Overview

Susan C. Stone is the head of the Education practice group at McCarthy Lebit.  Ms. Stone has a strong litigation background that includes first chair and second chair trial experience representing both plaintiffs and defendants in state and federal courts involving criminal defense, employment issues and other forms of negligence and contract disputes. Susan has spearheaded McCarthy Lebit’s Education practice to include higher education law including, Title IX actions addressing intimate partner violence and other forms of misconduct on campus such as hazing; academic charges of dishonesty; and special education law, including due process complaints and the negotiation of IEPs and 504 plans. Additionally, Ms. Stone is a trained facilitator in restorative justice, which is a process applied to student misconduct, campus crimes and other matters that allows for the rehabilitation of offenders through reconciliation with victims, as well as the community.

Ms. Stone also concentrates her practice on employment law where she maintains a global view, working as a consultant to employers dealing with employment disputes and representing employees in severance negotiations. Susan has experience negotiating workplace accommodations and managing administrative charges in employment law, as well as handling cases involving discrimination, wrongful discharge, and retaliation. She has filed and defended actions by the EEOC, OCRC and Human Relations Commissions in other states.

Ms. Stone takes a creative approach to helping her clients, and will advocate aggressively for successful resolution of their cases.  Susan is experienced in representing individuals with a variety of disabilities and mental health issues.   She is sensitive to complex legal matters involving women and children, and will take a personal interest in each and every case she defends.

Education

  • Miami University
    • BA Speech Communication, cum laude
  • Case Western Reserve University School of Law
    • JD, cum laude
  • Certificate of Completion from Skidmore College
    • Restorative Justice Training

Admissions

  • Ohio
  • New Jersey
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Ohio

Activities

  • Ohio State Bar Association, Member
  • Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, Member
  • Cleveland Academy of Trial Attorneys, Member
  • Families Advocating for Campus Equality, Member
  • Stop Abusive & Violent Environments, Member
  • Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, Member

Articles

  • Restorative justice Conflict resolution program could be used to resolve workplace issues, Smart Business Magazine, October 2017
  • Shifting Sands: A New Day for the Accused in Title IX Matters, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, September 2017
  • Potential Tax Benefits Associated with the Tuition for Special Needs Students, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, September 2017
  • Liberty, Fraternity, Liability: An Assessment of Fraternity Liability for the Acts of Its Members, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, August 2017
  • When the Police Come Knocking, Don’t Start Talking, McCarthy Lebit Criminal Defense Blog, July 2017
  • Ohio House Bill 410 Halts Student Skip Days, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, July 2017
  • The Suspens(ion) Is Killing Me: Legislative Changes to Ohio Suspension Law, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, June 2017
  • Ohio's Campus Disruption Act: Students beware, Crain's Cleveland Business, April 2017
  • How Do Trump Appointments for Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights Impact Student Rights on Campus?, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, April 2017
  • Revenge Porn: Redefining the Meaning of Consent, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, December 2016
  • Words Matter When It Comes to Learning Issues, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, December 2016
  • Know the Limits, Community Leader, November 2016
  • When Medical Residents Claim Sex Discrimination: Which Law Applies, Title VII or Title IX?, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, September 2016
  • Is your student with disabilities in the right school?, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, September 2016
  • Swimming in Different Ponds Navigating the Criminal and Civil Aspects of Campus Sexual Misconduct Proceedings, Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Journal, September 2016
  • Drinking in college can lead to Title IX charges, Cleveland Jewish News, August 2016
  • The Summit Highlights the Effectiveness of Women in Leadership, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, June 2016
  • What are the Differences Between an IEP and a 504 Plan?, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, June 2016
  • SEEING THE BIG PICTURE: Create a binder of your child’s records for the ultimate collaboration tool, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, April 2016
  • Do's and don'ts of social media, She In The CLE, April 2016
  • When Yes Does Not Mean Yes, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, March 2016
  • How Social Media Can Ruin Your College Career Before It Even Begins, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, February 2016
  • Campus Sexual Misconduct Investigations: Procedural Quicksand for Students, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, January 2016
  • Sexual Assault on Campus: Guiding Students Through the Legal Minefield, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, October 2015
  • Understanding Alphabet Soup: A Guide to the Special Education Process, Northeast Ohio Parent LiveSpecial Resource Guide, Summer 2015
  • Title IX: Addressing Sexual Discrimination and Violence in Schools, Law You Can Use, Ohio State Bar Association, July 2015
  • IEP Plan B: Revoking consent of your child’s special education services, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, July 2015
  • You Give Love a Bad Name – The Dual Nature of Dating Violence and Title IX, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, May 2015
  • What Happens if my Disabled Child is Charged with a Crime at School?, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, May 2015
  • A University Can Withhold a Degree if the Student is Not Professional, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, April 2015
  • To Tweet or not to Tweet, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, March 2015
  • Importance of an Independent Educational Evaluation, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, January 2015
  • What is the Difference Between Bullying and Hazing?, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, December 2014
  • Is your student ready to go back to school?, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, August 2014
  • Special Education Lawyer for Parents and Students, McCarthy Lebit Education Law Blog, August 2014

Presentations

  • Restorative Justice – a better alternative to the Title IX Hearing Process, Title IX ExecuSummit, July 2017
  • A School of Options: How an attorney and advocate can open doors to new services for your child, International Dyslexia Association of Northern Ohio, Notre Dame College, November 2016
  • How to Prevent a Title IX Lawsuit, Title IX ExecuSummit, July 2016
  • Women in Leadership, Cleveland Jewish News, Eton, February 2016
  • Wrongful Imprisonment Settlement Interview, WEWS, February 2016
  • Top 10 Tips for Parents, Ohio Coalition for the Education of Children with Disabilities, Independence Civic Theater, November 2014
  • IEP Process - Protecting Your Child’s Rights in School, Protecting Your Special Needs Child, South Pointe Hospital, October 2012

Experience

TRO for College Athlete

Obtained temporary restraining order for college athlete who was barred from playing football for a season due to a prior conviction.

Higher Education Representation

Ms. Stone and Ms. Supler have represented students at the following college and universities:

Antioch College
Case Western Reserve University
Cleveland State University
College of Wooster
Emory University
Hiram College
John Carroll University
Kent State University
Kenyon College
Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine
Northeast Ohio Medical University
Oakland University
Oberlin College
Ohio University
School of the Art Institute of Chicago
University of Akron
University of Nebraska – Lincoln
University of Miami
Ursuline College
Wright State University
Youngstown State University

Title IX Sexual Assault Testimonial

Thanks for conferencing me in on today’s call about the disposition of my son’s Title IX sexual assault case. While I never doubted my son’s innocence, I am keenly aware that the current campus climate venerates victims and assumes the guilt of the accused. I have no doubt that your diligent investigative work and vigorous advocacy played a major role in dismissing the charges prior to the hearing stage. I’m just not sure we would have been successful without you. I am also extremely grateful for the emotional support you provided to my son over these past few months. I don’t think he could have made it through the semester without you taking some of the burden off of his shoulders. Any family whose son is facing a Title IX allegation should hire a lawyer, and the lawyer they hire should be you. We are forever in your debt.

Title IX Testimonial

Susan Stone has helped me enormously over the last several months in defense of a Title IX case. Her dedication and commitment to the case was astounding and with all of her hard work, helped my family and I reach a resolution of which we were very comfortable with. Susan’s credentials alone speak to how successful she is but as a first hand witness I can also testify towards her diligence. My family and I cannot express how pleased we were with her and the outcome of the case. I would highly recommend her, not only for the work she does but how she treats all of her clients with extreme sincerity and respect.

Special Placement Testimonial

I want to express my gratitude for all your help getting the best possible outcome for [our child].  We were completely unaware of our options and felt overwhelmed by the entire process, and at times bullied by the school, whether or not it was intentional on their part.  Due to your willingness to educate us and talk us through each step of the process, we were able to make confident choices and follow through on what we all believed to be in [our child]’s best interest.  With your help and diligence, we were able to get exactly what we asked for at our initial meeting: time to get all the information, and an outcome that was best suited for [our child]’s success.  Further, I have no doubt that, without you as an ally, we would not have been able to navigate the process in a manner allowing us to maintain a positive relationship with the school system going forward, while we all continue to work together to meet [our child’s] educational needs.

Overall, thank you so much for your hard work, as well as your patience and compassion.  [We] are very fortunate to have you throughout this process.

*Names were omitted to protect the client’s privacy.

Graduate Program Readmission Testimonial

“I wanted to let you know I graduated!   I cannot tell u how good it feels and the placements I had were amazing!  I could not have asked for better experiences.  To think about graduating with the other placements prior to this big fight would not even compare.  I really learned so much and had amazing supervisors.  Thank you so much for making this possible.  The words ‘Thank you’ are just not sufficient.  Means the world to me. You made a difference in my life.  Thanks for taking a chance on me and taking my case. Now I have to study for my boards.    I hope you are well!”

College Student Testimonial

I’m incredibly grateful to have had your expertise and dedication on my side, and am very happy with the results. I’m looking forward to the new-found relief this resolution has afforded me and how to apply all the life experience gained during this turbulent time towards my next steps at [college] and life beyond.

Thank you ever so much for hard work and support, I couldn’t have done it without you.

Special Education Services Testimonial

An alternative recommendation for our special needs child’s long-standing ETR threatened damaging cuts to badly needed funds and services. Our voice in the matter seemed to have little bearing.

Weighing our options, we acted on advice to secure Susan’s help.

During discussions with our local school board, Susan’s efforts were critical in keeping the proceedings focused on the full scope of our child’s educational needs and physical accommodations.

As parents, we are very grateful for Susan’s advocacy. Her pragmatic approach ensured that our family’s concerns and considerations were effectively communicated and ultimately; respected.

Avvo Client Testimonials

“I was embroiled in an educational dispute that was going to result in dismissal from a graduate program without due process. I contacted Susan and explained my situation. She was incredibly understanding and listened to my story. She was interested in the facts and was completely non-judgmental… She went above and beyond and was always available to talk and listen to my concerns. She absolutely put everything she had into resolving my dispute and guaranteeing me due process… In short, she’s amazing. And I’m back in school.”

“She is incredibly helpful and very good at what she does. She is definitely to the point but don’t mistake her no nonsense attitude for lack of empathy. She cares. She truly does.”

“Susan worked with me on an employment case in which I had been fired in retaliation… Susan treated me like a priority and I felt that she truly wanted the best possible outcome for me. She was incredibly efficient and we wrapped up the settlement in just a couple of weeks. I was very impressed with Susan’s responsiveness if I needed to contact her… She took time to make sure I understood what I could and could not do or ask for, and the legal reasoning behind any decisions. She frequently asked for my input on the outcome I wanted, and advocated for me tirelessly until we succeeded in obtaining it…”

“Susan Stone represented me in an educational legal dispute. I had been (very wrongly) dismissed just weeks before graduating from my doctorate program… She wanted to know me for me, and wanted to know my dreams, so that she can make them come true. As of today, they have come true. She truly genuinely cares from the bottom of her heart and will quite literally do everything and anything she can to fight for your cause no matter what it is and no matter how difficult it is (and will talk to you about it no matter what time it is). I will never be able to thank her enough for her kindness, patience, and just such an amazing personality…”

“Susan Stone represented me in an educational legal dispute. She provided her honest legal advice as to how she would proceed if it were her in the same situation. Not only did she listen, she was patient, detail-oriented and determined. That determination to support me as her client created successful re-admittance into my college and master’s program from which I was discharged without having to incur large costs and a court battle… I believe that without Susan’s help, I would still be left without a degree and a large sum of student loans. She offers her clients hope and will work for success. I highly recommend Susan Stone and thank her wholeheartedly.”

“Susan did an amazing job with our case, which was a very tough case… Our child will now have everything he needs to help him prepare for his future. Even though Susan was prepared to go to trial, it was not necessary! The manner in which she led us through the process avoided all of that, thankfully… Susan Stone is caring and knowledgeable. I highly recommend her.”

*Courtesy of Avvo. Check out the full testimonials and more on Susan’s Avvo profile.

Reversal of Student Scholarship Revoke

Obtained complete reversal for student of Northeast Ohio College who was suspended and whose scholarship was revoked.

Wrongful Imprisonment Settlement

Obtained settlement for client who was wrongfully imprisoned for arson.