What to Do if Your Illinois Professional License has a Complaint Filed Against It

Schaumburg Criminal Defense Lawyers

As a doctor, osteopath, chiropractor, or other healthcare professional working in Illinois, you need to be licensed by the Illinois Department of Financial & Professional Regulation (IDFPR). This department licenses professionals to work in Illinois and, if necessary, revokes the licenses of professionals who are found guilty of medical malpractice or criminal charges.

If you are a licensed professional, you can risk losing your professional license if you are involved in a lawsuit and found to be at fault. If you are notified that you are under investigation by the IDFPR, contact an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible to discuss your legal options. The prospect of losing your professional license can be panic-inducing, but you need to remain collected through the investigation process and work with your attorney to dispute the complaint. A complaint is not a suspension. It is merely the beginning of an investigation that could potentially result in a license suspension. While the investigation is going on, you may still practice in your field and continue to work with clients.

The Investigation Process

If a complaint is filed against your professional license with the IDFPR, the department assigns your case to an investigator who then reviews your professional license and the complaint to determine if any violations of licensing law have occurred. If the investigator finds a violation, he or she then forwards it to a prosecutor, who handles the case in court.

If the prosecutor cannot find sufficient evidence for the alleged violation, the case is closed. If he or she does find evidence to support the allegation, he or she forwards the case to the Illinois Attorney General or county State's Attorney for further investigation. If a disciplinary hearing is deemed to be necessary, a formal complaint is written and presented to the defendant's professional board and the Division Hearing Officer. At this hearing, the governing bodies determine an appropriate disciplinary action for the defendant. This may include revoking or suspending his or her professional license, reprimanding the defendant, censuring him or her, putting him or her on professional probation, or terminating the license. The defendant may also face a fine.

If a defendant is found to be guilty of the charges in the complaint, he or she may appeal the ruling in circuit court within 35 days.

If You are Under Investigation

If you are under investigation by the IDFPR, there are certain things you need to do and others that you should avoid at all costs. Some of the behaviors and reactions you should absolutely avoid include the following:

  • Do not ignore the investigation. Whether you acknowledge it or not, the investigation is happening and you need to be taking the steps to defend your license against the complaint while the investigation is underway.
  • Do not meet with a department investigator without legal representation. Your attorney knows how to handle certain questions and if he or she is not present to guide you during an investigator meeting, you could inadvertently incriminate yourself during questioning. Following this, do not agree to speak on the phone or otherwise contact the investigator without your attorney present.
  • Do not contact the individual who filed the complaint and do not, under any circumstances, attempt to convince him or her to withdraw the complaint. Doing so will only reflect poorly on you.
  • Do not alter your professional records in an attempt to disguise the event or events that lead to the complaint.
  • Do not attempt to bribe the investigator or any other member of the board into ending the investigation or otherwise ruling in your favor.

Do take the following into consideration and ask your attorney for clarification for anything you do not understand.

  • Cooperate with the investigator. Although you should not speak to him or her at length without your attorney present, do not lash out against him or her or treat the investigator with hostility.
  • Begin working with an attorney right away. You need to be proactive regarding the investigation and seek legal representation as soon as you can after being notified of the complaint.
  • Stay on top of all your deadlines and your case's progress. If you are unsure about anything regarding your case, talk to your attorney about it.

Cook County Criminal Defense Attorneys

In addition to his expansive criminal defense background, Schaumburg criminal defense lawyer Thomas T. Glasgow has extensive experience handling legal matters pertaining to professional licenses in the state of Illinois. Glasgow served as the Chief of the Medical Division of the Illinois Department of Professional Regulation from 1998-1999. While working for the department he also taught numerous continuing education seminars for professionals across the state.

If you are accused of any type of malpractice or criminal activity, you need to begin building a strong defense with a qualified Schaumburg criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Contact Glasgow & Olsson today at (847) 577-8700 to schedule your free initial legal consultation with our firm.