Professional Engineer License Lawyer Joseph D. Lento Can Help Save Your License
A single complaint, a simple misunderstanding, a single misstep, or a lapse in judgment—this is all it may take to put your professional engineering license in jeopardy. If you are a licensed professional engineer in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, or New York and have been accused of misconduct, Attorney Joseph D. Lento can help. Contact the Lento Law Firm at (888) 535-3686 today to schedule a consultation.
Acquiring a professional engineer (PE) license requires dedication and effort. Becoming a licensed professional engineer requires extensive schooling, on-the-job training, and passing difficult exams. In addition to these technical demands, PEs also carry the weight of public trust; even small errors can result in unfortunate outcomes. So it comes as little surprise that allegations of negligence or misconduct could easily put you in danger of having your professional engineer license revoked.
Over the years, Joseph D. Lento and his law firm have assisted many licensed professionals just like you who are accused of misconduct and therefore risk disciplinary action. Their team will work to minimize the damage to your license and help you achieve a more favorable outcome.
What types of allegations could put my professional engineering license in jeopardy?
Most violations that could result in the loss of your PE license are due to violations of standards and practices set by your state. These are the most common reasons for losing your professional engineering license:
- Criminal convictions. You may be disqualified from being a licensed professional engineer if you are convicted of certain crimes. Each state has its own definitions of what constitutes a disqualifying offense, but most states include DUI, crimes involving moral turpitude (e.g., theft, assault, murder, fraud) as well as felony offenses. Many licensing boards also require that you report any convictions of a crime. Failure to report can lead to your license being revoked or suspended.
- Substance abuse. Alcohol and drug abuse are a cause of concern for professional engineering licensing boards because these substances can cloud your judgment, making it difficult to do your job safely.
- Gross negligence/incompetence.Repeated code violations and errors can definitely put your license in jeopardy--especially if those errors result in accidents that involve injuries or fatalities.
What happens when someone files a complaint against my license?
After verifying that the complaint falls within the licensing board's jurisdiction, the board will open an investigation. They may appoint an investigator to review documents, gather evidence, and talk to witnesses. They may also ask you to respond to the complaint in writing.
If the evidence against you is compelling, the board might offer to let you sign a consent order in lieu of a formal hearing. A consent order is a legally binding agreement in which you acknowledge wrongdoing and agree to the board's recommended disciplinary actions. If no consent order is signed, you will be asked to show cause in a formal hearing why the board should not act against your license. After the hearing ends, the board will make its final decision on punishment, up to and including having your professional engineer license revoked.
Could the board issue lesser penalties that allow me to keep my license?
Yes, depending on the facts of your case, you may be given lesser penalties like fines or reprimands. However, even if your professional engineer license is not revoked, any disciplinary action against your license could still cause damage to your career since it will be publicly recorded and searchable. The risk of harm can be reduced by hiring an experienced professional engineer license lawyer like Joseph D. Lento. Mr. Lento and his team can intervene and negotiate with the board to minimize damage both to your license and your reputation.
Why do I need an attorney to help resolve my complaint?
You are immediately placed on the defensive when a complaint is made against you because the state licensing board has sweeping authority to issue discipline, and they don't require a high burden of proof. If you attempt to resolve the complaint on your own, chances are higher that the licensing board will actually use your efforts against you. Hiring a good attorney with specific experience in license defense helps put you on a more level playing field, and in many cases, it can make the difference between keeping and losing your engineer's license.
Attorney Joseph D. Lento can:
- Review the complaint against you and devise a defense strategy.
- Compile evidence and gather witnesses to support your defense.
- Act as your official legal representative in all interactions with the board.
- Draft a compelling written response to the complaint with supporting evidence (which, in many cases, may result in the complaint being dropped before proceeding further).
- Negotiate with the licensing board directly to have the complaint dropped or for lesser penalties that allow you to keep your license.
- Defend you in a formal hearing, if needed.
I've been notified of a complaint against my professional engineer's license. When should I hire an attorney?
Honestly, as soon as possible. If you wait until the board summons you for a hearing, you'll be coming into the process on the defensive. Hiring a good professional engineer license lawyer early in the process provides more opportunities to resolve the complaint and make a hearing unnecessary.
What To Do If Your Engineer License is Revoked
If your engineer license is revoked, you will no longer be able to work as an engineer in your state. Depending on the reason for revocation, you may also have difficulty being licensed in other states. If you want to continue working as an engineer, your best bet is to file an appeal of the licensing board's decision or to reapply for your license. An experienced license defense attorney can advise you of your best options for getting a revoked license reinstated.
Any complaint against your professional engineer's license should be taken seriously--otherwise, it could result in the loss of your license or other harmful disciplinary actions. Take steps now to protect your career. Contact the Lento Law Firm today at (888) 535-3686 to discuss your case and your options.