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Schnader brings together attorneys with varied skill sets and backgrounds to provide a holistic and multifaceted approach to address the needs of our higher education clients. We respond to individual situations, always recognizing that plans must be practical and cost-effective. We also fully appreciate that our clients need to develop positive relationships within their local communities and all levels of government.

Our involvement with numerous higher education matters give us a head start in addressing short-term problems and realizing long-term goals, as we provide traditional legal counsel, training and information programs, policy and procedure review, and representation in dispute resolution.

Our services include:

Compliance: Provide navigational advice regarding compliance issues specific to higher education, including student discipline, accommodation of student disabilities, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, the Higher Education Opportunity Act, Gainful Employment, Consumer Disclosures, Clery Act, Borrower Defense to Repayment, the Incentive Compensation Ban, mandatory vaccinations, and medical marijuana on campus, for example.

Contracts: Advise with both simple and complex contractual relationships that support the day-to-day needs of schools, their faculty and students, including drafting, negotiating and implementing agreements for food services and hospitality, security, maintenance, utilities, equipment leasing, consulting services, subcontractor issues, and the full spectrum of procurement activities. Our services include review of construction document and licensing agreements. We can help create forms for frequently used contracts.

Creditors Rights/Restructuring: Represent higher education institutions in Chapter 11 bankruptcy and reorganization cases, bankruptcy litigation and commercial loan foreclosures.

Employment: Defend against employment-related lawsuits and administrative charges. Conduct independent investigations. Advise on employment, labor and benefits compliance, strategies, and decision-making. Advise on faculty grievances, and organized labor and unionization issues. Deliver or assist with training. Help with policies and handbooks. Implement whistleblower hotlines.

Financing: Serve as borrower’s counsel in securing financing and in restructuring existing tax-exempt debt and obtaining new money for improvements. Assist with the sale of excess assets and property.

Governance: Advise trustees and administrators on fiduciary duties, state corporate law, federal tax-exemption related matters, and the creation, operation and dissolution of affiliated entities. We assist with the development of articles of formation, bylaws, and structuring the board of directors.

Intellectual Property: Guide the institution throughout the lifecycle of intellectual property rights, from developing, clearing, and securing rights, to leveraging and enforcing those rights. Assist the Institution with technology transfers. Advise the Institution, faculty, and students on brand development, social media, and name, image, and likeness issues.

Internal Investigations: Conduct investigations on a multitude of student and employee issues including allegations of employee misconduct, discrimination, harassment, workplace violence, Title IX complaints, and financial improprieties. Train investigators. Lead seminars on conducting investigations and writing investigative reports.

Litigation: Handle many types of disputes at the administrative agency, trial and appellate levels, including those concerning contract disputes, labor and employment matters, real estate disputes, student discrimination, and intellectual property issues.

Real Estate: Guide all stages of traditional and complex building and campus development projects, from campus planning to finance to regulatory compliance to construction implementation, including student housing, mixed-use projects, hotels and entertainment projects. Assist with the acquisition of new assets and sale of excess properties.

Sports Law: Our service include advice regarding Name, Image and Likeness (NIL) issues, sports gambling, NCAA compliance, Title IX and similar issues.

Tax exemption issues and endowments: We’ve advised regarding employment tax responsibilities for employees working remotely during COVID, regarding income tax exemption for residences occupied by the President/Provost and potential tax liabilities associated with investments held by their endowments.

Title IX: Several of us are trained to assist with Title IX needs, including serving as independent investigators, fact-finders, decision makers or alternative dispute resolution mediators. We also help write policies and train college personnel.

Training: Deliver live training sessions to assist university personnel in spotting issues and staying abreast of compliance issues.

Trusted Advisor: We serve as external general counsel to institutions which choose this option. We are available to answer questions and provide advice before problems escalate. On any given day, we may help review a student clinical placement agreement; discuss the need for an accommodation for a student, help a program manager research program requirements, and advise a registrar reacting to a subpoena. If you are interested in learning more about the retention, please contact one of our practice group chairs.

Our Attorneys

Karen Baillie 412-577-5118 Pittsburgh, PA Download vCard
Richard A. Barkasy 215-751-2526 Philadelphia, PA Wilmington, DE Download vCard
Kevin S. Blanton 215-751-2419 Philadelphia, PA Download vCard
Lisa M. Brauner 212-973-8170 New York, NY Download vCard
Andrew Chou 215-751-2392 Philadelphia, PA Download vCard
Elliot Dater 412-577-5214 Pittsburgh, PA Download vCard
Kristi J. Doughty 302-482-4038 Wilmington, DE Philadelphia, PA Download vCard
Frantz J. Duncan 215-751-2255 Philadelphia, PA Download vCard
Laurel Gift 412-577-5115 Pittsburgh, PA Download vCard
Alison R. Gutierrez 412-577-5202 Pittsburgh, PA Download vCard
Megan E. Harmon 412-577-5209 Pittsburgh, PA Download vCard
George H. Kalikman 415-364-6734 San Francisco, CA Download vCard
Anne E. Kane 215-751-2397 Philadelphia, PA Download vCard
W. Drew Kastner 215-751-2122 Philadelphia, PA New York, NY Download vCard
Marilyn Z. Kutler 215-751-2684 Philadelphia, PA Download vCard
Nicholas J. LePore, III 215-751-2286 Philadelphia, PA Download vCard
Theresa E. Loscalzo 215-751-2254 Philadelphia, PA Download vCard
Joseph E. Lundy 215-751-2525 Philadelphia, PA Download vCard
Cynthia A. Murray 212-973-8077 New York, NY Download vCard
Brandy S. Ringer 412-577-5222 Pittsburgh, PA Download vCard
Lisa J. Rodriguez 856-482-5741 Cherry Hill, NJ Download vCard
Cary Stewart Sklaren 212-973-8033 New York, NY Download vCard
Keith E. Whitson 412-577-5220 Pittsburgh, PA Download vCard
Jasmine Williams 215-751-2499 Philadelphia, PA Download vCard
Stephenie Wingyuen Yeung 楊穎苑 215-751-2277 Philadelphia, PA Download vCard

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