As a licensed healthcare professional in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, or New York, your entire career hinges on your professional license remaining intact. When that license is jeopardized by consumer complaints or allegations of misconduct, it can throw your future into uncertainty, cast doubt on your competency, and deteriorate the public's trust in your abilities. Attorney Joseph D. Lento is an experienced professional license defense attorney who has represented many healthcare professionals facing licensing issues, and he can help you avoid serious repercussions against your license.
The Lento Law Firm can assist the following licensed healthcare professionals with professional license investigations, disciplinary hearings, reinstatement requests, etc.
Physicians are held to high ethical and professional standards by their state's Board of Medical Examiners. You could face disciplinary action for prescribing medication outside of accepted standards of care, violating medical ethics, allegations of insurance fraud, sexual misconduct, criminal convictions, and more. Disciplinary actions could range from formal reprimands and probation to having your license suspended or revoked--and any action taken by the board will be a matter of public record, potentially damaging your career even if you get to keep your license. A good attorney can interact with the board at the first sign of trouble to help mitigate this damage.
As a dentist, you are responsible for maintaining adequate dental records, maintaining acceptable standards of care, adhering to continuing education requirements, and more. If you are accused of neglecting your responsibilities or engaging in unprofessional conduct, you could face disciplinary action from the state dental board. This could result in anything from a formal reprimand to the revocation of your dental license. We can help you present your case to the board and negotiate a favorable outcome.
Nurses may be disciplined by their state nursing board for a wide range of offenses, including criminal convictions, inadequate performance of nursing duties, patient neglect, DUI, fraudulent licensure or certification applications, and more. The board could revoke your license, suspend it for a period of time, put you on probation with reporting requirements, limit your license to certain procedures only, require continuing education courses before re-licensure—the penalties vary widely depending on the nature of the offense. An experienced attorney can intervene on your behalf with the board, both during the investigation and during any formal hearings, to make sure your side is heard and to minimize the damage to your career.
The Code of Federal Regulations defines nurse practitioners as advanced practice nurses, but each state has its own laws regarding nurse practitioner certification and licensure. Since a nurse practitioner can do many of the things a licensed physician can do (including prescribing medications), NPs can face disciplinary actions for many of the same complaints filed against physicians, including violating professional/ethical boundaries with patients, improper handling of medications, criminal convictions, and other offenses. Hiring a skilled professional license defense attorney when you're first notified of an investigation is the best way to reduce the risks to your license to practice.
An audiologist could face disciplinary action for any number of complaints, including allegations that you are practicing beyond the scope of your credentialing or certifications, prescribing unauthorized medications, violating standards of care, committing insurance fraud, failing to meet continuing education requirements, failing to adhere to your state's licensing code of ethics, etc. If you are notified by the licensing board that your license is under investigation, we can help you understand and respond to the complaint to minimize or avoid any damage to your career.
Chiropractors must be held to high standards of ethical conduct, especially considering their profession often includes plenty of physical contact with a patient. Allegations of unprofessional or sexual misconduct, incompetent treatment, and other complaints can quickly put your career in jeopardy. With the expertise of a skilled license defense attorney, the risks of losing your license go down considerably.
Licensed professional counselors are entrusted with people's mental health, and acts of misconduct, unprofessionalism, or incompetence can have serious repercussions on patients. For that reason, even a suggestion of misconduct can trigger a damaging investigation. We help LPCs, LMHCs, LACs, and other licensed counselors who are facing potential career-ending accusations.
Like other healthcare professionals, dental hygienists can find themselves the target of disciplinary action by their state board for a variety of reasons. Charges may include incompetence, unprofessional behavior, sexual misconduct, substance abuse, and more. Often, these investigations are started as the result of a complaint from a colleague or patient. If you're notified that your license is being investigated, it's important to have an experienced attorney guide you through the process and protect your rights.
EMTs and Paramedics
Emergency medical technicians (EMTs) and paramedics are in a high-risk profession, and any accusations of misconduct or incompetence can lead to serious penalties, including the loss of your certification or license. Disciplinary actions may be triggered by a wide range of infractions, including DUI and other criminal convictions, substance abuse, negligent handling of medications, violations of EMT standards of care, violations of patient privacy or confidentiality, and other offenses that violate the public trust. We can intervene on your behalf to defend your competence to the licensing board and negotiate for the best possible terms to save your license or certification.
Marriage & Family Therapists
Licensed marriage and family therapists (LMFTs) often work with some of the most vulnerable members of our society, so any allegations of misconduct or incompetence can be particularly damaging. Common complaints against MFTs include allegations of practicing beyond the scope of their license, violating patient confidentiality, substance abuse, and others. If you are notified that your license is under investigation, we can represent your interests to the licensing board to develop a compelling defense and protect your career.
Occupational therapists are held accountable both by state licensing boards and the codes of conduct required by their certification through the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). Allegations of misconduct, negligence, alcohol/drug abuse, and other violations can lead to serious penalties, including decertification. We represent occupational therapists who are facing disciplinary action by their board or NBCOT and work to protect their certification and livelihood.
Optometrists are licensed to diagnose and treat vision problems and are also required to follow a strict code of ethics. Complaints that may lead to disciplinary action include allegations of unprofessional conduct, sexual misconduct, medication violations, substance abuse, or criminal convictions. We are experienced in representing optometrists who are under investigation by their board or facing a possible license suspension.
Pharmacists are responsible for the safe and effective distribution of medications, and any allegations of misconduct or negligence can have serious consequences to their license because of the damage such misconduct can cause to patients. Common complaints that can lead to disciplinary action include allegations of dispensing medications without a prescription, mistakes in filling prescriptions, inadequate patient counseling, substance abuse, etc. We can intervene to defend your case to the licensing board and work for the best possible outcome.
Physician assistants (PAs) are held to high standards of conduct similar to physicians since they work closely with doctors and often perform the same functions. Any complaints alleging professional misconduct, sexual misconduct, negligence, inappropriate handling of medicines, or other violations can lead to serious consequences such as the loss of license. We work with PAs who are facing possible disciplinary actions to mitigate the damage to their license.
Psychologists are licensed not only to diagnose and treat psychological problems but also to conduct mental health assessments and research underlying causes for mental illness and personality disorders. Due to their heavy involvement in the human psyche, even a hint of misconduct can trigger an investigation and possible disciplinary action such as fines, license suspension, or revocation. Common reasons for complaints include inappropriate behavior toward clients, violations of patient confidentiality, sexual misconduct with a client, substance abuse, etc. Involving an experienced license defense attorney early in the investigative process can potentially save your license to practice.
Speech-language pathologists are licensed by the same state licensing board as audiologists and therefore are held to the same standards of professionalism and conduct upheld by these boards. We have a track record of success in representing speech-language pathologists who are facing an investigation by their board or licensing authority over allegations of unprofessionalism, misconduct, fraud, and other offenses.
What a Professional License Defense Attorney Can Do for You
There are multiple opportunities in any disciplinary process for a license defense attorney to intervene on your behalf, greatly improving your chances for a favorable outcome. An attorney can:
- Evaluate the complaint against you and let you know what's at stake
- Help you craft a compelling response to allegations and an effective defense to the charges
- Represent you in an official capacity in all dealings with the licensing board
- Negotiate with the board for dismissal of the complaint or more lenient disciplinary actions that enable you to keep your license
- Advise you on whether it is prudent to accept an offer of a consent decree
- Act as your advocate in formal hearings before the board or an Administrative Law Judge
- Coordinate petitions for reinstatement of your license if it has already been suspended or revoked
If you are a healthcare professional who has been notified by the licensing board of an investigation into your license, don't take unnecessary chances with your career. Attorney Joseph D. Lento can help you protect your professional license and limit the potential for damage to your practice. Call the Lento Law Firm today at 888-535-3686 to learn more.