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Protect Your Future

Protect Your Future

Student Legal Services has put together a guide to help students understand different issues that students should be aware of when they are on campus. 

Topics include:

  • Alcohol
  • Assault
  • Destruction
  • Domestic Violence
  • Drugs
  • Drunk Driving
  • Fake I.D.
  • Harassment
  • If You're Arrested
  • Noise Violation
  • Pornography
  • Residential Conduct & Community Standards
  • Sexual Misconduct
  • Stalking
  • Theft
  • Threats
  • Trespass
  • Weapons

To read more about these topics, visit the website

Office of the Sexual Misconduct Response Coordinator

About the Office of the Sexual Misconduct Response Coordinator (OSMRC)

The Office of the Sexual Misconduct Response Coordinator (OSMRC) coordinates the university's response to reports of sexual assault, sexual harassment, dating violence, domestic violence, and stalking when those reports involve members of or visitors to the university community. Informed by current federal guidance, the OSMRC aims to ensure university responses promptly and effectively stop problem behavior, prevent its recurrence, and remedy its effects. The office:

  • Provides a central place to report an incident
  • Provides expert advice about university policies and procedures
  • Provides referrals to campus and community confidential resources and victim advocates
  • Facilitates accommodations to address safety concerns and support victims or complainants so academic and professional pursuits may continue unimpeded
  • Coordinates the university's response by working with victims or complainants to ensure their wishes are understood and inform the process
  • and more...

To learn more about OSMRC, visit the website

https://osmrc.uiowa.edu

Miscellaneous

Dean of Students - Emergency Assistance

About Student Care & Assistance

Student Care & Assistance provides assistance to University of Iowa students experiencing crisis and emergency situations. These situations may include:

  • Hospitalization
  • Medical emergencies or long-term illness
  • Mental health concerns
  • Chronic conditions
  • Death of a family member
  • Natural disasters - fire, tornado, flood
  • Off campus living concerns
  • Unexpected events or challenges

To learn more about the Dean of Students and Student Care & Assistance, visit the website

Miscellaneous

Chief Diversity Office

About the Chief Diversity Office

Within the Chief Diversity Office, the Diversity Resources Team provides consultation, resource, and skill-building opportunities for University of Iowa faculty, staff, students and guests in order to foster an inclusive, respectful and equitable university community.

Equal Opportunity and Diversity (EOD) implements diversity policies at the University of Iowa and supports the university’s compliance with federal/state laws and regulations and university policies prohibiting discrimination, harassment, retaliation and sexual harassment by or towards any UI community member.

The Center for Diversity and Enrichment (CDE) provides precollege students development assistance with facilitating the enrollment process and provides programs and activities that support the ability of underrepresented student to increase their skills to thrive and succeed at the University of Iowa.

  • Within CDE, the Military and Veteran Student Services provides a resource for utilizing the talents, leadership ability and volunteer power of our veteran and military-affiliated community.
  • CDE also administers the federally funded TRiO Student Support Services and Upward Bound programs.
    • TRiO SSS assists in developing and enhancing student academic skills, connects them to resources on campus and in the community and provides programming, tutoring and a safe space to develop relationships for low-income and first-generation students and/or students with disabilities.
    • TRiO Upward Bound helps first-generation and low-income high school students prepare for college and understand the college-going process.

To learn more about the Chief Diversity Office and its programs, visit the website

Miscellaneous

Women's Resource & Action Center

About WRAC

WRAC works to create greater equity for individuals and communities of all identities, with a particular focus on women, through activism, social justice initiatives, leadership training, advocacy, service, and personal and professional development.

WRAC is located at :

Women's Resource & Action Center
Bowman House
230 N. Clinton Street
Iowa City, IA 52242

To learn more, visit the WRAC website

Miscellaneous

Renters Insurance

Renters Insurance

If you think renters insurance is not necessary, you are sadly mistaken. Even though you may not own the home, apartment or unit, you do own the property that is inside of the home. If your items are lost or stolen, your home floods or catches on fire, or some other unforeseen accident occurs, you will need to replace those items with your own money. These items are things you purchased over the years, but when disaster strikes, you do not have years to replace your personal property, especially your everyday necessities. It could be really expensive to replace your personal items, which is why you should protect your investments. When it pertains to protecting your personal property, renters insurance is your most affordable option. 

To find out more information about renters insurance, visit The Zebra's website.

For more information on why renters insurance is important, visit the NOLO website

Resources for Moving Out Miscellaneous

Small Claims Guide

Small claims court was created to provide citizens with a low-cost, simple process for resolving civil disputes involving small amounts of money. The applicable Iowa laws may be found in Iowa Code chapter 631.

A small claims case is a civil action for a money judgment in which the amount in controversy is $5000 or less. An action for forcible entry and detainer arising out of a landlord tenant dispute can be brought in small claims court. In small claims court, cases are tried before a judge, not a jury, and without strict regard to technicalities of rules of procedure. There are easy to complete forms for small claims available on this website, with links to the forms and instrucions at the top of this page.

Start a Small Claims Case

To begin a small claims case, review the "Instructions for Pro Se Users " from the Iowa Bar.  You will then be able to choose and download the appropriate small claims Original Notice form available on this website. Once you complete the form, you must go to Iowa Courts E-filing website, create an account to become a registered user, and file the form in PDF format. You must also pay an $85 filing fee. There may be an additional cost for having the petition served on the other party.

Defending a Small Claims Case

If you have received an Original Notice naming you as a defendant, review the Instructions for a Defendant available through the Iowa Bar. Download a small claims Appearance and Answer form from this website. If you believe you also have a claim against the person suing you, you may file a small claims Counter Claim by using a form available on the same site. Once you complete the form, you must go to Iowa Courts E-filing website, create an account to become a registered user, and file the form in PDF format.  There is no fee for filing an answer. If you do not file an answer, you risk the chance of having the court enter a default judgment against you.

Court Hearing

If the other party has entered a timely answer or defaulted (not answered), the clerk will assign a case to the court calendar for hearing. The clerk shall transmit the case file to the judge assigned to hear the case. A magistrate, district associate judge, or district court judge may hear the case. Judicial magistrates hear most small claims cases. Small claims hearings shall be simple and informal. Follow the Tips for Representing Yourself on this website.

Hearings are not recorded by a certified court reporter unless the party provides the reporter at the party's own expense. At the magistrate's discretion the hearing may be electronically recorded by other means.

Failure to Appear at Hearing

Unless good cause to the contrary is shown, if parties fail to appear at the time of the hearing the claim shall be dismissed without prejudice. If the plaintiff fails to appear, but the defendant appears, the claim shall be dismissed with prejudice. If the plaintiff appears, but the defendant does not, judgment shall be rendered against the defendant.

Using a Lawyer for Small Claims

Some litigants in small claims court choose to have a lawyer, though it is not required. If you do want to have an attorney represent you in court, but want some assistance preparing your case you might consider retaining a lawyer for an hour or so to look over your case and point out strong and weak points.

Default Judgment

If a defendant fails to appear and the clerk of court determines proper notice was given, judgment shall be rendered against the defendant by the clerk of court if the relief is readily ascertainable. If the relief is not readily ascertainable, a judge shall render judgment.

Setting Aside a Default Judgment

A defendant may ask the court to set aside a default judgment for good cause, including mistake, inadvertence, surprise, excusable neglect, or unavoidable casualty. A motion to set aside a default judgment must be filed promptly after the discovery of the grounds, but not more than sixty days after entry of the judgment.

Appeal

If you are unhappy with the decision in the case, you may appeal. To appeal you must:

  • Either tell the judge at the conclusion of the hearing that you want to appeal, or file a written notice of appeal with the clerk within twenty days after the decision is rendered.
  • Pay the docket fee to the clerk of court within twenty days after the decision is rendered.

If a magistrate decided the original action, a district associate or district court judge will hear the appeal. If a district associate judge heard the original action, a district court judge shall decide the appeal. And if a district court judge heard the original action, another district court judge shall decide the appeal.

The appeal shall be heard upon the record without taking additional evidence. If the original action was recorded electronically, the tape recording or other medium shall be the record on appeal.
If you are not pleased with the outcome of the appeal, you may ask the Iowa Supreme Court to review the case. In small claims cases, however, the supreme court has discretion to decide if it will review the case—review is not a matter of right.

Resources for Moving Out

Consumer's Guide to Fair Housing

Click below to view a PDF of the State of Iowa's Consumer's Guide to Fair Housing:

A Consumer's Guide to Fair Housing

A Consumer's Guide to Fair Housing is funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. A joint project of the Governor's Developmental Disability Council, Iowa Civil Rights Commission, Iowa Division of Person with Disabilities, Iowa Legal Aid, Iowa Program for Assistive Technology, and the University of Iowa School of Law; with editorial and design support from the Center for Disabilities and Development, University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.

Resources for Moving Out