Top Women of Law

Sarah H. Fay
Rated by Super Lawyers

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“Sarah Fay is accessible, efficient and knowledgeable!”
~Dean of Students, Independent School

“Thank you -- yet again! -- for always being so available and responsive to our needs. These docs are exactly what we needed.”
~ Head of School, Independent School

“Great speaker. Professional and knowledgeable.”
~ Workshop Attendee, Independent Schools Association

“Clear, comprehensive, obviously an expert with lots of experience.”
~ Workshop Attendee, Independent Schools Association

“Thanks again for doing such a great presentation with our faculty and staff. You are clear, thoughtful and personable -- and that is a great combination.”
~ Head of School, Independent School

“Articulate, knowledgeable, great!”
~ Workshop Attendee, Independent Schools Association


Sarah H. Fay

Managing Partner

Sarah H. Fay is Managing Partner of Schwartz Hannum PC and a member of the Firm’s Education Practice group. She focuses on the unique legal needs of early child care programs, independent primary and secondary schools, and colleges and universities. Sarah advises these clients on all aspects of school operations, including student and parent issues, employment matters, governance issues, and crisis management.

Sarah routinely advises the Firm’s education clients on the legal framework for admissions processes and enrollment contracts; accommodating students with disabilities; responding to and investigating student interpersonal misconduct; disciplinary matters; student health and safety; risk management strategies for off-campus trips; student records and confidentiality issues; and policies and practices for promoting an inclusive community. For educational institutions that receive federal funding, Sarah assists with Title IX compliance. Sarah also represents schools against breach of contract, consumer protection claims, and disability discrimination claims.

In addition, Sarah counsels clients on the full spectrum of employee matters, including conducting reference and background checks; faculty contracts and offer letters; implementing performance improvement plans; managing leaves; and voluntary early retirement plans, reductions in force, and terminations. Sarah works closely with clients to develop strategies that comply with applicable laws and reflect best practices while maintaining the unique culture of each school.

As part of her practice, Sarah educates students on the evolving definition of consent, anti-bullying and anti-hazing training, acceptable use of technology and social media risks, and other key issues students may confront. In addition, she provides training for faculty, staff, and school administrators on topics ranging from professional boundaries, child abuse and neglect reporting, conducting investigations into student and employee misconduct, accommodating students with disabilities, and other topics unique to the school setting. Sarah is also a frequent presenter at national and local independent school conferences on education law issues.


Massachusetts Court Holds That Harvard College Satisfied Its Duty To Prevent A Student's Suicide

Court Addresses Scope Of Schools' Duty To Prevent Student Suicide

First Circuit Decision Underscores Importance Of Effective Enrollment Agreements And Student Handbooks

Immunizations And Communicable Diseases: What Independent Schools Need To Know

Mental Health Concerns Lead To New Responsibilities For Schools

Is Your School Subject To The GDPR?

New Connecticut Law Illustrates Growing Background Check Obligations For Schools

SJC Ruling May Require Massachusetts Employers To Accommodate Medical Marijuana Use

Student Uprisings Highlight Diversity And Inclusion Issues For Independent Schools

Artificial Turf: Fertile Ground For Litigation?


Getting It Write: Student Handbooks In General And In The COVID-19 Climate

Summer Camp Risk Management: Topics To Consider In General And In The COVID-19 Climate

Summer Camp Risk Management: Topics To Consider In General And In The COVID-19 Climate

NAIS Annual Conference: Technology And The School Community: Legal Strategies For Managing Risky Business

International Students: Recommendations For Best Practices In General And In The COVID-19 Environment

Supporting Transgender, Gender Non-Conforming, And LGBTQ Students At Independent Schools

Risk Management Strategies For Off-Campus Trips And Activities

NAMWOLF CLE Session: Mary Tyler Moore's Dream Come True? The Emergence Of New Pay Equity Laws

NBOA Webinar "Employee Participation Committees: Are You Dealing With A Labor Union?"

National Business Officers Association (NBOA) 2019 Annual Meeting


SJC Ruling May Require Massachusetts Employers To Accommodate Medical Marijuana Use

OSHA Expands Reporting And Record-Keeping Requirements And Changes Employer Exemptions

Artificial Turf: Fertile Ground For Litigation?

Sarah H. Fay


T: 978-623-0900

F: 978-623-0908



  • New England Law | Boston (2014), cum laude
  • University of Pennsylvania (2008)


  • American Bar Foundation Fellow (April 2024 To Present)
  • Honored as a Top Women of Law by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly (2023)
  • Selected as an Up and Coming Lawyer by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly (2020)
  • Selected as a Massachusetts Super Lawyers® Rising Star (2017 - 2023)

Awards & Accolades

  • New England Scholar Award
  • University of Pennsylvania Women's Swimming & Diving Co-Captain

Bar Admissions

Rhode Island

U.S. Court of Appeals

  • First Circuit

U.S. District Court

  • Massachusetts

Professional Affiliations

  • American Bar Association
  • Boston Bar Association
  • Massachusetts Bar Association
  • Rhode Island Bar Association
  • The National Business Officers Association
  • The National Association Of Independent Schools
  • The National Association Of Minority And Women Owned Law Firms