Monterey License Attorney


Speech-Language Pathology, Audiology, & Hearing Aid Dispensers

A professional license for speech-language pathologists, audiologists, and hearing aid dispensers allows them to operate legally. It shows you have the skills and qualifications to offer quality and reliable services to patients who require your help. However, many things put your license at risk, including complaints from colleagues, employers, patients, and patients’ family members. Complaints regarding service delivery can result in a lost professional license and livelihood. It is advisable to seek the help and support of a skilled license attorney when issues like those arise.

The licensing board for speech-language pathologists, audiologists, and hearing aid dispensers takes complaints against professionals very seriously. It can quickly take administrative action against you, including revoking or suspending your practicing license. An action against your license by the board will affect your practice, career, and future. However, a skilled attorney can develop a solid defense against your charges in Monterey to defend your permit and future. We use our best defense strategies at Monterey License Attorney to deliver a favorable outcome for your case.

Speech-Language Pathologists

Speech-language pathologists or speech therapists help people with impaired speaking abilities. Speech impairment can result from various medical conditions or disorders, including a traumatic head injury. Some children acquire hearing and speaking abilities effortlessly. Others do not develop that ability due to underlying conditions. Some children can hear and speak until a particular age when they lose those abilities after an illness or accident. Some adults are also affected in the same manner. Not being able to hear and talk is a significant challenge, especially if you are at an age where you need to communicate with your family, friends, and peers.

Speech therapists are trained to use simple and advanced strategies that could improve a person’s capacity to communicate. If a person’s communication ability is not completely impaired, they can receive the help and support they need to improve their skills and communicate better.

As a speech therapist, your work entails working with these people to help them with fluency, pronunciation, rhythm, and anything else they need to communicate more effectively. You could also help people quickly adjust to a regional or foreign accent. But you must have the skills and qualifications to do that.

Being a qualified speech therapist requires extensive training and experience, which takes time and a lot of money. It also takes a lot of effort to convince clients they can benefit from your service. Once you have a client, you must work hard to maintain or serve them well for referrals and positive reviews. Sadly, that does not always happen. You are constantly working to defend your career and license. It is difficult to imagine that a single complaint from a dissatisfied customer can cost you the career you have worked hard to establish.

The Role of Audiologists

Audiologists diagnose and recommend treatment for a wide range of hearing disorders. A person requires your services as an audiologist when they notice a problem in how they hear or are afraid they could lose their hearing ability entirely. Your work is to diagnose their exact hearing issue, recommend and offer treatment, and follow up to ensure your treatment works as it should. You could recommend hearing aids in some situations and assist patients in using those devices effectively.

Additionally, your work involves dealing with balance issues. Since hearing and body balance are closely related, a hearing condition can result in lost balance.

You need adequate training and experience to correctly diagnose and recommend treatment for your patients' hearing-related issues. Audiologists require extensive and expensive training and high qualifications to obtain a practicing license. Sadly, you are always at risk of losing your professional license due to complaints filed against you by your patients, patient’s family members, colleagues, and employers. A complaint puts your entire career at risk.

The Work of Hearing Aid Dispensers

People’s hearing is affected by several things, including accidents, chronic diseases, and old age. When people’s hearing is impacted, they need treatment and sometimes an assistive device to improve their hearing ability and communication.

Hearing dispensers ensure impaired people receive the proper devices to improve their hearing for easier living. Your roles include diagnosing a person's hearing issue and recommending the right hearing aid to restore or improve their hearing. That role requires you to be familiar with a wide range of hearing device options in the market today. That way, you can explain to your clients the features they must consider when buying a hearing aid.

But the work of a hearing aid dispenser is not always smooth. A simple mistake can result in client, family, and employer complaints. That puts your permit and the career that has taken you years to build at risk. It is necessary to understand the processes you can follow and the assistance you seek if someone accuses you.

The Role of Speech Therapy, Audiology, & Hearing Aid Dispenser Board

Speech therapists, audiologists, and hearing aid dispensers are professionals that require licenses to operate in California. The board is responsible for issuing practice licenses and conducting follow-ups to ensure that patients requiring these services are satisfied. The board protects patients from malpractice and substandard and unsafe services that could result in injuries. That is why it takes complaints against licensed professionals seriously.

Thus, it is safe to believe that the board will not be supportive when an accusation comes to its attention. The board will investigate the complaint and take immediate action (if needed) to protect patients from unsafe or poor-quality practices. For example, suppose someone reports that you are operating without a valid license. In that case, the board can order you to stop further practices until they complete the investigation and decide on your case.

However, professional boards have been accused of taking all complaints seriously and taking action without considering evidence. That is why you need legal assistance to protect your rights and license. A skilled attorney will investigate the matter, present mitigating factors to the board, and demand fair treatment. You will likely receive a proper resolution of your case from an attorney.

The board has a list of regulations that speech-language pathologists, audiologists, and hearing aid dispensers must adhere to. It also has disciplinary directives for licensed practitioners who violate the code of conduct. These guidelines are available online. If you break a code of conduct, the board will conduct a hearing to determine the circumstances and consequences of the violation. You will appear before an administrative law judge in that hearing. The judge hears the evidence against you and your defense to decide the matter.

Here are examples of violations that could result in disciplinary action against you by the board:

  • Alcohol and substance use, especially when done while on duty.
  • Insurance fraud and other fraudulent acts resulting in undeserved gain at the expense of another person or company.
  • Unprofessional conduct with patients, family, or colleagues.
  • Allowing other people to work for you without a permit in capacities that require training and a license.
  • Receiving or issuing patients for referred patients.
  • Asking for or receiving kickbacks for suggesting a particular service or hearing device.
  • Misleading or false advertising practices.
  • Ordinary negligence, gross negligence, incompetence when offering treatment or refusing to treat a client without a valid reason.
  • A prior criminal conviction related to your qualifications or services you render, which is likely to affect your service delivery.
  • If you are under investigation by a licensing board in a different state for professional misconduct.

Possible Disciplinary Action

The board has several forms of discipline for professional misconduct by speech-language pathologists, audiologists, and hearing aid dispensers. The most common of these are:

Citations and Fines

The board can issue a citation for you to appear before it to answer charges against you. The board can require you to pay a fine, depending on the details of your case. The problem is that citations are usually made publicly. The information could reach many people, including your current and potential patients. Also, fines can be costly.

A Public Reprimand

A public reprimand against your actions or omissions can follow a citation and fine. The reprimand is also publicly posted by the board, meaning it can reach everyone, including current and past clients. That can impact your ability to find a client in the future.

Revocation or Suspension of your License

The board will likely take more stern action against you in case of serious professional misconduct. That could include suspending your practicing license or revoking it for good. It means losing your livelihood temporarily or permanently.

When the board makes that decision, the revocation or suspension starts immediately. Thus, you are not allowed to finish serving your current clients. It means that if you ever practice again, you will start from the beginning by finding a new clientele, which is a significant challenge.

Being unable to earn a living from a career you have sacrificed so much for is also challenging. Remember how much time, money, and dedication you have invested in your profession. You can lose all that in minutes.

That is why you should seek the help of a license attorney immediately after you receive a citation from the board.

License Probation

The board can decide to place you on probation, especially if you are a first offender and your case is not severe. Your attorney can also negotiate for license probation instead of revocation or suspension. The advantage of probation is that you can continue your practice throughout the probation period. However, you will be under the close observation of the board. The board will also issue strict terms and conditions to adhere to throughout probation. It means you will not be working freely and enjoying some of the things you love, especially if they violate your probation.

The Administrative Process Following an Accusation Against Your Profession

Working as a speech-language pathologist, audiologist, or hearing aid dispenser is more complex than it seems. You are expected to carry yourself professionally, especially when handling clients, their families, and generally at work. Sadly, that does not always happen. Someone can quickly report you to your licensing board, subjecting you to a lengthy legal process that can result in revocation or suspension of your license.

When the board receives a complaint against an audiologist, speech-therapy pathologist, or hearing aid dispenser, it can dismiss the complaint or open an investigation. The details of the case guide the board’s decision. If the board dismisses the complaint, you have nothing to worry about. You can continue your practice as if nothing happened.

However, if the board starts investigating you, it can temporarily suspend your license until the outcome of the matter is known. Depending on the case's details, the board will take action after the investigation.

You can engage a competent license attorney from the start to understand your case's gravity and options. Your attorney will safeguard your rights and represent you in all the processes involved. An aggressive attorney can also fight hard for the most favorable outcome for your case.

A skilled attorney will conduct a separate investigation into the matter. They will collect evidence to support your case when the issue comes before a judge. The attorney will also review all the documents submitted by the board and any evidence the board has against you. The attorney aims to ensure that your interests are served in the end.

Find a competent License Attorney Near Me

Is your profession as a speech-language pathologist, hearing aid dispenser, or audiologist under investigation in Monterey?

It is advisable to seek a skilled license attorney's advice, support, and guidance. That way, you will not make mistakes like self-incrimination, which could worsen your situation. You will also know the right action for the best possible outcome.

At Monterey License Attorney, we have excellent skills and extensive experience defending professional licenses like yours. We understand the processes and the evidence needed to protect your license successfully. We aim to ensure you keep the career you have worked hard to build. Call us at 831-296-1191 to discuss your case details and options.

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