26 Aug 23

California Department of Consumer Affairs Lawyers

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Last Updated on: 26th August 2023, 01:22 am

Information about California Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) Division of Investigation

The California Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) is a consumer protection organization that licenses and oversees over 3.5 million licenses across 280 different categories. Almost every California professional licensing agency operates under the auspices of DCA. From the Board of Registered Nursing and the Medical Board of California to the Board of Accountancy and the Board of Pharmacy, the DCA has control over 40 professional and occupational licensing boards.

The Division of Investigation’s Background

The Department of Consumer Affairs’ Division of Investigation (DOI) is a police department that provides law enforcement investigation services to DCA licensing boards. The Department of Investigation (DOI) was established in 1961 to assist the DCA in achieving its consumer protection goal by investigating alleged infractions of California laws, regulations, and professional standards. When licensing boards receive complaints or accusations of alleged misbehavior, they frequently submit them to the Department of Investigation (DOI) for investigation.

DOI investigators are sworn peace officers with the authority to make arrests and carry out warrants under BPC § 159.5, BPC § 160, and 830.3(a) PC. Former law enforcement detectives, computer forensics experts, internal affairs investigators, sex crime investigators, and medical investigators are among DOI’s experienced investigative professionals. They usually have years of interrogation, sting operations, and investigation experience.

Professional licensing fees and investigation cost reimbursements from disciplined licensees are used to pay the Division of Investigation. The DOI consists of two units as of July 1, 2014: the Investigation and Enforcement Unit (IEU) and the Health Quality Investigation Unit (HQIU). Both groups provide specialized investigative services to the DCA’s various boards, bureaus, and committees.

About The DCA Investigation and Enforcement Unit

The DCA Division of Investigation, Investigation and Enforcement Unit (IEU) is the department’s main unit, in charge of the majority of DCA investigations. For most DCA agencies, the IEU investigates allegations of malfeasance and complaints (except for certain medical licensees handled by HQIU). Investigators from the IEU employ a variety of investigation and intelligence gathering techniques, including:

  • Witness and suspect interviews
  • Conducting sting operations and undercover investigations
  • Subpoenaing relevant documents and executing search warrants
  • Conducting computer forensics investigation
  • Partnering with law enforcement agencies

The DCA Investigation and Enforcement Unit maintains field offices in Chatsworth, Fresno, Hayward, Lakewood, Ontario, Sacramento, and San Diego, as well as other locations around California. Some licensing authorities, such as the Board of Registered Nursing, include internal investigators and complaint resolution analysts who address less serious license suspension issues. These employees are usually not sworn peace officers. When conversing with investigators, it’s crucial to figure out who they work for and whether or not they’re sworn peace officers.

The DCA’s Health Quality Investigation Unit

The Medical Board of California, the Osteopathic Medical Board of California, the Physician Assistant Board, the Podiatric Medical Board of California, and the California Board of Psychology all have investigations handled by the DCA Division of Investigation, Health Quality Investigation Unit (HQIU). On July 1, 2014, the HQIU was established within the Division of Investigation. The Medical Board of California used investigators who were directly employed by the board prior to that date.

The HQIU investigates wrongdoing by physicians and other health-care licensees. From Sacramento to San Diego, HQIU has a total of 12 field offices. Investigators from the HQIU collaborate with Deputy Attorney Generals from the Department of Justice’s Health Quality Enforcement Section (HQE) to investigate and prosecute physician violations of the Medical Practice Act and other regulations.

It is critical to protect yourself if you have been contacted by an investigator or your board. Discipline, license revocation, and even criminal charges may result from investigations. Spodek Law Group can assist you in safeguarding your license and career at every stage, including assisting you in obtaining the best possible outcome from investigations.