(1) The following acts shall constitute grounds for which the disciplinary actions specified in subsection (2) may be taken:
(a) Making misleading, deceptive, or fraudulent representations in or related to the practice of the licensee‘s profession.
Terms Used In Florida Statutes 455.227
- Board: means any board or commission, or other statutorily created entity to the extent such entity is authorized to exercise regulatory or rulemaking functions, within the department, including the Florida Real Estate Commission; except that, for ss. See Florida Statutes 455.01
- Complaint: A written statement by the plaintiff stating the wrongs allegedly committed by the defendant.
- Contract: A legal written agreement that becomes binding when signed.
- Conviction: A judgement of guilt against a criminal defendant.
- Department: means the Department of Business and Professional Regulation. See Florida Statutes 455.01
- Injunction: An order of the court prohibiting (or compelling) the performance of a specific act to prevent irreparable damage or injury.
- Jurisdiction: (1) The legal authority of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction exists when two courts have simultaneous responsibility for the same case. (2) The geographic area over which the court has authority to decide cases.
- License: means any permit, registration, certificate, or license issued by the department. See Florida Statutes 455.01
- Licensee: means any person issued a permit, registration, certificate, or license by the department. See Florida Statutes 455.01
- Nolo contendere: No contest-has the same effect as a plea of guilty, as far as the criminal sentence is concerned, but may not be considered as an admission of guilt for any other purpose.
- Obligation: An order placed, contract awarded, service received, or similar transaction during a given period that will require payments during the same or a future period.
- person: includes individuals, children, firms, associations, joint adventures, partnerships, estates, trusts, business trusts, syndicates, fiduciaries, corporations, and all other groups or combinations. See Florida Statutes 1.01
- Plea: In a criminal case, the defendant's statement pleading "guilty" or "not guilty" in answer to the charges, a declaration made in open court.
- Probation: A sentencing alternative to imprisonment in which the court releases convicted defendants under supervision as long as certain conditions are observed.
- Profession: means any activity, occupation, profession, or vocation regulated by the department in the Divisions of Certified Public Accounting, Professions, Real Estate, and Regulation. See Florida Statutes 455.01
- Settlement: Parties to a lawsuit resolve their difference without having a trial. Settlements often involve the payment of compensation by one party in satisfaction of the other party's claims.
- Statute: A law passed by a legislature.
- Subpoena: A command to a witness to appear and give testimony.
- Writ: A formal written command, issued from the court, requiring the performance of a specific act.
- writing: includes handwriting, printing, typewriting, and all other methods and means of forming letters and characters upon paper, stone, wood, or other materials. See Florida Statutes 1.01
(b) Intentionally violating any rule adopted by the board or the department, as appropriate.
(c) Being convicted or found guilty of, or entering a plea of guilty or nolo contendere to, regardless of adjudication, a crime in any jurisdiction which relates to the practice of, or the ability to practice, a licensee’s profession.
(d) Using a Class III or a Class IV laser device or product, as defined by federal regulations, without having complied with the rules adopted pursuant to s. 501.122(2) governing the registration of such devices.
(e) Failing to comply with the educational course requirements for human immunodeficiency virus and acquired immune deficiency syndrome.
(f) Having a license or the authority to practice the regulated profession revoked, suspended, or otherwise acted against, including the denial of licensure, by the licensing authority of any jurisdiction, including its agencies or subdivisions, for a violation that would constitute a violation under Florida law. The licensing authority’s acceptance of a relinquishment of licensure, stipulation, consent order, or other settlement, offered in response to or in anticipation of the filing of charges against the license, shall be construed as action against the license.
(g) Having been found liable in a civil proceeding for knowingly filing a false report or complaint with the department against another licensee.
(h) Attempting to obtain, obtaining, or renewing a license to practice a profession by bribery, by fraudulent misrepresentation, or through an error of the department or the board.
(i) Failing to report to the department any person who the licensee knows is in violation of this chapter, the chapter regulating the alleged violator, or the rules of the department or the board.
(j) Aiding, assisting, procuring, employing, or advising any unlicensed person or entity to practice a profession contrary to this chapter, the chapter regulating the profession, or the rules of the department or the board.
(k) Failing to perform any statutory or legal obligation placed upon a licensee.
(l) Making or filing a report which the licensee knows to be false, intentionally or negligently failing to file a report or record required by state or federal law, or willfully impeding or obstructing another person to do so. Such reports or records shall include only those that are signed in the capacity of a licensee.
(m) Making deceptive, untrue, or fraudulent representations in or related to the practice of a profession or employing a trick or scheme in or related to the practice of a profession.
(n) Exercising influence on the patient or client for the purpose of financial gain of the licensee or a third party.
(o) Practicing or offering to practice beyond the scope permitted by law or accepting and performing professional responsibilities the licensee knows, or has reason to know, the licensee is not competent to perform.
(p) Delegating or contracting for the performance of professional responsibilities by a person when the licensee delegating or contracting for performance of such responsibilities knows, or has reason to know, such person is not qualified by training, experience, and authorization when required to perform them.
(q) Violating any provision of this chapter, the applicable professional practice act, a rule of the department or the board, or a lawful order of the department or the board, or failing to comply with a lawfully issued subpoena of the department.
(r) Improperly interfering with an investigation or inspection authorized by statute, or with any disciplinary proceeding.
(s) Failing to comply with the educational course requirements for domestic violence.
(t) Failing to report in writing to the board or, if there is no board, to the department within 30 days after the licensee is convicted or found guilty of, or entered a plea of nolo contendere or guilty to, regardless of adjudication, a crime in any jurisdiction. A licensee must report a conviction, finding of guilt, plea, or adjudication entered before the effective date of this paragraph within 30 days after the effective date of this paragraph.
(u) Termination from an impaired practitioner program as described in s. 456.076 for failure to comply, without good cause, with the terms of the monitoring or participant contract entered into by the licensee or failing to successfully complete a drug or alcohol treatment program.
(2) When the board, or the department when there is no board, finds any person guilty of the grounds set forth in subsection (1) or of any grounds set forth in the applicable practice act, including conduct constituting a substantial violation of subsection (1) or a violation of the applicable practice act which occurred prior to obtaining a license, it may enter an order imposing one or more of the following penalties:
(a) Refusal to certify, or to certify with restrictions, an application for a license.
(b) Suspension or permanent revocation of a license.
(c) Restriction of practice.
(d) Imposition of an administrative fine not to exceed $5,000 for each count or separate offense.
(e) Issuance of a reprimand.
(f) Placement of the licensee on probation for a period of time and subject to such conditions as the board, or the department when there is no board, may specify. Those conditions may include, but are not limited to, requiring the licensee to undergo treatment, attend continuing education courses, submit to be reexamined, work under the supervision of another licensee, or satisfy any terms which are reasonably tailored to the violations found.
(g) Corrective action.
(3)(a) In addition to any other discipline imposed pursuant to this section or discipline imposed for a violation of any practice act, the board, or the department when there is no board, may assess costs related to the investigation and prosecution of the case excluding costs associated with an attorney’s time.
(b) In any case where the board or the department imposes a fine or assessment and the fine or assessment is not paid within a reasonable time, such reasonable time to be prescribed in the rules of the board, or the department when there is no board, or in the order assessing such fines or costs, the department or the Department of Legal Affairs may contract for the collection of, or bring a civil action to recover, the fine or assessment.
(c) The department shall not issue or renew a license to any person against whom or business against which the board has assessed a fine, interest, or costs associated with investigation and prosecution until the person or business has paid in full such fine, interest, or costs associated with investigation and prosecution or until the person or business complies with or satisfies all terms and conditions of the final order.
(4) In addition to, or in lieu of, any other remedy or criminal prosecution, the department may file a proceeding in the name of the state seeking issuance of an injunction or a writ of mandamus against any person who violates any of the provisions of this chapter, or any provision of law with respect to professions regulated by the department, or any board therein, or the rules adopted pursuant thereto.
(5) In the event the board, or the department when there is no board, determines that revocation of a license is the appropriate penalty, the revocation shall be permanent. However, the board may establish, by rule, requirements for reapplication by applicants whose licenses have been permanently revoked. Such requirements may include, but shall not be limited to, satisfying current requirements for an initial license.