Seeking Assistance if Your Oregon CNA License Is in Jeopardy
If you are facing nursing license disciplinary charges in Oregon, you are likely very concerned that the career you have worked so hard to achieve may be in jeopardy. This is understandable, as receiving a notice of disciplinary investigation or formal disciplinary proceedings from the Oregon State Board of Nursing (OSBN) is not a turn of events that should be treated lightly. The initiation of license disciplinary proceedings can significantly impact the career of any medical professional, including nurses who are entrusted daily with the safety and well-being of their patients. As a result, it is vitally important that you respond to your situation in a focused, timely, and strategically-sound way to better ensure that the outcome of your professional circumstances is a favorable one.
You have necessarily worked very hard to secure your Certified Nursing Assistant license in pursuit of a fulfilling and meaningful career in Oregon. Don't entrust your developing legal situation to a criminal defense legal team that has limited experience navigating cases like yours. Instead, reach out to the Lento Law Firm's Professional License Defense Team to ensure that your case is represented by attorneys who have extensive experience successfully defending CNA license challenges in Oregon and throughout the U.S. To get started, you can call our offices directly at calling 888-535-3686 or by reaching out online. We look forward to fighting on behalf of your hard-earned career.
Oregon State Board of Nursing License Proceedings
The Oregon State Board of Nursing holds meetings 12 times each calendar year. The Board takes disciplinary action, as necessary, at these meetings. These actions are taken within the scope of the Board's authority, which includes licensure, regulation of the nursing profession within the state, and discipline in the event that nurses – including Certified Nursing Assistants – fail to uphold their professional duties and obligations in accordance with the law.
Don't underestimate that the Oregon State Board of Nursing will take formal action against you and your ability to remain fully licensed if it feels that doing so is necessary to uphold its regulatory standards. Take, for example, the nurses targeted by the FBI as a result of Operation Nightingale. The Oregon State Board of Nursing opted to cooperate with the FBI while simultaneously investigating allegations of fraudulent nursing diplomas issued in Florida. In all, it was widely estimated that approximately 7,600 individuals may have been classified as potentially fraudulent graduates of three distinct Florida nursing programs. Of those nursing licensure applicants and active-duty nurses in Oregon initially impacted by this investigation, some voluntarily withdrew their license applications, and others had their applications denied or their licenses revoked. Some others had their cases dismissed without consequence.
The Operation Nightingale situation is just one example of how consequential OSBN disciplinary investigations and proceedings can be. Depending on the nature of your unique situation, you could face suspension or even outright revocation of your CNA license if the Board feels that you have violated the duties and obligations of your profession. If the Board takes formal disciplinary action against you, the status of your case – and any documents relating to your circumstances that the Board sees fit to publish – will be posted on the state's OSBN Verification System.
As a result of this approach, anyone (including future prospective employers) who looks up your license history will be able to view the ins and outs of your case with ease. This is one of the many reasons why it's so important to reach out to the Lento Law Firm's Professional License Defense Team as soon as you've received notice of a Board investigation or proceedings. Safeguarding your future is a time-sensitive, potentially consequential undertaking. Our team is up to the task, but we need to get working on crafting the strongest possible defense on your behalf right away.
Understanding Oregon State Board of Nursing Rules and Standards
When you're facing an investigation or formal disciplinary proceedings before the Oregon State Board of Nursing, you'll want to know as much as you can about how the Board operates with regard to cases like yours. After all, the saying “knowledge is power” is a cliché for a reason. The Oregon State Board of Nursing is empowered to resolve disciplinary charges that can affect CNA licensing under statutory authority granted by the state and its own internal regulatory standards and protocols. This is not uncommon, as each state regulates the nurses who practice their profession within its borders.
In order to benefit from the strongest possible defense, you'll want to reach out to the Lento Law Firm License Defense Team right away and begin cooperating with its members to the best of your ability. Our team has extensive knowledge of both the OSNB's approach to cases like yours and those of state nursing boards across the country. As a result of our depth and breadth of knowledge concerning nursing disciplinary defense, we can employ informed and creative strategies to your benefit. We'll also be able to clearly explain to you why we're adopting certain approaches given the unique rules and standards upheld by OSNB. By allowing our highly-qualified team to advocate on your behalf, you'll be serving your own interests well as circumstances related to your case unfold.
Confidence in Your Defense Against Oregon Nursing Charges
Due to the stakes of your situation, you're likely very concerned about its potential outcome. Both for your own well-being and because you need to be thinking clearly right now, you need to be confident in the ability of your defense team to advocate effectively on behalf of your interests. While the Lento Law Firm Professional License Defense Team – just like a patient's medical care team – can't make guarantees as to the outcome of a specific case, we can assure you that we have the experience necessary to seek the most favorable outcome possible under the circumstances and that we'll treat your case with the focused determination that it deserves. When your interests are being represented by our team, you'll rest easier and be better positioned to participate fully in your defense with a clear mind.
With that said, we understand that you may be panicking. Don't allow your case before the Oregon State Board of Nursing to default by failing to answer the charges you're facing simply because you're unsure of what to do. By defaulting, you'll ensure that you're disciplined in any way that the Board sees fit, even if you're completely innocent or you only deserve the lightest possible admonishment. Instead, call our team today so that we can get working on building the strongest possible defense on your behalf.
Valuing Your Oregon Certified Nursing Assistant License
If you're (understandably) panicking, it may be all too easy to simply say, “This is ridiculous. I'm not going to fight back against charges that are (bogus or, perhaps, lacking context). Let them discipline me. I don't care.” This is probably your fight, flight, or freeze instinct talking, not your rational mind. You're under acute stress, so the emotions of the moment may feel much more relevant than the reality that you have worked so hard to obtain your nursing license and that you need to treat it as the valuable asset that it is.
By fighting to maintain your license in good standing, you'll be in the best possible position to keep benefitting from the financial, professional, and personal rewards associated with being licensed not just in Oregon but anywhere else. If you're tempted to give up because you're frustrated, scared, or enraged, just remember that by working with the Lento Law Firm, you'll have a strong chance at safeguarding an investment in your present and future that you've sacrificed long and hard for.
What Oregon Nursing License Disciplinary Charges Mean
It's important to keep in mind that disciplinary charges do not result in a guaranteed outcome. Meaning, they are allegations, nothing more and nothing less. The Board has not yet decided to sanction you, and it has not yet determined that you have, indeed, engaged in actionable misconduct. As a result, you are permitted to submit evidence and otherwise mount a defense that could exonerate you from the charges you're facing. In the event that you cannot fully avoid discipline, a strong defense could result in lesser penalties that would ultimately protect the integrity of your license and the stability of your career. By working with the Lento Law Firm to craft a strong response to the investigation or charges in question, you'll be able to tell your side of the story as effectively as possible.
Communicating Your Side of the Story to Oregon State Nursing Board Members
Because the members of the OSBN regulate the nursing profession in Oregon, they are well aware of the hazards associated with nursing. They understand that it is a uniquely challenging profession and that no two patient care scenarios ever unfold in exactly the same ways. And although the Board will not hesitate to discipline you if it believes that you have knowingly or negligently violated the standards of your profession, its members understand far better than most that circumstances surrounding patient care are complex and that even the most dedicated, capable, and intelligent nurses may be unfairly accused of wrongdoing from time to time.
You'll want to take the opportunity to tell your side of the story seriously. If you present a compelling case, the Board may be sympathetic to your circumstances. Don't treat disciplinary action as a foregone conclusion. Work with the Lento Law Firm's premier Professional License Defense Team to safeguard your license and your reputation.
The Scope of Oregon State Board of Nursing Charges
When nurses are accused of professional wrongdoing and are investigated or subject to charges by a state-regulated board, the process of determining whether they should be disciplined or not unfolds in an administrative capacity. Meaning you aren't facing a criminal inquiry or being held to account by an alleged victim of your wrongdoing via a medical malpractice lawsuit when you're facing OSBN charges, specifically. You'll be navigating an administrative forum, not a criminal or civil court proceeding. As a result, you're “only” risking professional consequences in this context, not criminal penalties or financial liability. While it is arguably just as important to vigorously defend against OSBN charges as it is criminal or civil allegations, it's important to understand what you're facing right now, as well as what you're not.
You Don't Need to Worry About the Nursing Licensure Compact in Oregon
When nurses in 41 states are disciplined by the licensing boards in those states, the details of their license suspension or revocation are entered into a database maintained by the Nurse Licensure Compact. As a result of this information-sharing, when these disciplined nurses seek employment elsewhere – including in other participating states – their potential employers will be able to see the status of their license in the disciplining state, which can influence their hiring decisions. Oregon is one of nine states that doesn't participate in the Nurse Licensure Compact, which means that if you are disciplined, the stakes of your situation will remain high but will not involve this particular risk.
The Kinds of Allegations That Place an Oregon CNA License at Risk
There are myriad issues that could lead an individual or entity to file a complaint against a CNA with the Oregon State Board of Nursing. CNAs and other nurses are entrusted with life-and-death care of their patients, so it's not unusual when a patient suffers an unfavorable outcome, and they or their loved ones go searching for someone to blame, for example. Essentially, any conduct that suggests, demonstrates, or results in subpar approaches to patient care could lead a CNA to become the target of a complaint.
The Oregon State Board of Nursing's Disciplinary Process
The OSBN's disciplinary process usually begins when the Board receives a complaint about a particular professional. Complaints may or may not be filed anonymously and may be filed by any individual or entity. Investigation-related information is kept confidential in order to encourage transparency and to mitigate the risk that filing a complaint could lead to retaliation.
Per state law, the Board is required to evaluate/investigate complaints referred for assessment. The primary question that the Board is concerned with is whether the professional named in the complaint has violated the state's Nurse Practice Act. As these charges are investigated, the subject of concern can exercise their due process rights guaranteed under the Fourteenth Amendment. If a case is opened due to a complaint filed against you, you have a right to notice of that investigation and to present your side of the story during the investigative phase of the process. If the case progresses to a formal hearing stage, you'll be permitted to present a defense, as your property interest in your CNA license cannot be taken away without due process. Depending on the nature of your circumstances, the Lento Law Firm Professional License Defense Team may strategically invoke the investigatory and adjudication process proactively, to some extent, in order to present your defense in ways that are most likely to be effective.
Oregon State Board of Nursing Investigations
Not every complaint that is filed leads to a formal investigation. The Board may determine that the nature of a complaint falls outside of its jurisdiction or otherwise should not be pursued. But, if the Board deems it appropriate to investigate the claims made within a complaint, an investigator will begin gathering and reviewing relevant documentation.
The subject of the investigation may be interviewed in person or over the phone. This interview is confidential and informal, although that doesn't mean that a CNA should walk into the scenario unprepared. If you've been asked to sit for an interview, trust that your Lento Law Firm professional license defense attorney will help you to set expectations and to answer questions in ways that won't compromise the strength of your case. As the purpose of the interview is to gather facts about your situation, what you say and how you say it may ultimately influence what happens next. Therefore, it's important to take treat this phase of the process with the seriousness that it deserves. Your defense attorney is permitted to attend this interview with you in order to better ensure that your rights are safeguarded during the encounter.
The investigation phase of the process concludes when a confidential investigator report is submitted to the nine members of the Board. Hopefully, the case opened to investigate your circumstances will be closed after the investigative phase is closed. Retaining our team's strong advocates to help you present your side of the story effectively will place you in the best possible position to turn that goal into reality.
Oregon State Board of Nursing Determinations
After the investigative phase of the complaints process has concluded, the Board will consider the investigator's report at one of the 12 meetings that it holds annually. If the Board concludes that no violation of the Nurse Practice Act has occurred, it will dismiss the case against the professional in question. If it's determined that a violation of the Nurse Practice Act has occurred, the Board will determine which of the following actions to take against the alleged offender:
- Civil penalty in the form of a fine not to exceed $5,000.
- Denial of an applicant's request for a license or certificate.
- Dismissal of the case.
- Formal reprimand in the form of notice that a CNA has violated the law or rules of the profession.
- Letter of concern issued privately, alongside a dismissal of the case.
- Probation detailing specific conditions under which a CNA must practice for a period of time.
- Revocation of a CNA's license for a minimum of three years.
- Suspension of a CNA's license for a specific period of time.
Additionally, a CNA may opt to voluntarily surrender their license for a minimum of three years, depending on the circumstances of their case.
Why You Need a Nursing License Defense Attorney Representing Your Interests
When your CNA license is at stake, it's important to invest in the strongest possible defense. Unlike you, the Oregon State Board of Nursing has seemingly endless resources to advance its interests. You need someone on your side who won't let your case fall through the cracks. Even if you are totally innocent of wrongdoing, one misinterpreted concern could cost you everything you've worked for. Our team will do its utmost to see that this doesn't happen to you. We will use our team's wealth of knowledge and experience to seek the most favorable outcome – and the swiftest resolution – to your case that is possible under the circumstances.
Additionally, in the event that your case is resolved by the Board in ways that are unacceptably unfavorable to you, you'll have the option of requesting a contested hearing. Your case will then be heard by an Administrative Law Judge who will hear your case and issue a proposed order. The Board may or may not accept this proposed order when it issues a final order of its own. You need someone who understands the law inside and out to advocate on your behalf during this hearing, should requesting it become necessary. In extreme cases, our team can also appeal the Board's decision to the Oregon Court of Appeals and all the way up to the Oregon Supreme Court if such steps are necessary and prudent. Trying to navigate the legal complexities of these processes on your own would leave you in an incredibly vulnerable position. Allow us to have your back each and every step of the way instead.
We Serve CNAs All Over the State of Oregon
No matter where you live and work in Oregon, if your license is in danger, the dedicated members of the Lento Law Firm's Professional License Defense Team can advocate on behalf of your interests. We work with CNAs employed by large and small operations alike. Some of the CNAs we serve work for the following entities:
- Oregon Health & Science University
- Avamere Living
- Marquis Companies
- Prestige Care
- Kaiser Permanente
- Legacy Health
- Express Employment Professionals
- Salem Health
Speak with the Lento Law Firm's Professional License Defense Team About Oregon Nursing Charges
If you've been notified that a complaint has been filed against you and your CNA license is at stake, reach out to the Lento Law Firm's premier Professional License Defense Team for personalized guidance and assistance. You have worked hard to become a licensed medical professional. Don't let the reputation, financial investment, and professional opportunity you've done so much to achieve slip through your fingers. Just as hundreds of professionals just like you in Oregon and throughout the U.S. have done, allow our team to advocate for your interests as if they were our own. Call 888.535.3686 or go online to learn more and to start building your defense. We look forward to hearing from you.