This section offers general information pertaining to the Office of the General Counsel for University community members. It does not, however, substitute for actual legal advice, which may be obtained directly from one of the attorneys in our office.
Q. Who does the Office of the General Counsel represent?
The Office of the General Counsel provides legal advice and representation to Yeshiva University and its affiliates. In that capacity, Office of the General Counsel attorneys advise the trustees, officers, faculty and staff, all in their official capacities, on various issues impacting the University.
Q. What type of legal services does the Office of the General Counsel provide?
The Office of the General Counsel is responsible for providing a full range of legal services to the University. Areas in which Office of the General Counsel attorneys provide legal advice include, but are not limited to: labor and employment, benefits, business matters, contract review, litigation, government investigation, environmental, copyright, patents, immigration, construction, property acquisition, student and faculty issues and clinical research and regulatory compliance.
Q. How can I contact the Office of the General Counsel?
The main office of the Office of the General Counsel is located on the Wilf Campus in Belfer Hall, Suite 1001. Our telephone number is 646.592.4400, our facsimile number is 212.960.5346 and our general e-mail address is GC@YU.edu.
Q. Where should process servers be directed to serve the University and/or its affiliates with subpoenas, summonses and the like?
Office of the General Counsel
2495 Amsterdam Avenue
Belfer Hall, Suite BH 1001
New York, NY 10033
Only authorized members of the Office of the General Counsel may accept service on behalf of the University.
Q. Can I retain outside counsel for a University matter?
No. Only the Office of the General Counsel can retain outside counsel on behalf of the University and its affiliates. If you believe legal counsel and/or representation is needed for a University matter, you should contact an attorney in the Office of the General Counsel who will determine whether outside counsel is necessary and appropriate; if so, the Office of the General Counsel attorney will retain an appropriate outside attorney for the matter.
Q. I need to have something signed by the University. Who has authority to sign?
The President, vice presidents and certain other senior administrators of the University are authorized to sign contracts and other documents on behalf of the University. Generally, this authority is limited to a specific area of responsibility. Please check with the Office of the General Counsel to determine who has the authority to sign a particular document on behalf of the University.
Q. Can the Office of the General Counsel represent or give legal advice to individual faculty members or students on non-University matters?
No. The Office of the General Counsel represents the University and its affiliates in connection with University-related matters. In a matter related to the University, the Office of the General Counsel may represent a University employee as well.
Q. Is what I tell you confidential?
Communications with the Office of the General Counsel are generally privileged as to third parties, but may not be as to other University officials. Nevertheless, we will generally strive to keep matters confidential to the extent practicable.
Q. I have been contacted by a third party and asked to forward to them a copy of a student's transcript and student file. Do I have the authority to access these files and forward them to a third party?
Normally, no. While a school official, including a member of the faculty, may have access to and obtain a copy of a student's education record for a legitimate educational interest, ordinarily the student's education record is confidential and cannot be viewed, accessed or released without the student's explicit permission.
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, also known as the FERPA or Buckley Amendment, is a federal law that limits the disclosure of a student's education record in order to safeguard the privacy of such information.
Please consult with an Office of the General Counsel attorney before sending any confidential document to any outside party.
If you have a question that has not been answered, please send an e-mail to GC@YU.edu, and we will make every effort to respond in a timely manner.