When the Board receives a complaint concerning a licensee, the Board’s Executive Director will notify the licensee of the nature of the complaint. The licensee must respond to the complaint, in writing, within twenty days of notification.
In drafting a response to an inquiry regarding a complaint, it is important for you to include all information and documentation necessary to respond to the allegations fairly and fully. However, it is equally important for you to include only the pertinent information and documentation. We help our clients make these judgments and determinations from an objective standpoint and with knowledge of and experience with the process in defending matters before the Veterinary Medical Board. A copy of the licensee’s written response is then forwarded to the complainant. The complainant is then given twenty days from receipt of the letter to reply.
The matter is then referred to the Committee on Investigations. The Committee consists of three members of the Board. The Committee will investigate the complaint and may:
- Assign the complaint to an investigator who will submit a written report to the Committee;
- Invite the complainant and licensee to attend a meeting with the Committee to take their oral statements, but neither party will be compelled to attend; or
- Conduct any other type of investigation it deems appropriate.
Upon completion of the investigation, the Committee will determine whether there is probable cause to believe that the licensee has violated any standard of misconduct that would justify a disciplinary hearing.
If probable cause is found but it is determined that a disciplinary hearing is not warranted, the Committee may issue a reprimand to the licensee and notice will be mailed to the licensee. Within 15 days of receipt of the reprimand, the licensee may refuse the reprimand and request that a Notice of Hearing be issued. If the letter of reprimand is accepted, a record of the reprimand will be maintained at the office of the Board.
If no probable cause is found, the Committee will dismiss the charges and prepare a statement of the reasons which will be mailed to the licensee and the complainant.
If no probable cause is found but it is determined by the Committee that the conduct of the licensee is not in accordance with accepted professional practice or may be the subject of discipline if continued or repeated, the Committee will issue a letter of caution to the licensee stating that the conduct is not professionally acceptable or may be the basis for a disciplinary hearing if repeated. A record of the letter of caution will be maintained at the office of the Board.