Receiving a disciplinary complaint concerning your professional or occupational license is something that you always should take seriously, even if you believe the allegations against you to be meritless. Since a single complaint can have permanent adverse consequences for your career, you should protect yourself by getting the legal assistance you need. Do not hesitate to contact a Texas license defense attorney immediately when you receive notice of a complaint.
Trying to Handle Complaints on Your Own Can Backfire
When you receive a complaint from your disciplinary board or agency, particularly when you believe that it is groundless, you might think that you can handle the complaint on your own. After all, you should be able to simply call and explain your side of the story and get the complaint dismissed, right?
Unfortunately, explaining your actions on your own to your licensing board is not likely to have the outcome you desire. It also could worsen your situation if you attempt to resolve it without the benefit of legal advice. Giving the board too much information about your situation can lead to a markedly worse outcome in your case.
While it is human nature to want to explain your side of the story, you must remember that the licensing board’s role is to investigate complaints and determine if licensed professionals have committed any wrongdoing. Their job is to protect the public from misconduct by professionals, not to protect you. Therefore, if you inadvertently admit to some action that rises to the level of misconduct or a rules violation or gives the licensing board evidence against you that it did not already have, you could strengthen their case against you.
Hiring a Lawyer Does Not Make You Appear Guilty
You may be concerned that getting legal assistance with your disciplinary complaint signals to the licensing board that you are guilty of misconduct or have violated the rules or laws that govern your profession. However, exercising your right to be represented by an attorney is not indicative of guilt or innocence. Instead, you are simply taking the necessary steps to protect yourself and your license from unwarranted complaints.
Hiring a lawyer to represent your interests helps control the narrative you are presenting to the disciplinary board or agency. Your attorney can help devise the best strategy for presenting your defense to the allegations against you in a neutral manner that puts your actions in the best light possible. Instead of making you look guilty, having a professional license defense attorney is likely to have the opposite effect of making you look professional, competent, and innocent of the allegations against you.
Disciplinary License Defense is a Specialized Area of the Law
If you have never faced a disciplinary complaint, you may not be familiar with the processes that your disciplinary board or agency follows in handling complaints. Each professional or occupation is subject to different sets of rules, laws, and procedures, making professional license defense a very specialized area of the law. Most license holders are not familiar with those procedures and need the guidance of experienced legal counsel to help them successfully navigate disciplinary proceedings.
Disciplinary proceedings also typically contain different deadlines for responses and other requests. If you are unfamiliar with these procedures, you likely are unfamiliar with these deadlines. However, meeting these deadlines can be crucial, as missing them can have irreparable consequences. For example, a failure to timely respond to a complaint or request from a licensing board can result in disciplinary action or sanctions being automatically imposed on you. Therefore, a single missed deadline can have a disastrous outcome.
You are also likely to have many questions about the procedures your board will follow, what you can expect from the process, and the likelihood of you receiving sanctions from the disciplinary board based on your situation. Again, these are questions that only a seasoned license defense attorney can answer. Investigators or other staff members from the licensing board cannot answer these questions for you. Again, talking to them about your situation may lead to you inadvertently giving them information to use against you in your case.
Safeguard Your License by Seeking Legal Assistance Today
Disciplinary proceedings before your professional licensing board or agency could put you at risk of losing your license. As a result, you will need immediate legal representation to take the steps necessary to defend your license from these potentially severe consequences. At Bertolino, LLP, we offer experienced professional license defense services for individuals involved in various professions. Contact us today by calling (512) 515-9518 or contacting us online. We can analyze the circumstances that led to the complaint against you and determine the legal strategy that is best calculated to reach the best possible outcome in your case.