Long Island Nurse License Defense Lawyers
Long Island nurse license defense attorneys at our firm represent RN’s and LPN’s in investigations, disciplinary actions, and all other forms of legal and ethical issues in the state of New York. If you are a nurse in Long Island, our nursing license defense lawyers can help you.
Nurses work hard, and invest in their education in order to get a license to practice. Nurses carry the heaviest work load in the health care industry, and are frequently accused of misconduct. If you face a potential disciplinary issue, our Long Island Nurse license defense attorneys can help you. If a disciplinary action is taken against your nursing license, it could derail your career permanently. Even if you suffer from a temporary license suspension, it may result in you losing your job – and future difficulties in finding employment. If you are a nurse being investigated by the Office of Professional Discipline (OPD), then you should contact our Long Island nurse license defense lawyers immediately.
Why can nurses face investigation
Nurses can face investigation for misconduct based on many things. In fact, in New York, the law outlines the acts which are considered professional misconduct, totaling close to forty categories. Being found guilty of any of these acts will lead to professional discipline. We have defended hundreds of nurses around the state and most of the New York OPD cases fall into the following categories: failing to maintain medical records, controlled substance diversion, failing to adhere to standard of care, or abusing drugs/alcohol. Another common trigger of an OPD investigation is being convicted of a crime. Additionally, any conduct by the nurse that impairs his/her ability to perform their duties can be cause of facing investigations.
What to do when you find out you are being investigated
If you are a nurse and you learn of the fact you’re being investigated, then it’s important you speak to an attorney before you speak to your employers, or investigators. It is common for investigators, and employers, to overreact, and assume you are guilty. If you say something inaccurate, it can be used against you.
Many OPD nursing cases begin by a report generated by employers. After representing numerous nurses who worked in hospital environment, we can say that unfortunately a large percentage of the reported misconduct cases are reported out of spite – to settle personal scores and vendettas, not because there is actual misconduct. We have seen countless cases where hard-working and diligent nurses were essentially made ‘scapegoats” by their employers and accused of violating non-existing policies and protocols – all in the name of complying with their legal counselor’s directives to avoid potential liability. Whatever the case might be, working as a nurse in a hospital floor is very stressful and can subject you to unwarranted accusations.
If you are suspended and/or called in for meeting with your supervisors and Human Resources managers, be very careful. Speak to us before making any statements or signing any documents. Your statements will be used as basis for a disciplinary report which your employer will send over to the OPD after they terminate your employment. Unlike common practice, we strongly recommend seeking legal advice from licensed and experienced attorneys and not union representatives who accompany nurses to these interviews. You are dealing with serious legal issues which have serious legal consequences and you need the help of an attorney.
On-going investigations can drastically change, and become a bigger problem if new information is discovered that gives rise to suspicion of other misconduct conducted by you. Some in-house disciplinary investigations may end without serious consequences but most result in a disciplinary report to the OPD and some even end up in criminal charges.
Most state disciplinary investigations of New York nurses begin with an interview letter request from the Office of Professional Discipline. You are likely to receive a letter informing you that you are under investigation and providing further instructions. As a licensee, you are required to cooperate with the investigation – so it’s important you follow the instructions. However, most nurses don’t realize that they have the right not to speak with the OPD investigator and if they do, they have the right to an attorney. In most cases, speaking with the investigator is like speaking with police – anything you tell them will be used against you. It is therefore extremely important to seek legal counsel as soon as you receive the letter. Our attorneys will prevent you from making statements which could jeopardize your the outcome of your case.
Many of the OPD cases we handle result in dismissal. However, the result of your matter greatly depends on the circumstances of your case, the quality of the evidence against you, and other factors. While we can’t guarantee any particular outcome, out solid track record of successful representation of New York nurses speaks for itself and we do guarantee that we will do anything within our power to protect your rights and interests.
If you a Long Island or NYC nurse under investigation by the OPD, call our office today to set up an immediate consultation with an experienced OPD defense lawyer.