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Subdivision 1.Forms of disciplinary action.

When the board finds that an applicant or a licensed alcohol and drug counselor has violated a provision or provisions of sections 148C.01 to 148C.11, or rules promulgated under this chapter, the board may take one or more of the following actions:

(1) refuse to grant a license;

(2) revoke the license;

(3) suspend the license;

(4) impose limitations or conditions;

(5) impose a civil penalty not exceeding $10,000 for each separate violation, the amount of the civil penalty to be fixed so as to deprive the counselor of any economic advantage gained by reason of the violation charged or to reimburse the board for all costs of the investigation and proceeding; including, but not limited to, the amount paid by the board for services from the Office of Administrative Hearings, attorney fees, court reports, witnesses, reproduction of records, staff time, and expense incurred by staff of the department;

(6) order the counselor to provide uncompensated professional service under supervision at a designated public hospital, clinic, or other health care institution;

(7) censure or reprimand the counselor; or

(8) any other action justified by the case.

Subd. 2.Discovery; subpoenas.

In all matters relating to the board's investigation and enforcement activities related to alcohol and drug counselors, the board of behavioral health and therapy may issue subpoenas and compel the attendance of witnesses and the production of all necessary papers, books, records, documents, and other evidentiary materials. Any person failing or refusing to appear or testify regarding any matter about which the person may be lawfully questioned or failing to produce any papers, books, records, documents, or other evidentiary materials in the matter to be heard, after having been required by order of the board or by a subpoena of the board to do so may, upon application by the board to the district court in any district, be ordered to comply with the order or subpoena. The board may administer oaths to witnesses or take their affirmation. Depositions may be taken within or without the state in the manner provided by law for the taking of depositions in civil actions. A subpoena or other process or paper may be served upon a person it names anywhere within the state by any officer authorized to serve subpoenas or other process or paper in civil actions in the same manner as prescribed by law for service of process issued out of the district court of this state.

Subd. 3.Temporary suspension.

In addition to any other remedy provided by law, the board may, without a hearing, temporarily suspend the right of an alcohol and drug counselor to practice if the board finds that the counselor has violated a statute or rule that the board has authority to enforce and that continued practice by the practitioner would create a serious risk of harm to others. The suspension takes effect upon service of a written order on the practitioner specifying the statute or rule violated. The order remains in effect until the board issues a final order in the matter after a hearing or upon agreement between the board and the counselor. Service of the order is effective if the order is served on the counselor or the counselor's attorney either personally or by first class mail. Within ten days of service of the order, the board shall hold a hearing on the sole issue of whether there is a reasonable basis to continue, modify, or lift the suspension. Evidence presented by the board or counselor must be by affidavit only. The counselor or the counselor's attorney of record may appear for oral argument. Within five working days after the hearing, the board shall issue an order and, if the suspension is continued, schedule a contested case hearing within 45 days after issuance of the order. The administrative law judge shall issue a report within 30 days after closing of the contested case hearing record. The board shall issue a final order within 30 days after receipt of that report, the hearing record, and any exceptions to the report filed by the parties.

Subd. 4.Automatic suspension.

The right to practice is automatically suspended if (1) a guardian of an alcohol and drug counselor is appointed by order of a district court under sections 524.5-101 to 524.5-502, or (2) the counselor is committed by order of a district court under chapter 253B. The right to practice remains suspended until the counselor is restored to capacity by a court and, upon petition by the counselor, the suspension is terminated by the board after a hearing or upon agreement between the board and the counselor.

Official Publication of the State of Minnesota
Revisor of Statutes