Mental Health Professional License Defense Attorney in Georgia
Mental health professionals train for many years to earn a license and work hard to build a practice.
For allegations of substance abuse, professional misconduct or other inappropriate behaviors to immediately put all that in jeopardy is a harsh reality for many professionals.
Whether a criminal matter or an alleged administrative violation, you can be sure that the licensing board will investigate the complaint, putting your career and livelihood at risk. The mental health board has the power to suspend or revoke professional licenses, and this can end up ruining careers.
False allegations or genuine mistakes interpreted as something else should not go unchallenged, as the stakes are too high.
To protect your license and your reputation, contact The Law Office of Adam D. Brown, an experienced mental health professional license attorney in Gwinnett County.
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Mental health professional licenses in Georgia
Mental health professional licenses are necessary for the following professionals in Georgia:
- Licensed professional counselors (LPCs)
- Licensed clinical social workers (LCSWs)
- Marriage and family therapists (MFTs)
Professionals may be working in private mental health practice, at a correctional mental health provider or in a behavioral health facility.
Complaints of misconduct or malpractice are serious and you may require legal assistance to avoid harsh consequences for your career.
How can mental health professionals lose their license in Gwinnett County?
Any complaint against a mental health professional in Georgia will be investigated because of the vulnerable nature of patients receiving help from such professionals.
The vast majority of those working within the mental health system in Georgia are regulated by: (A) the Georgia Composite Board of Professional Counselors, Social Workers and Marriage & Family Therapists; (B) the Georgia Board of Psychology; (C) the Georgia Composite Medical Board; or (D) the Georgia Board of Nursing. For the purpose of this article, all of the regulatory Boards will just be called “the Board.”
The Board investigates all complaints against mental health professionals, made by patients, hospitals or state agencies.
Typically, complaints are for misconduct or malpractice and usually include allegations of:
Part of the duty of any psychiatrist, psychologist, counsellor, therapist or social worker is to provide the best possible care to vulnerable patients.
If a complaint is made, the Board will investigate but, in most cases, you can continue working pending the results of the investigation.
If the investigation finds sufficient grounds for the suspension or revocation of your professional license, the Board may take this action. However, you can defend your actions and respond to the complaint prior to any hearing, or you can defend yourself at a due process hearing before the Office of State Administrative Hearings, where the Board will be represented by an Assistant Attorney General.
If you are under investigation or accused of violating your professional practice act,, an experienced mental health professional license defense attorney can help you handle the process.
The possible outcomes of a Board investigation in Georgia
Not all investigations lead to license suspension or revocation.
If the Board investigates and finds a mental health professional culpable, there are several courses of action available, depending on the circumstances of the complaint and the severity of the violation.
From least to most severe, the penalties imposed can be:
- A private letter of concern or invesstigatory letter, both of which are non-disciplinary in nature
- A fine
- A period of probation, with possible conditions and/or restrictions
- License suspension
- License revocation
The outcome of any investigation has the potential to appear as part of the public record, so any disciplinary action taken against you will follow you throughout your professional career. If there is a chance of mitigating the Board’s fears, it is in your best interest to try and obtain the lowest possible action possible, including dismissal or a private letter of concern.
The potential impact on a career can be devastating. Having an experienced Georgia mental health license defense attorney on your side in the circumstances is a great help to many.
How can an experienced mental health medical license defense attorney help?
Board investigations and hearings can be intimidating. For many mental health professionals, it is the first time they have ever had to face such a situation. It can become stressful.
You have an opportunity to defend yourself at the hearing but many attorneys do not have the necessary license defense experience or trial experience to handle such cases.
With the potentially career-threatening nature of Board decisions, retaining an attorney with the necessary experience to defend you is key.
Let us handle your mental health professional license defense case
Adam D. Brown spent several years in the medical profession as a critical care registered nurse before law school. He is experienced in how the various professional licensing boards in Georgia view and approach disciplinary action against medical professionals.
You always have a chance of clearing your name. As your medical license defense attorney, Adam D. Brown will examine the evidence against you and prepare the best defense possible.
If you have received a call, email, or letter from your licensing Board, call us for a free and confidential case evaluation: (404) 883-8893.