certified mail of the filing of the complaint while still a student.
Chapter Three — Prohibited Conduct
3.01 In any academic matter it shall be a violation of the honor code to engage in any of the following: (a) To use materials: (1) In an exam, other than those specifically authorized by the instructor, (2) In research or other writing assignments, which are specifically forbidden by the instructor. (b) To submit as one’s own work, the work of another. (c) To fail to comply with academic rules relating to honestly and integrity, as applied to examinations, research or assignments. (d) To make any material misrepresentation as to work toward satisfaction of the minimum requirements for grade or credit any activity for which credit is given. (e) To intentionally tear, mutilate, deface or destroy any University of San Diego library materials or other study materials made available to students by the University of San Diego School of Law, to hide same or to intentionally remove library materials from the University of San Diego libraries without compliance with circulation policies prescribed by library rules.
3.02 In addition to the violations enumerated in section 3.01 it shall be a violation of the honor code for any person to engage in any fraudulent or dishonest conduct which tends to gain for that person or another person an unfair advantage in any academic matter.
3.03 It shall be a violation of the honor code to fail to give testimony true to the best of one’s knowledge or belief or to produce evidence, when requested to do so by any party or by the Honor Court, in any investigation or proceeding authorized by the honor code, provided, however, no person shall be required to be a witness against himself.
Chapter Four — Administration of the Code
4.01 The provisions of the Honor Code shall be administered by a body entitled “The Honor Court of the University of San Diego School of Law,” hereinafter referred to as the “Honor Court.” (a) The Honor Court shall consist of: (1) Six justices, three of whom shall be members of the faculty, and three of whom shall be students. (2) A First Alternate and Second Alternate Student Justice. (4) The Honor Court counsel. (5) A student preliminary examiner and a faculty preliminary examiner. (b) The six justices shall: 1) Elect a Chief Justice from among the three student justices, who shall preside at all meetings; and 2) Establish their own rules of procedure, subject to the limitations set forth in this code.
4.02 Elections for student members of the Honor Court shall be held in accordance with election procedures set forth in the Student Bar Association Election Code. Each person running for an Honor Court position must file prior to the primary election, a statement that he or she believes in the honor code and its purposes and that he or she will uphold the provisions of the honor code according to the dictates of his or her conscience. (a) At the preliminary election each student shall be allowed to vote for three candidates nominated for the positions of Student Honor Court Justice, alternate Student Honor Court Justice, and Student Preliminary Examiner. In addition, each student shall be allowed to vote for one candidate nominated for Honor Court counsel. (b) The names of nine students nominated for positions of Student Honor Court Justice, Alternate Student Honor Court Justice and Student Preliminary Examiner receiving the most votes in the primary election shall be put on the ballot for the final election. The names of the three candidates nominated for Honor Court Counsel who received the most votes in the primary election all be put on the ballot for the final election. (c) The three candidates for Student Honor Court Justice, Alternate student Honor Court Justice and Preliminary Examiner receiving the most votes in the final election shall be student Honor Court Justices. The candidate receiving the fourth highest number of votes in the final election shall be Student Preliminary Examiner. The candidate receiving the fifth highest number of votes shall be the First Alternate Justice and the candidate receiving the sixth highest number of votes shall be the second Alternate Honor Court Justice. The candidate for Honor Court Counsel receiving the highest number of votes in the final election shall be Honor Court Counsel. (d) Members of the Honor Court shall take office in the spring, one week after the final election for student justices, and shall serve until their successors are selected and installed. (e) Any student in the law school (except third-year day and fourth-year night students) in good academic standing shall be eligible for election to an Honor Court position providing such student has never been found guilty of a disciplinary or honor code violation at the University of San Diego School of Law or any other law school. (f) Non-attendance in the School of Law during any fall or spring semester shall terminate the term of office of a student member of the Honor Court so absent and a vacancy shall exist. (g) All student vacancies shall be filled by appointment by the Student Bar Association officers and class representatives. (h) The faculty members of the Honor Court and their alternates shall be selected by lot to serve for two calendar years except that at the first selection one member will be selected to serve for only one year. The term of the faculty members of the Honor Court shall commence at the same time as the student members begin their terms.
4.03 The six justices shall hear and decide all matters brought before the Honor Court. (a) If any student justice is unable to hear a matter, an appropriate alternate justice shall serve in his place. (b) If the First Alternate Justice is unable to serve for any reason in a matter, the Second Alternate Justice shall serve for that matter. (c) If there are, for any reason, insufficient student Justices and Alternate student Justices to form a court to hear a matter, the Student Bar Association President shall appoint sufficient ad hoc Student Justices to fill the temporary vacancies. (d) If, for any reason, there is a permanent student vacancy, the First Alternate Justice shall fill each vacancy, the Second Alternate Justice shall become First Alternate Justice and a new second Alternate Justice shall be selected by the Student Bar Association Board. (e) The Alternate Faculty Justice shall replace, for a particular matter, a Faculty Justice who is unable to serve. The Dean of the Law School shall make new appointments to Faculty Justices and Faculty Preliminary Examiner whenever vacancies occur among the original appointees. (f) The Honor Court Counsel shall act as prosecutor and be responsible for gathering evidence in all matters of alleged breaches of the honor code. He shall be responsible for: (1) Acquiring a written statement from the accused, if the accused so desires, and from the complainant and from any other witnesses whose testimony may be instrumental in the exposition of the entire truth in the matter. (2) The oral presentation and amplification of the evidence against the accused at the formal hearing, as outlined in Chapter Six. (g) The Preliminary Examiners shall act in accordance with the duties set out in Chapter Five. (1) If the student preliminary Examiner is unable to serve at any preliminary hearing the Student Bar Association President shall appoint a student to sit in his place for that hearing only. (2) If the Faculty Preliminary Examiner is unable to serve at any preliminary hearing the Dean of the Law School shall appoint a faculty member to sit in his place for that hearing only.
4.04 It shall be the responsibility of the Honor Court to hear and consider all complaints brought before them, to make a determination of guilt or innocence and to impose or recommend sanctions in appropriate matters.
4.05 (a) The Honor Court, at the close of a hearing and upon finding that a student has violated the honor code as charged may direct the Dean of the Law School to impose any of the following sanctions: (1) Warning: Notice to the student, in writing, that the continuation or repetition of the conduct found wrongful, within a period of time stated in the warning, may be cause for more severe disciplinary action. (2) Censure: A written reprimand for violation of a specified regulation or provision of the honor code, including the possibility of more severe disciplinary sanction in the event of conviction for the violation of any university regulation or any provision of this code within a period of time stated in the letter of reprimand. (3) Disciplinary Probation: Disciplinary probation shall include but not be limited to exclusion from participation in non-academic privileges and/or activities, as set forth in the notice of disciplinary probation, for a specified period of time. (4) Restitution: Reimbursement for damage to or misappropriation of property. Reimbursement may take the form of appropriate service to repair or otherwise compensate for damages. (5) Recommendation of Suspension: Recommendation of exclusion from classes and all other privileges or activities as set forth in the notice of suspension for a definite period of time. (6) Recommendation of Expulsion: Recommendation of termination of student status for an indefinite period with recommendations, if any, of conditions for readmission. (b) In determining which sanctions to apply, the Honor Court shall consider, in addition to the specific offense, any, and all conduct of the student falling within the purview of this code. In applying sanctions the Honor Court shall have unrestricted access to all records of disciplinary action taken by the Law School against the student. In addition, the Honor Court may review such other law school records of the student, as the student shall choose to make available. (c) A record of any sanction imposed by the Honor Court shall be placed in the file of the student sanctioned. Such sanction shall not be recorded on the student’s academic transcript but shall be kept in a separate section of the student’s file. For good cause shown a student may petition the faculty for removal of such sanction from his or her student file. (d) If the Dean fails to accept a recommendation made pursuant to paragraphs (5) or (6) of 4.04(a) within 10 days, the matter shall be referred to the full faculty for consideration.
Chapter Five — Filing of Complaint, Preliminary Examination
5.01 Any person who has reasonable cause to believe that a student has violated the honor code shall file a written statement of facts with the Honor Court by placing the statement in the Honor Court mailbox. The statement of facts shall contain all information relating to the alleged breach, including the names of all known witnesses.
5.02 Within 10 school days after receipt of the statement of facts, the preliminary examiners shall review the complaint to determine whether or not its sets forth a violation of this honor code. The person filing the complaint shall be required to acknowledge before the preliminary examiners that he or she either has personal knowledge of or has investigated the matters set forth in the complaint, and that such matters are true to the best of his or her knowledge and belief.
5.03 If the preliminary examiners determine that the complaint sets forth a violation of the honor code they shall determine which provisions of the honor code may have been violated and notify the chief justice of such.
5.04 If the preliminary examiners determine that the complaint fails to set forth a violation of the honor code, they shall notify the complainant that the is insufficient. The complainant has the option of refiling the complaint stating additional facts.
5.05 Upon receipt of a report from the preliminary examiners of a possible violation of the honor code the chief justice shall promptly notify the accused and the Honor Court Counsel. The accused shall be notified by certified mail at his address of record.
Chapter Six — The Hearing
6.01 Subject to provisions of Section 8.02 adjudication of the matter before the Honor Court shall take place not less than seven days nor more than twenty-one (21) days from the time the notice of charges is mailed to the accused as prescribed in section 5.05.
6.02 The time and place of the hearing shall be determined by the chief Justice of the Honor Court. Notice of 72 the time and place of the hearing shall be delivered to the accused by certified mail sent to his address of record at this school. Such notice shall be placed in the mail not less than four days prior to the hearing.
6.03 The hearing shall be open unless the accused requests that it be closed.
6.04 The accused and the Honor Court Counsel shall each have one peremptory challenge to be exercised against a member of the court plus an unlimited number of challenges for cause. A challenge for cause shall be sustained by a vote of a majority of the justices of the Honor Court, excluding the challenged justice.
6.05 A motion for acquittal may be made by the accused after the close of the Honor Court Counsel’s case in chief. Such a motion will be sustained by an affirmative vote of two Honor Court Justices.
6.06 The Chief Justice shall rule on all interlocutory matters except challenges for cause and motions for acquittal. If an objection to a ruling by the Chief Justice is made by a member of the Court, a majority vote of the members of the court shall sustain the objection and the ruling shall be reversed.
6.07 A matter shall be presented to the Honor Court in the following manner: (a) The Honor Court Counsel shall read the charges against the accused; (b) The accused or his counsel may, if the accused so desires, present a statement, written or oral; (c) The Honor Court Counsel shall present the case against the accused; (d) The accused or his counsel shall present his defense; (e) The Honor Court Counsel shall present his closing argument; (f) The accused or his counsel shall present his closing argument.
6.08 The accused, or his counsel, shall have the right to present evidence and to examine or cross-examine any witness and the accused shall have the right to give testimony on his own behalf.
6.09 The Honor Court Counsel shall have the right to present evidence and to examine or cross-examine any witnesses.
6.10 The Honor Court shall have the right to ask questions and call witnesses.
6.11 The accused shall have the right to be represented by the counsel of his choice. If the accused desires an individual to serve as counsel either from the faculty or the student body, the Honor Court shall make available to the accused, at this request, a list of faculty members and students willing to serve as defense counsel. The Honor Court shall be responsible for maintaining such a list.
6.12 Formal rules of evidence shall not be applicable to the proceedings established under the honor code. All evidence which the court considers to have probative value shall be received for the purpose of determining the facts.
6.13 All relevant evidence to which the Honor Court has access shall be made available to the accused at his request. This availability shall include evidence in the possession of the Honor Court Counsel.
6.14 A recording or other verbatim record of the final Hearing shall be made and shall be retained in the Honor Court files for one year, except in the case of a suspension or expulsion for which the record shall be retained for three years.
Chapter Seven — Determination of Guilt or Innocence, Sanctions, Opinion of the Court
7.01 After the close of the hearing the Justices shall discuss the matter in closed session.
7.02 The Justices shall vote “guilty” or “not guilty” as to each of the charges made. A Justice shall vote “guilty” only if he believes beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused is guilty.
7.03 Unless five or more Justices concur in voting “guilty” the accused shall be considered “not guilty”.
7.04 If the Honor Court determines that the accused is guilty of violating the honor code, it shall determine by at least a two-thirds vote of the Honor Court, a sanction to be imposed.
7.05 Whether or not the Honor Court determines the accused is guilty, the Honor Court shall express its verdict in writing within seven days of the close of the final hearing. The opinion issued the court shall set forth in summary manner facts and evidence on which the opinion is based.
7.06 The Chief Justice shall deliver to the accused a copy of the opinion required by section 7.05.
7.07 A copy of the opinion referred to in section 7.05 shall be forwarded to the Dean for distribution to the faculty. A copy shall also be placed by the Chief Justice in a special file maintained in the Reserve Room of the Law Library within twenty-four hours of the delivery of the opinion to the accused and such copy shall remain in said file for three months. If a student who was found innocent of an honor code violation desires that the opinion not be forwarded to the Dean for distribution to the faculty nor placed in the library he may so request the court and the request will be honored. Any student enrolled in the University of San Diego School of Law shall have access to the file upon request. In addition to the above, faculty members of the Honor Court shall report to the full faculty on dispositions of the Honor Court. Names of individuals involved shall not be in the Honor Court report. The report shall be made at the faculty meeting following the decision.
Chapter Eight — Time Limitations
8.01 Any allegations of breaches of the honor code must be filed with the Honor Court counsel within six months of the date of the alleged infraction of the code. Any complaint filed six months or later, after the date of the alleged infraction, shall be outside the jurisdiction of the Honor Court.
8.02 All time limitations set out within the honor code, except that contained in section 8.01, may be extended or shortened by action upon petition to the Chief Justice by the Court Counsel for good cause shown.
Chapter Nine — Rehearing
9.01 Nothing in this honor code shall preclude the accused from petitioning the Honor Court for a rehearing. Such a petition must be filed with the Chief Justice of the Honor Court within seven days following the delivery to the accused of the opinion of the Court. The petition should set forth with particularity the reason or reasons for the belief that a rehearing is justified.
9.02 If two or more Honor Court Justices decide that the petition presents an adequate basis for further consideration by the Honor Court, a rehearing will be ordered at the earliest practicable date.
Chapter Ten — Amendment or Repeal
10.01 The honor code may be amended or repealed at any time during the fall and spring semesters. To initiate such amendment or repeal, a petition containing the signatures of ten (10) percent of the student body and setting forth the nature of the proposed amendment or repeal shall be presented to the Honor Court.
10.02 Such amendment or repeal may also be proposed by resolution containing the nature of proposed amendment or repeal, approved by a majority of the Justices on the Honor Court.
10.03 Before submission to the student body for approval, any proposed amendment or repeal must be approved by the faculty.
10.04 A proposed amendment or repeal shall be posted on the Law School bulletin board within twenty-four hours of faculty approval of such. After the proposed amendment or repeal has been posted for two weeks, the Student Bar Association Board shall conduct an election of the entire study body of the School of Law on whether the proposed amendment or repeal shall be approved. The proposed amendment or repeal, to become effective, must receive the approval of two-thirds of those voting in the election. Voting shall be by secret ballot.
Chapter Eleven — Severability
11.01 Any invalidation of any part of the honor code shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions of the honor code.
Chapter Twelve — Effective Date of Revised Code
12.01 This code shall be effective immediately upon approval by the faculty and students of the Law School. It shall be effective for all purposes except for cases for which written complaints have been filed with the Honor Court as of the date of said approval.