MARC’s Education Law Group, co-chaired by Paul F. Carvelli and Laura A. Siclari, advocates for the rights of students in a variety of contexts, including special education and Section 504 issues in school, school disciplinary issues, HIB (harassment, intimidation and bullying) investigations, higher education issues and guardianships.
Every child between the ages of 3 and 21 who has a disability that adversely affects his or her education is entitled to a free and appropriate public education.
We assist families of special needs students in accessing the support they need in school. We can participate in the initial assessment stage, help with negotiating an appropriate IEP (individualized educational plan) or Section 504 Plan and file for Due Process or mediation when parents and their respective school districts have reached an impasse.
School Discipline & Bullying
When schools discipline students, parents must make sure that the school is following district policy and applicable New Jersey law. Similarly, when students are victims or the accused in an HIB allegation, the New Jersey Anti-Bullying Bill of Rights requires specific actions and a set timeline in the investigation.
We assist parents in navigating such matters to ensure that, whatever side of the disciplinary or HIB action their child may fall, the school follows its policies and New Jersey law to ensure that the rights of all students are protected.
Students’ rights do not end when they go to college. For college students with disabilities, both Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) provide protections to ensure they are not excluded or unfairly limited.
We counsel students and their parents to ensure that students obtain reasonable accommodations. When students are faced with academic integrity violations or disciplinary matters, we assist in the student’s defense.
Our firm works to ensure that the due process rights of our students – whether victim or the accused – are being asserted and met at all stages of the investigation and hearing process.
Individuals with serious developmental disabilities or mental health issues often have difficulty caring for themselves or managing their finances independently. New Jersey law provides a process for parents, caregivers and other loved ones to become the legal guardian of the person and/or property of their disabled loved ones once they have reached the age of 18.
We handle both sides of guardianship matters, representing petitioners seeking to become guardians or acting as court-appointed counsel of alleged incapacitated persons.