Being professionally disciplined isn't something anyone ever wants to happen to them, but it does—and to some of the smartest, most ethical, hard-working professionals, including medical professionals. Facing disciplinary actions, especially if you feel as though they have materialized out of the blue, may feel like a career-breaker, putting in jeopardy the very vocation you've passionately worked toward for years or decades. But it doesn't have to turn out that way. You have choices and recourses. Approaching accusations related to medical malpractice, the welfare of a patient, or a similar issue with a clear mind and a solid game plan, and with the support of an experienced legal advisor, can get you through this as soon as possible and back to doing what you love and are skilled at, and will hopefully help you move forward in the life you envisioned for yourself.
If you are a physician licensed by the Montana Board of Medical Examiners and facing disciplinary actions, it's time to take action and seek the guidance of a professional who is highly skilled in this area. The board treats these cases with the utmost seriousness, and facing them alone is not advisable. The Lento Law Firm's Professional License Defense Team understands the importance of your career in medicine and pulls from a deep body of experience in this area to protect physicians' rights, negotiate with the Board of Medical Examiners when appropriate, and facilitate communication between both parties to seek and secure a positive resolution in the event of a disciplinary proceeding. Our Professional License Defense Team will analyze your case, guide you through your various options, and advocate for your licensure.
We represent physicians in areas with large patient numbers like Billings, Great Falls, Kalispell, Missoula, Helena, and Bozeman, as well as other markets such as Havre, Butte, Browning, and Fort Harrison.
Montana Board of Medicine License Discipline
The Montana Department of Labor & Industry and Professional and Occupational Licensing Boards are responsible for taking disciplinary action against physicians for a range of reasons, outlined in Title 37 of the Montana Code Annotated (MCA)'s Uniform Regulatory Act (Chapter 1, Part 3 of the code). Infractions related to unprofessional conduct include the following examples:
- Being found guilty of a crime involving violence, drugs, fraud, or theft.
- Fraudulently misrepresenting your credentials in relation to securing or renewing your license or taking a qualifying exam.
- Bribing government staff in order to get around laws, rules, or ordinances related to practicing medicine.
- Divulging an individual's confidential information.
- Having a disability – mental or physical – that renders you unable to practice medicine safely.
- Practicing medicine while knowingly having a contagious or infectious disease that poses a serious risk to public health.
- Using alcohol or other drugs in a way that affects your professional duties.
- Misusing a client or employer's property or finances.
- Breaking a law related to certification or licensure.
- Providing false information about your skills.
- Not complying with the requirements of your license.
- Harassing or threatening a witness or client related to an investigation or disciplinary proceeding or interfering with one in any way.
- Allowing someone else to practice under your license.
- Withholding information about any malpractice suits you are involved in.
- Any other conduct that doesn't align with generally accepted standards of practicing medicine.
Administrative Suspension of Your Medical License
Having your medical license revoked may be the most frightening outcome, but you could also have your license administratively suspended for a variety of reasons, including:
- Not paying administrative fees pertaining to your license.
- Being believed to not be qualified for your license in the first place.
- Not responding to a board or department audit.
- Failing to meet a certification or continuing education requirement.
If your license is administratively suspended, there will likely not be any related disciplinary action, but you cannot practice medicine during this time. If you do, you could face serious consequences. If you find yourself in this situation, it is very important not to worsen circumstances. Be sure to comply with all requirements, keep your contact information current with the board, ensure your fees are paid, and thoroughly complete and submit a “proof of curing the deficiency” application with sufficient evidence that you have corrected any deficiencies, as they relate to your situation, along with a reinstatement fee. If you fail to do this within the allotted time frame, your license will expire and cannot be renewed until you have rectified the situation.
Looking Up The Status of Your Medical License
The Montana Department of Labor & Industry maintains a public portal called the Licensee Lookup System, on which anyone can search for your license status, including whether it is on an administrative suspension (even though this isn't considered disciplinary action). This is where investigations into your license may be made public, as well as any disciplinary sanctions you are facing, although some may not appear right away on the portal. If you appeal a finding, this is where that information would be published as well, although there is often a time delay. The Montana Board of Medical Examiners does not take this topic lightly, and they will move swiftly to discipline those they feel have violated standards, given the high degree of responsibility you have toward public health and patient well-being.
If you are a licensed physician practicing in Billings, Bozeman, Butte-Silver Bow, Missoula, Great Falls, Helena, Kalispell, Belgrade, Anaconda-Deer Lodge County, Helena Valley, Havre, Whitefish, Livingston, or anywhere in Montana, and face disciplinary sanctions from the state Medical Board of Medical Examiners, rely on the Lento Law Firm's winning Professional License Defense Team to help you navigate this challenge.
Confidence in Your Defense of Montana Physician Charges
You were inspired to enter into the medical field to reduce pain, heal, save lives, and make a positive impact on people. This will always be true, but it can be disheartening and confusing to self-reflect on this motivation when facing accusations that paint you in a different light. It's not uncommon for medical professionals in your place to feel demoralized or conflicted about your work and the choices and sacrifices you've made. It's important to keep a clear head and then seek support by calling the Lento Law Firm, which can help you strategize your options and work with the Montana Board of Medical Examiners. Your professional reputation and future are at stake, and we are here to help safeguard them.
The Lento Law Firm's trusted Professional License Defense Team will answer your questions, advise you of your rights and options, and help you address any disciplinary charges you are facing. It's important you do not disregard the allegations or default in answering the charges you face and contact the Lento Law Firm before doing so.
The Value of Your Montana Physician's License
We recognize how important your professional license is to you, your family, and your loved ones. Hiring a strong defense is a show of love to all of those above. The investment you've made is significant. Think about the years, late nights, medical school costs, and time you've sacrificed. Don't let go of that investment in your future by retaining the Lento Law Firm Professional License Defense Attorney Team today.
What Do Montana Physician License Disciplinary Charges Mean?
If you're facing disciplinary charges, you probably have many questions. What did you do wrong, if anything? Will you for sure lose your medical license? And your job? Not necessarily.
Disciplinary charges are accusations of misconduct, not formal findings that any allegations are supported. Your side of the story deserves to be told. Begin gathering documentation that disproves allegations. Retaining our Professional License Defense Attorney Team can help you identify and prioritize the best evidence to support your side.
Up Against the Montana Board of Medical Examiners
It is true that the Montana Board of Medical Examiners takes allegations of wrongdoing seriously and investigates and prosecutes physicians for violations, but also remember that disciplinary officials comprehend that doctors can be unfairly implicated or unjustly accused. Most physicians in Montana are ethical, skilled, responsible professionals. Your voice deserves to be heard, and you can count on the Lento Law Firm's premier Professional License Defense Team to get you that platform.
Understanding Montana Board of Medical Examiner Charges
An administrative hearing can result in your license being restricted, suspended, or revoked, or in financial penalties, but the scope of the board does not extend beyond this. For example, the board cannot require you to pay damages to a complainant. However, as a physician, you could also face criminal charges, but the licensing board is not the authority to make such decisions. What these two different processes share, however, is your right to due process.
Montana Board of Medical Examiners Complaints
The disciplinary process for licensed Montana physicians is initiated by someone filing a complaint with the Montana Department of Labor & Industry, either online or by email, by fax, or through the postal service. This is first reviewed by Compliance staff, who will forward a copy to you, requesting your written response. At this point, an investigator may seek witness statements from individuals beyond the complainant. Once the investigation is over, the findings, as well as your original response, are submitted to Screening Panel members to consider whether to issue disciplinary action. This is not a hearing.
If disciplinary action is recommended, it will request that the Montana Department of Labor & Industry's legal counsel submit to you a Notice of Proposed Board Action and Opportunity for Hearing. They may also suspend your license at this point, ahead of a hearing, if they feel as though public health and welfare are at imminent risk. At this point, the investigation becomes public.
Now you need to decide how to handle the complaint against you – sign a Stipulation or request a hearing? You must choose one, or face a Final Order of Default. It is paramount that you address this quickly. The Lento Law Firm's premier Professional License Defense Team can answer your questions, advise you on which path to take, and guide and advocate for you should you decide to request a hearing. Don't let this vital window of time slip away. Contact the Lento Law Firm while you have time to fight for your profession.
Will I Have the Chance to Appeal?
Again, you are entitled to due process, per the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. This means the board must notify you of the charges and offer you an opportunity to defend yourself in a hearing.
Once the investigation is complete, you may have the opportunity to contest the findings, or you may decide to admit to certain allegations and agree to undergo disciplinary sanctions. Or, you could decide on a stipulated agreement. The Lento Law Firm can advise you if these options are recommended courses of action.
To contest the findings, you'll need to request an impartial hearing. This could take several months, so you may wish to put this in the hands of a professional in this area rather than spending months trying to leverage the nuances and complexities of this process over a long period of time. At the conclusion of the contested hearing, the hearing officer will make a recommendation to an Adjudication Pane, who will issue a Final Order.
When you make the commitment to yourself to secure the best defense possible, The Lento Law Firm's highly skilled and experienced Professional License Defense Team goes to work for you right away. They may invoke the protected right you have to a fair and impartial investigatory and adjudicatory process and provide your best defense.
Why Hire a Physician License Defense Attorney in Montana?
There are few answers to this question. First, the Board of Medical Examiners and the Department of Labor & Industry, have access to robust resources to pursue complaints against license-holders. Because of the nature of your profession, they understandably take complaints very seriously and leave no stone unturned when actively investigating. This can, at times, put physicians attempting to represent themselves in a dicey and vulnerable position. The adage “fight fire with fire” is as appropriate here as anywhere else. Just as it would be inadvisable for a legal team to attempt to practice medicine or provide skilled healthcare, it may not be the wisest, most efficient, or most economically responsible strategy for a healthcare professional to go toe to toe with the Medical Board. One asset the Lento Law Firm brings to the table is our demonstrated ability to work with licensing boards and negotiate with them when that is the appropriate approach.
The other piece to consider is that because the Montana Medical Board of Examiners needs to only establish reasonable cause, rather than proving you did “beyond a reasonable doubt,” this can be more complex to defend for someone without experience in the preponderance of evidence standard.
How a License Defense Attorney Can Help Montana Physicians
The Lento Law Firm's Professional License Defense Team brings numerous assets to the table when your license is on the line. You are never alone; our team is with you, offering clear, prudent counsel throughout this process. We stay in close communication with the Montana Board of Medical Examiners on your behalf, supplying evidence and arguments with the goal of seeing your charges dismissed or discarded early. The right attorney should also help you gather evidence or relevant circumstances that could reduce the severity of any consequences, fully prepare you for any administrative hearings, and assist you with appealing or challenging the board's decision about your license.
Montana Areas We Serve
The Professional License Defense Team at the Lento Law Firm is available to represent you wherever you practice in Montana, including Billings, Great Falls, Kalispell, Missoula, Helena, Bozeman, Havre, Butte, Browning, Fort Harrison, or elsewhere.
Your Montana Physicians License Defense Team
Whatever your area of specialty is as a licensed physician in Montana, you can confront charges that put your profession on the line with confidence when you work with the Lento Law Firm. Montana's Board of Medical Examiners won't take a fight lying down when there has been a complaint against a physician. We won't either. We have your back.
Like physicians and other licensed professionals across the country, you can trust the Lento Law Firm's Professional License Defense Team to come to your defense if you face disciplinary charges related to your license. Call 888.535.3686 or contact us online now.