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What you can expect should you receive a Notice of Complaint

Complaint and Investigation Processes

A Case number is assigned and a folder generated. Investigator reviews complaint for completeness and whether TBPE has jurisdiction. Investigator notifies Complainant of receipt.

Investigator gathers information and interacts with appropriate parties to determine what the violation(s) is (are) and generates an internal memo with a summary of the complaint and recommended action, be it dismissal or possible sanctions against the individual, firm, or entity.

The case and recommendation is then reviewed independently by the Supervising Investigator (SI), the Director of Compliance & Enforcement (DC&E), the Deputy Executive Director (DED) and the Executive Director (ED). The Executive Director has final authority on how to proceed.

If the ED recommends dismissal, then a letter of notification is sent to the Complainant and 30 days are offered to allow Complainant to provide any additional information that might allow for re-review. If no additional information is provided in the 30 days, then letters of dismissal are sent to both the Complainant and the Respondent. If additional information is provided, the investigator reviews and provides recommendations and again distributes to the SI, DC&E, DED, and ED for re-review. Should you receive a Notice of Complaint from your board, early involvement by experienced legal representation is a crucial element to a successful outcome!

If the case is recommended for further action, then a letter is sent to the Respondent stating the existence of the complaint, source of the complaint, the potential violation(s), citing of the Law and/or Rules violated, and a request for a rebuttal of the complaint. Typically three weeks is allowed for a response.

Upon receipt of the rebuttal, the original investigator reviews the provided information; determines if the case should be recommended for dismissal or identify violations and propose sanctions.

The SI and the DC&E review the recommendation and if a sanction is recommended, the Director determines a potential administrative penalty with justification for DED and ED review. The ED has final authority of dismissal or sanction with recommended administrative penalty.

If recommended to be dismissed, then a letter of notification is sent to the Complainant and 30 days are offered to allow complainant to provide any additional information that might allow for re-review. If no additional information is provided in the 30 days, then letters of dismissal are sent to both the Complainant and the Respondent. If additional information is provided the investigator reviews and provides recommendations and again distributes to the SI, DC&E, DED, and ED for re-review.

If Respondent is asked to Cease and Desist, is sanctioned and/or reprimanded, then a letter of notification is made and a Consent Order is offered for signature.

For more complex, extended case investigations the Complainant will be notified at least quarterly of current status of the complaint.

If the Respondent signs and returns the Consent Order which is then reviewed and approved/denied by the Board at the next quarterly Board meeting.

If the Respondent refuses to sign the Consent Order, he must request an informal conference or it will be referred to the State Office of Administrative Hearings (SOAH) for a formal resolution. The Respondent would be scheduled for a meeting before the Informal Conference Committee, which is composed of one Board member, the Executive Director, and the Attorney General Representative acting as the Board’s legal counsel. The committee recommends either dismissal, a sanction in the form of an Agreed Board Order, or recommends the case be referred to SOAH.

If the Respondent signs and returns the Agreed Board Order which is then reviewed and approved/denied by the Board at the next quarterly Board meeting.

Respondent is notified of Board action and informed of sanction and/or administrative penalty and allowed an appropriate time to respond.

Complainant is notified by letter of final resolution of the case.

Texas Engineering Practice Act and Rules

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Austin, Texas Professional License Defense Attorney Oscar San Miguel represents clients who are located in Austin, Houston, Dallas, San Antonio, El Paso, Fort Worth, Arlington, Amarillo, Lubbock, Brownsville, Laredo, Harlingen, McAllen, Round Rock, Longview, Travis County, Harris County, Dallas County, Tarrant County, Bexar County, Fort Bend County, Montgomery County, Cameron County, Nueces County, El Paso County, Potter County, Lubbock County, Grayson County, Collin County and throughout Texas.
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