Being subject to an investigation by the Board of Registered Nursing (BRN) or another one of California’s nursing regulatory bodies is serious business. After all, it could result in the loss of your ability to practice nursing. If you are currently under — or suspect that you might be under — BRN investigation, you need to prepare.
This post will explain how to prepare for a BRN investigation so you can start preparing a plan of action as soon as possible. If you have any questions related to fielding inquiries or mounting a defense, you may benefit from a consultation with a qualified nursing defense lawyer.
Notice of Investigation
The first thing you will need to prepare for is a Notice of Investigation from the BRN. This notice will explain that there are allegations of wrongdoing and that you are under BRN investigation. The letter will include a Business Professions Code number, and you will be asked to submit a written response by a specific date.
Many nurses have prepared for this moment by consulting a qualified nursing license defense lawyer. Ideally, this lawyer will have knowledge of all stages of the investigative process and will understand how to respond to the initial notice in a manner that maintains respect for the board and advocates for your best interests.
Department of Justice Investigator
After the initial notice is sent, the BRN will hire a Department of Justice (DOJ) investigator to scrutinize the matter. These investigators usually have a background in law enforcement and commonly possess a thorough knowledge of interrogation tactics and techniques.
Speaking to a DOJ investigator can cause all sorts of problems. This is another reason it could be beneficial to use the services of a qualified nursing license defense attorney — they will be able to respond to the investigator on your behalf.
Service of a Formal Accusation
If the process continues past the investigation stage, you will be served with a formal accusation that is publicly accessible on the BRN’s official website. During this stage, it is extremely important to have proper representation.
A qualified nursing license defense attorney will have a working knowledge of proper procedure and protocol so you can approach the BRN with confidence and sincerity.
The accusation process is divided into three steps: a statement to the respondent, the accusation itself, and a Notice of Defense.
The statement outlines what you need to do and will let you know if a stipulated settlement is being offered. The next step, the accusation, constitutes the charge against you.
Finally, the Notice of Defense is a document you send to the BRN. Critically, you have only 15 days from the date the notice was provided to inform the BRN that you intend to defend yourself against the accusations. If you do not submit a Notice of Defense within the allotted time frame, the BRN can move to discipline you without your input.
Need Representation? Contact S J Harris Law
If you need to retain the services of a qualified nursing license defense lawyer to defend against an impending BRN investigation, S J Harris Law can help. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation.