Most California licensees that do not fall within the healthcare professions
or the financial professions are occupational licenses. An occupational
license may be obtained by simply completing a license application, without
a specialized degree, training or passing a test. Examples of occupational
licenses include automobile salesperson, automotive dealer, automotive
repair dealer, residential care facility for the elderly, family day care,
automobile reposessor or furniture dealer.
Most issues in the occupations arise from criminal convictions in the backgrounds
of applicants, new convictions suffered by licensees, or failed inspections
by regulators. We have extensive experience defending all types of regulatory
actions against occupational license applications and license holders.
Federal Licensing Law
Federal licensing agencies may file a denial or an accusation against someone
holding a federal license or privilege. Federal agency sanctions can include
a bar, suspension, or an exclusion. Federal license law hearings are governed
by the Federal Administrative Procedure Act. The federal government has
staff attorneys that prosecute these cases and federal ALJs that try cases
in Washington D.C. and in local venues around the country.
Federal licensing cases that we have handled include the Drug Enforcement
Administration (DEA), the Department of Defense (DOD), the Internal Revenue
Service Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR), and the Office of
Inspector General (OIG). Federal cases usually follow formal rules of
procedure, so the involvement of an attorney is essential. Federal agencies
also carry out investigations, often in writing, but sometimes by investigative
interview or deposition.
Certification Boards and Private Associations
Our firm also represents professionals before certification bodies and
industry groups, and members and officers before their private associations.
A certification board may suspend a certification or place it on probation.
There may be the opportunity to appear in writing or in person at a hearing
before a certification board or its special committee. Sometimes a party
or their attorney may appear by telephone.
Private associations typically have bylaws that provide parties subject
to discipline, fines, suspension, expulsion or exclusion with the right
to due process, such as an informal hearing, formal hearing, or the ability
to submit evidence and argument in writing. Private association cases
often involve ethics violations and may be decided by an ethics committee.
We have experience in navigating the investigation and hearing processes
for numerous certifying boards and private associations.