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Education

The HMBR Approach

HMBR’s multi-disciplinary approach is oriented toward helping clients design and implement strategies to achieve their education and business goals within the complex and rapidly evolving education sector. The attorneys in our Education Practice combine an exceptional depth of experience, with broad expertise in the many substantive areas of the law that characterize the demands of our education clients.Our services are delivered by a small team of attorneys with an understanding of the unique context of contemporary education that enables our clients to create new opportunities and successfully address the challenges posed by a constantly changing business, regulatory and technological landscape.

HMBR is able to compete with much larger firms because it can provide flexible structuring in fee arrangements, including appropriate fixed and alternative fees, to help clients obtain predictability in budgeting for legal costs. We use our collective experiences to provide our clients with more than just the legal answers to business questions. We aim to form strategic relationships where our services are integrated with our client’s goals in a way that complements the client’s targeted objectives. Their success is our success.

Client Base

  • Public and private colleges and universities
  • For-profit education institutions
  • Community colleges
  • Financial institutions
  • Private equity firms
  • Corporations that provide education-related products, services and technologies
  • Academic medical centers
  • Education foundations
  • State government agencies
  • Public school districts
  • Private schools
  • Charter schools
  • Municipalities
  • Tribal nations

Experienced Professionals

HMBR’s Education Practice is comprised of lawyers from across the firm’s varying legal disciplines. Our attorneys utilize their combined experience to understand how diverse areas of the law intersect with educational institutions. The team provides comprehensive legal representation and services to a broad spectrum of clients by regularly working together to define best practices and counsel clients on critical legal issues in education law and policy.

Our Education Practice attorneys draw on their extensive experience from the private as well as the public sector, including serving as former General Counsel for the U.S. Department of Education, in-house corporate counsel, Assistant Attorney General, Special Assistant Attorney General, Assistant U.S. Attorney and Department of Justice trial attorney. Our team also serves on the board of directors, board of trustees, academic councils, and presidential task forces for numerous public and private educational institutions, education groups, foundations and community organizations.

Services

General Education

HMBR’s Education Practice encompasses an array of educational issues involved with higher education and K-12 education. Our services include student relations, policy development, civil rights, business operations, intellectual property, campus safety, Title IX and compliance matters. Our attorneys have experience working with presidents, superintendents, trustees, faculty, staff, administrators, and general counsels to provide responsive and cost effective solutions to the unique challenges of each individual educational institution.

Labor & Employment

HMBR has represented employer organizations, Taft-Hartley Trust Funds, labor organizations, labor-management committees, and various other related entities with a variety of legal issues that match the demand of a sophisticated labor-management market. Our attorneys provide guidance on wage claims, severance agreements, employee benefits issues, drug and alcohol policies, sexual harassment policies, employment contract negotiation, compliance with OSHA, review of employment documents and audits of employment practices.

Big Data Compliance

HMBR counsels educational institutions on responsible stewardship to build, strengthen and maintain trust amongst students, faculty and staff when it comes to data privacy and security. We conduct internal investigations of breaches of personally identifiable information and defend covered entities and third party affiliates in governmental investigations of alleged violations of federal and state privacy laws.

Financial Management

Encompassing nearly every aspect of financial management, HMBR is experienced in accounting and taxation, estates and trust, employee compensation matters, charitable giving and tax-exempt status, administration of financial student aid, and audits of federal grant programs.

Government Relations and Regulatory Affairs

As the educational landscape continues to evolve, regulatory compliance and reform remains a leading area within the educational sector. It is for this reason that our attorneys advise educational institutions on proactive and preventative measures that include drafting and reviewing disciplinary codes, policies on hazing, sexual harassment, dating violence and other similar campus conduct related matters. Our Education Practice routinely counsels major traditional and for-profit institutions of higher education on all aspects of federal regulatory and compliance matters, including program reviews, as well as issues under the Higher Education Act.  As a nationally recognized law firm in the health care industry, HMBR leverages its wealth of comparable experience in the highly regulated health care sector to assist our education clients in matters involving accreditation, state authorization, acquisitions and affiliations.

Corporate & Business

HMBR has advised clients on corporate and business matters that include business entity formation and reorganization, drafting and amending corporate bylaws and operating agreements, securities issues, mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance and resolutions, licensing and trademark issues, contract drafting and negotiation, stock and asset purchases, and general business strategy. Applying these experiences to the educational sector, our attorneys have advised a community college in establishing a support organization for overseas operations and negotiated a joint venture with a global technology company to market and sell digital courses in India, Africa and Eastern Europe.

Real Estate

HMBR has counseled clients, as both Buyers and Sellers, on a multitude of real estate matters consisting of construction, acquisitions, land use and zoning regulations, licensing, real estate contract formation, and mortgage and financial package reviews.

Litigation, Government Investigations & Enforcement Actions

We represent clients through all stages of the litigation process by offering strategic and cost effective solutions, including hearings, agency actions and alternative dispute resolution.

    • Qui Tam Litigation
      • Our attorneys have represented clients in various federal and state whistleblower lawsuits, including cases involving claims brought under the False Claim Act.
    • Federal Inspector General  and State Attorney General Investigations
      • Our attorneys have experience in program reviews, investigations and audits by the Office of the Inspector General and Attorney General for a variety of federal agencies and states, respectively.
    • Appeals of Adverse Accreditation Determinations
      • Our attorneys have counseled medical schools, for profit colleges, and community colleges in the accreditation and appeals process of adverse accreditation determinations.

Education Policy

HMBR has experience in working with leading foundations, trade and professional associations, businesses, education groups and others on the development and implementation of education reform initiatives in both higher education and K-12 education. These initiatives include competency-based education, state education reform laws, mayoral control, pension reform, HEA and ESEA reauthorizations, and federal and state competitive grant programs.