Minnesota state licensing boards oversee many professions, such as attorneys, doctors, nurses, teachers and much more. Licenses are issued after individuals meet strict education requirements. The road to professional licensing is often a significant investment of time, money and effort. Anyone who has a professional license at risk should mount a strong legal defense with a qualified Minnesota attorney.
After A Complaint: Having a license revoked often begins with a complaint. If a professional misconduct complaint is made, a licensing board will notify the indicated professional of the possibility of suspension or revocation of their license. Don’t procrastinate thinking a complaint will “just go away” or resolve itself. Even if a professional is innocent of the complaint filed, it is still critical to protect your professional integrity with aggressive legal representation during the review process.
Avoid Temporary Suspension: It is not uncommon for a licensing board to issue a temporary suspension of professional credentials during the course of an investigation of a complaint. A professional may think that a temporary suspension of their license is not a big deal. However, consider that the moment the temporary suspension is effective, your career is on hold. You can no longer do the work you invested so much time, money and effort to train for. It is also a blemish on your professional record that will never go away, even if the final outcome is in your favor and your professional license remains intact. A skilled legal professional can assist you in preventing temporary suspension during the course of an investigation.
When Ethics Are Concerned: To some, the area of professional ethics may seem like a gray area. An individual may be accused of an ethics violation yet be completely confused as to what, exactly, happened. Although some professional ethics guidelines are well-defined, such as doctor/patient confidentiality, there are some areas of ethics that appear discretionary. Professional legal advice from an attorney with experience in professional license cases becomes invaluable in proving that a person acted appropriately in a given situation.
Complexities: Although ethics may seemingly have gray areas, certain types of misconduct are very well-defined. When documented evidence is presented, a professional licensing case will present even more complexities. Some of the most common allegations of misconduct involve behaviors such as:
- Improper documentation (such as inaccurate patient care logs);
- Improper interaction with peers or superiors;
- Personal mental health diagnosis that affects professional ability;
- Proof of addiction to alcohol, narcotics or prescription medication;
- Improper relationship with a client.
Licensing Board Disciplinary Hearing: Hearing the four words, “licensing board disciplinary hearing”, is something any professional would dread. If that is a possibility in your future, don’t delay in consulting with an attorney. Although not criminal court, the consequences of such a hearing can be just as devastating as a criminal conviction determined in your local county courthouse. Losing a professional license will alter the course of your life. It is a qualified legal professional who should present evidence on your behalf and argue in your defense so that, at the end of the day, you walk away with your professional license intact.
Legal Specialty: It takes special skill and expertise to provide effective legal assistance at a licensing board disciplinary hearing. Appropriate investigation prior to the hearing is required to gather all of the facts in a case. A legal specialist in professional licensing will know how to most effectively use the facts and evidence of a case to work toward the best outcome for a client. Professionals should not represent themselves but put their trust in legal counsel to preserve their future and protect their credentials.
Act Now: The moment a professional has knowledge that a complaint has been filed with a licensing board, that is the time to act. Delay could cost you your career. The first step at protecting your future is to contact us. Make an appointment for a consultation with an attorney that has the specific expertise your case needs.
Disclaimer: The content of this article does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Please contact Jennifer Speas to discuss the specifics of your case.