If you are a nurse who has recently found yourself at the center of a California Board of Registered Nursing complaint, you may be worried about what you need to do to protect your license.
Below, you’ll learn about the best ways to handle the complaint and improve the chances that your license will remain in good standing.
Examine Your Insurance
Some nurses have malpractice insurance that covers board complaints, but just because you have malpractice insurance, it doesn’t mean that complaints will necessarily be covered. Insurance that protects you against complaints usually has to be purchased separately, so you should always double-check to make sure that it’s part of your policy.
If you don’t have this type of insurance, consider investing in it. Although malpractice insurance costs money, the money you will spend protecting yourself pales in comparison to the cost of undergoing a malpractice suit without it.
Contact a Lawyer
Whether you have insurance or not, your next step is to contact a lawyer: in particular a California nurse license defense attorney. By working with someone who is familiar with complaints and investigations, you will strengthen your case and have the best chance of having your complaint dismissed without a hearing. If you don’t ask for help because you’re embarrassed about your complaint, you may be putting your case at risk. It’s always better to work with a professional, even if you are ashamed to reveal the circumstances of the complaint.
Act Immediately and Seriously
Formal complaints from the nursing board are serious matters, but it’s easy to ignore the complaint or becoming outraged and act unprofessionally. One of the worst mistakes you can make during a complaint is to assume that the licensing board will agree with your perspective on the issue.
The board is in place to protect patients, so they will not necessarily be on your side during a complaint. Rather than blowing off the complaint, always take it seriously. Adhere to all deadlines, prepare appropriate responses and support them with relevant information, obtain proper legal advice, and be proactive throughout the process.
Avoid Discussing Your Complaint
While you may be upset about the board’s complaint against you, you should avoid speaking with anyone involved in the complaint on your own. This includes the board, witnesses, the complainant, or any other third parties.
Instead, speak exclusively with your attorney for advice. If anyone asks you to discuss the matter, only do so with your attorney present since any statements you make without a lawyer present can damage your defense. Most importantly, do not speak to the complainant or try to get them to dismiss the charge. Unless your attorney recommends this course of action, it can be incredibly damaging to your case.
Although a nursing board complaint can cause substantial anxiety as you try to defend your reputation and license, working with an experienced lawyer can help you understand what is happening throughout the complaint process and make it easier to endure.
If you can follow the steps above even during a stressful complaint, it will improve your chances of keeping your license intact. For help from a lawyer with experience in nursing complaints, contact California license defense attorney Scott Harris. Click to schedule a free, 30-minute consultation or call us at 323-794-0701 or at 877-865-6218.
This blog is meant to be informational. It is not meant to be all-encompassing legal advice. If you are facing a situation involving your professional license, seek counsel from a licensed attorney.