On November 20-22, 2013, the Ohio Board of Nursing met for its bi-monthly meeting. At that meeting, the Board voted to issue Notices of Opportunity for Hearing to over 80 nurses in Ohio. The Notices either proposed to take a disciplinary action against a nurse for an alleged violation or Automatically or Immediately suspended certain nurses’ licenses based on an alleged violation of the Board’s laws and rules. If you received a Notice of Opportunity for Hearing or a Notice of Suspension from the Nursing Board, there are important deadlines, which if missed, can have significant consequences.
First, whether the allegations in the Notice are true or not, in order to preserve your right to a hearing, you must request a hearing in writing. The Notice contains instructions on how to request a hearing. It is imperative that you request a hearing in writing within 30 days of the mailing of the Notice to you (not from the date you receive the Notice) If you do not request a hearing in writing within such period you will be prevented from providing any information or evidence on your behalf. In the request for the hearing, you simply need to state “I am writing to request a hearing.” It is also a good idea to follow-up with the Board via phone to ensure that they received your request for a hearing within the required time frame.
Then, you should consider hiring experienced legal counsel to defend you before the Board. The Nursing Board is represented by the Office of the Ohio Attorney General and also employs several in-house enforcement attorneys. In addition, all hearings are held before attorney hearing examiners. So, if you choose to represent yourself at a hearing, you may be the only non-attorney who participates in the hearing process. It’s your professional license at stake. It is important to find experienced counsel to assist in your defense. Check out earlier posts where I provide guidance on how to hire experienced legal counsel to assist you.
As always, if you have any questions about this post or about the Ohio Board of Nursing in general, please feel free to contact me at 614-486-3909 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.