A plaintiff instituting a private action to enforce Title IX may not ordinarily recover compensatory damages, unless the plaintiff offers evidence that the discrimination was willful, deliberate, or intentional. Injunctive relief is the remedy most regularly sought in Title IX actions. Injunctions may take the form of an order compelling an academic institution to cease an offending practice or an order compelling the institution to take specific action to level the playing field for the victims of discrimination. Prevailing Title IX plaintiffs may also recover attorney’s fees and expert witness fees pursuant to 42 U.S.C.A. § 1988. Additionally, when the Title IX defendant is a state government, plaintiffs may pursue remedies available under the Civil Right Act, which prohibits discrimination by state actors. 42 U.S.C.A. § 1983. Both compensatory and punitive damages are recoverable in section 1983 actions.
Litigants who are unhappy with a federal agency’s decision made pursuant to Title IX may generally appeal that decision to a federal district court as provided in 20 U.S.C.A. § 1683. However, if the agency’s decision involves terminating or refusing to grant or to continue financial assistance upon a finding of failure to comply with a Title IX requirements, then judicial review may only be pursued as provided in 5 U.S.C.A. § 701 et seq. Title IX does not contain a statute of limitations, so both administrative agencies and judicial bodies rely on the most analogous statute of limitations provided by the law of the state from which the discrimination complaint originated.