Does a Headache Allow an Exam Reschedule?

A George Mason law student develops a migrane during an exam. The proctors refuse her request for additional time. After more back-and-forth with the school, the student claims to suffer “intractable migraine syndrome” and sues for discrimination and retaliation. The district court dismissed the lawsuit, but that decision gets reversed by the Fourth Circuit.

Two observations:

1) While legitimate ailments absolutely need protection, I imagine almost all professors cringe at the thought that a student could ask for more time based on an ailment that arises mid-exam and isn’t easily verifiable. This certainly could create some student gamesmanship that would be problematic for all students, the professor and grading system integrity generally.

2) Migraine + a single law school exam = 4th circuit opinion?! Further confirmation that law student-initiated litigation is among the most pernicious and intractable. One would have hoped that the parties could have worked something out without multiple judicial opinions for a matter like this.

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