Frequently Asked Questions:
How is the Office of the Ombudsperson informal?
Use of the office is voluntary. The office is not a replacement or substitute for formal grievance, investigative and appeal processes provided by the University. Conversations with an ombudsperson are confidential and considered “off the record.”
Does the Office of the Ombudsperson identify and report trends and systemic problems?
The office intervenes when requested, to assist parties in finding a resolution when privacy, discretion, and promptness are desired.
The Office of the Ombudsperson can receive information in confidence and is not obligated to report what is disclosed. The concerns or issues presented remain in confidence upon the student’s request, unless otherwise required by University of Miami policies and procedures.
Yes. The office tracks demographic statistics such as: class level, type of concern, who referred the student to the office, and the outcome.
What if a matter is brought to the attention of the Office of the Ombudsperson and it cannot be resolved informally?
The statistics have no identifying links to the student. The information compiled gives the office data to make recommendations regarding systemic change where appropriate.
The office will refer the student to the appropriate office(s).
Can the Office of the Ombudsperson give me legal advice?
No. The Ombudsperson will advise you of your rights within the University but does not provide legal advice.
Can I use the Office of the Ombudsperson when I have filed a grievance or retained an attorney?
No. The office is an informal resource designed to assist in the resolution of concerns or issues.
Is the Office of the Ombudsperson an advocate for those who use the office?
No. The office advocates for a fair process and does not take sides.
How can I be sure that my contact with the Office of the Ombudsperson is confidential?
Confidentiality is the foundation of the office and is a fundamental principle in our professional Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice.
Will the Office of the Ombudsperson overturn a policy or decision of another University department?
The agreement to maintain confidentiality is what allows the office to be an alternative channel of communication. An ombudsperson will not disclose the identity of a student who uses the office nor disclose any information regarding a voiced complaint, concern or problem without the student’s expressed permission.
No. The purpose of the Office of the Ombudsperson is to open lines of communication in order to assist with the resolution of students’ concerns.
Who assists people other than students with resolving concerns?
Faculty, administrators and staff having an issue with the University should click the appropriate link below: