section .1300 – board disciplinary procedures

 

21 NCAC 56 .1301             IMPROPER PRACTICE BY A LICENSEE

(a)  General.  Alleged practice that may violate the rules in this Chapter or G.S. 89C by a licensee is subject to Board investigation and disciplinary action by the Board.

(b)  Preferring Charges.  Any person who believes that any licensed Professional Engineer, Professional Land Surveyor or firm holding a certificate of authorization is in violation of the provisions of G.S. 89C or the rules in this Chapter may prefer charges against that person or firm by setting forth in writing those charges and swearing to their authenticity, along with providing corroborative evidence.  The charges shall be filed with the Board's office in Raleigh, North Carolina.

(c)  Preliminary Review:

(1)           Upon receipt of a properly filed charge, a case shall be opened.

(2)           A field investigation may be performed if determined necessary by the Executive Director.

(3)           If the Executive Director determines that the charges are corroborated by evidence, a written notice and explanation of the charge shall be forwarded to the person or firm against whom the charge is made and a response is requested of the person or firm so charged to show compliance with all lawful requirements for retention of the license.  Notice of the charge and of the alleged facts or alleged conduct shall be given personally or by certified mail, return receipt request.

(4)           After preliminary evidence has been obtained, the matter shall be referred to the Board's review committee which is made up of the following individuals:

(A)          one member of the Board who is licensed in the respective profession,

(B)          the legal counsel of the Board, and

(C)          the Executive Director of the Board or Assistant Executive Director if designated by the Executive Director.

(5)           Upon review of the available evidence, the review committee shall present to the Board a written recommendation that:

(A)          the charge be dismissed as unfounded or trivial;

(B)          when the charge is admitted as true, the Board accept the admission of guilt by the person charged and order that person not to commit in the future the specific act or acts admitted and also not to violate any of the provisions of the Board Rules or the statutes at any time in the future;

(C)          the charge, whether admitted or denied, be presented to the full Board for a hearing and determination by the Board on the merits of the charge in accordance with the substantive and procedural requirements of the provisions of Section .1400 of this Chapter and the provisions of G.S. 150B; or

(D)          whether the charge is admitted or denied, the Board give notice to the licensee of a contemplated action as set out in Rule .1403(b) of this Chapter.

(d)  Consultant.  A consultant to the review committee shall be designated by the Board Chair if a board member is a complainant, witness or respondent in a case.  The consultant shall be a licensed professional engineer or professional land surveyor, depending on the nature of the case, and selected from a list provided by the Executive Director of former Board members or other licensed professionals who are knowledgeable with the Board's processes.  The consultant shall review all case materials and make a recommendation for consideration by the review committee as to the merits of the case.  The consultant shall review any new information presented in the event of a settlement conference and make a recommendation to the settlement conference committee.

(e)  Board Decision.  Notice of the decision by the Board on recommendations of the review committee shall be given to the party against whom the charges have been brought and the party submitting the charge.  Though it is not forbidden to do so, the Board is not required to notify the parties of the reasons of the Board in making its determination.

(f)  Settlement Conference.  When the Board issues a citation for hearing or notice of a contemplated action, the licensee may request in writing a settlement conference to pursue resolution of the issue(s) through informal procedures.  If, after the completion of a settlement conference, the licensee and Board's settlement committee do not agree to a resolution of the dispute for the full Board's consideration, the original administrative proceeding shall commence.  During the course of the settlement conference, no sworn testimony shall be taken nor shall any witnesses be cross-examined.

(1)           The Board's settlement committee shall be made up of the following individuals:

(A)          the member of the Board who served on the review committee or the replacement if the member is not available,

(B)          one public member from the Board,

(C)          the legal counsel of the Board, and

(D)          the Executive Director of the  Board or Assistant Executive Director if designated by the Executive Director.

(2)           Upon review of the available evidence, the settlement committee shall present to the Board a written recommendation that:

(A)          the charge be dismissed as unfounded or trivial;

(B)          when the charge is admitted as true, the Board accept the admission of guilt by the person charged and order the person not to commit in the future the specific act or acts admitted and, also, not to violate any provisions of the Board Rules or the statutes at any time in the future;

(C)          the charge, whether admitted or denied, be presented to the full Board for a hearing and determination by the Board on the merits of the charge in accordance with the substantive and procedural requirements of the provisions of Section .1400 of this Chapter and the provisions of G.S. 150B; or

(D)          whether the charge is admitted or denied, the Board give notice to the licensee of a contemplated action as set out in Rule .1403(b) of this Chapter.

 

History Note:        Authority G.S. 89C‑10; 89C‑21; 89C‑22;

Eff. February 1, 1976;

Readopted Eff. September 29, 1977;

Amended Eff. August 1, 2011; July 1, 2009; May 1, 2009; August 1, 2000; August 1, 1998; March 1, 1996; April 1, 1989; December 1, 1984; January 1, 1982.