Before a California professional licensing agency or board (including, but not limited to, the CA Commission on Teacher Credentialing, the CA Board of Registered Nursing, the CA Department of Consumer Affairs, the CA Vocational Nursing Board, the CA Department of Insurance, the CA Bureau of Real Estate, the CA Dental Board, the CA Board of Occupational Therapy, the CA Board of Behavioral Sciences, the CA Department of Social Services, CA Respiratory Care Board, the CA Court Reporters Board, the CA Medical Board) can deny, suspend, revoke or otherwise discipline your professional license, you have a right to an administrative hearing. Furthermore, you have a right to be represented in all administrative hearing proceedings by an attorney. In fact, it is crucial that if you find yourself in a position where you are fighting for your CA professional license, that you have an experienced professional license defense attorney like Jonathan Turner on your side.
Many licensees believe that they can go it alone and simply represent themselves at an administrative hearing. These licensees ( medical doctors, credentialed teachers, licensed nurses, therapists, dentists, insurance agents and brokers, real estate agents and brokers, etc…) are not aware of how complex administrative proceedings really are. Administrative hearings are formal court trials entailing judges, experienced attorneys (often with the CA Attorney General’s Office) representing the licensing agency or board, unique rules of evidence, documentary exhibits, subpoenas, expert witnesses, and live witness testimony. (See the CA Administrative Procedures Act – CA Government Code section 11500-11529 for more info.)
Moreover, many CA professional licensees challenging the proposed denial, suspension or revocation of their license, are not aware that they are not only entitled to an administrative hearing but that they may also be entitled to a pre-hearing conference and a settlement conference.
Pre-hearing conferences and settlement conferences are sanctioned by CA Government Code section 11511.5. However, these proceedings are generally not automatically set and must be requested by the parties. As an experienced administrative law and license defense attorney, I routinely request such hearings prior to any scheduled administrative trial. I find these proceedings helpful in assisting me in mapping out my strategy for the upcoming administrative hearing. It often sheds light on the government’s case and helps me streamline my own client’s case for hearing so that we put on the best case possible.
Additionally, pre-hearing conferences may include a settlement conference component. Often as an attorney defending licensed teachers, nurses, doctors, healthcare professionals, etc… I am able to work out a settlement with the licensing board or agency that allows my client to retain or obtain their license without the necessity of a long and stressful administrative hearing. Such settlement conferences, wherein an administrative law judge with the Office of Administrative Hearing actively participates and mediates between the parties, are fruitful ways of putting together a settlement agreement or stipulation that pleases all parties.
In short, if you are being investigated by a CA professional licensing agency or board or have received an Accusation or Statement of Issues from one of these agencies, you need a CA professional license defense attorney on your side. Contact Sacramento, CA professional license defense attorney Jonathan Turner for a free consult. I handle every type of professional licensing case all over CA.