It's the notice you never want to receive: your Texas licensing board notifying you that a complaint has been filed against you and an investigation has been launched. When someone lodges allegations of misconduct against you, your license, livelihood, and reputation are on the line. Texas licensing boards and state agencies have the power to take a number of disciplinary actions, including license revocation, suspension, probation, and imposing fines.
It is critical that you are mindful of your responses after receiving a complaint notice. Every action you choose to take―or not take―can either help or harm your case.
Do's & Don't After Your Licensing Board Notifies You of An Investigation
Once you know you are the subject of an investigation conducted by your licensing board, there are best-practice actions to do and not to do.
Do: Actions to Take
- Face the allegations head-on. Even if you believe the complaint is meritless, it is important to take it seriously from the start. Even if you are certain the investigation will yield nothing, it is critical to face the allegations head-on and mount an effective defense from the start.
- Check your insurance coverage for board complaints and investigations. If you carry professional insurance, review your policy to determine what coverage, in any, it offers in defending against board complaints and allegations of misconduct.
- Consult with a professional license defense attorney. Our firm believes that immediately consulting an experienced license defense attorney to review allegations of misconduct helps ensure the most favorable outcome in your case.
- Timely respond to the board's complaint. Initial responses are critical and will dictate the possible outcomes in the case against you.
- Remember that the board's function is to protect the public, not your interests or your license.
Don't: Actions Not to Take
- Do not contact the board in an attempt to talk your way out of the complaint. You may unwittingly make a confession or give the investigator information that could harm your case. Anything you say can be used against you. Contact a professional license defense attorney and together you can craft well thought out and persuasive responses to the allegations made against you.
- Do not talk with colleagues, bosses, clients, or anyone else about the board complaint. Only communications with your attorney are protected by attorney-client privilege.
- Do not assume the complaint will go away because you think it lacks merit. Texas licensing boards have detailed complaint enforcement protocols they must follow by state law.
- Do not lie to the board. Texas licensing boards are staffed with good attorneys and investigators who know how to do their jobs. You do not want to get caught in a lie because that will make your situation and any disciplinary actions you will have to face significantly worse.
- Do not alter, destroy, or attempt to hide evidence. Your documents, records, notes and anything else that is relevant to the circumstances surrounding the allegations made against you are evidence in your case.
- Do not communicate with the board or attend any legal proceedings without your attorney present.
BERTOLINO LLP represents licensed professionals across the entire State of Texas. If you are facing disciplinary action from a professional licensing board, contact us today or call (800) 210-0126 and schedule a case evaluation.
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