NATIONALLY RECOGNIZED FEDERAL LAWYERS
Last Updated on: 13th September 2023, 06:32 pm
Helping Chiropractors Navigate Board Complaints
Chiropractors provide important healthcare services like spinal manipulation and other manual therapies to help patients manage pain and improve mobility. To legally practice, chiropractors must meet educational requirements, pass exams, and get a license from their state board.Most chiropractors practice ethically and follow the rules. But sometimes complaints and discipline can happen. If a chiropractor faces allegations of misconduct or care standard violations, their reputation, job, and license may be at risk.If you’re a chiropractor with a complaint against your license, it’s critical to get a lawyer experienced in defending chiropractors. Navigating the complaint process is complicated. A lawyer who knows the chiropractic rules can protect you through the case.This article looks at key things to know for chiropractors facing board complaints. It aims to help chiropractors understand their rights when their license is questioned.
Common Reasons for Chiropractic Complaints
There are many reasons a state chiropractic board may investigate or discipline a chiropractor. Some common reasons include:
- Care standard violations – Not meeting standards for exams, diagnosis, treatment, records, or consent. This is very common.
- Outside scope – Doing services beyond what chiropractors are allowed to do.
- Bad relationships – Having inappropriate relationships with patients.
- Insurance fraud – Billing for unnecessary or fake services.
- Substance abuse – Practicing while drunk or high.
- Criminal charges – Things like DUIs, assault, fraud.
- Misleading marketing – Making unsupported claims about treatments.
- Unprofessional behavior – Rudeness, offensive remarks, confidentiality breaches.
- Past discipline – Getting in trouble with the board before.
- Patient complaints – Patients reporting misconduct or harm.
- Malpractice lawsuits – Pending or resolved lawsuits.
- Breaking rules – Violating practice act or board rules.
Any misconduct report will be reviewed. If it seems valid, an investigation starts.
How Chiropractic Boards Investigate Complaints
When a board gets a complaint, they first evaluate if it’s something they handle and has enough details to act on. If so, a formal investigation begins.The investigation may involve:
- Written notice of the complaint
- The chiropractor responds in writing
- Interviews with the chiropractor, complainant, witnesses
- Requests for patient records, billing records, etc.
- An assessment of the chiropractor’s practice
- Patient record reviews by expert consultants
- Subpoenas for records or testimony
The chiropractor can have a lawyer during the investigation. This helps with responding, providing records, and protecting their interests.After investigating, the board decides if discipline is needed. Minor first offenses may just get a warning or reprimand. More serious or repeat issues can bring harsher punishment.
Potential Board Discipline Against a License
If the investigation finds wrongdoing, some possible sanctions include:
- License revocation – Permanent loss of license
- License suspension – Temporary loss of license
- Probation – Can practice with restrictions and oversight
- Practice limits – Limits on services allowed to provide
- Supervision – Oversight by an approved chiropractor
- Continuing education – Required extra training
- Fines – Civil money penalties
- Reprimand – Formal censure of conduct
- Warning letter – Written notice of rule violation
Things like suspension, revocation, or practice limits can really hurt a chiropractor’s livelihood.That’s why getting a lawyer early on is so important. They can often resolve minor issues before they get worse. They can also negotiate lesser punishments for serious violations.
How Defense Lawyers Can Help
Dealing with a board investigation and potential discipline is scary and stressful. Chiropractors shouldn’t face it alone. A lawyer experienced with chiropractic rules and defense strategies can provide valuable guidance. They can help with:
- Responding to the complaint
- Preparing for interviews
- Gathering evidence to fight the charges
- Negotiating settlements to avoid hearings
- Navigating hearings if needed
- Raising defenses and legal arguments
Having an advocate in your corner can make all the difference. Don’t hesitate to consult an attorney if your license is at risk.