Empathetic Representation for Larimer and Weld County Mental Health Professionals
Attorney Jeremy Shufflebarger represents psychotherapists, psychologists, psychiatrists, counselors, and social workers in a wide range of legal matters, including defending against board complaints and grievances and responding to subpoenas and court orders to testify or produce records. The legal side of mental health services can be complex, and it is a field that is growing as mental health services become more available to the community.
You have a key role as a mental health worker, and Attorney Shufflebarger is passionate about protecting your rights in the face of legal complications. He will provide empathetic and experienced representation, performing the necessary extensive research into the laws surrounding your case and professional role to build a strong defense unique to your situation. After all, every case is unique, especially when it comes to mental health cases.
Statute of Limitations for Complaints Against Mental Health Professionals
Colorado implements several statutes regarding complaints brought against mental health professionals. If you have a complaint filed against you, or if you have some other legal matter related to your mental health work, it is important to know of your rights and how the law treats you.
One important law to note is that complaints against mental health professionals must be filed within 7 years. This pertains primarily to complaints of maintenance-of-record violations. Under Colorado law, mental health professionals must notify former clients that their records may not be retained after the 7-year period. If a client seeks to file such a complaint after 7 years (from the date of the alleged act), the court will be unlikely to hear the complaint at all.
Defending Against Board Complaints or Grievances
If you are facing a board complaint or grievance, we can defend you against your accusations. You may have been working with a high-risk client or even co-workers who filed against you. Generally, grievances will be initiated by complaints submitted to the Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA), which will, in turn, evaluate the complaint based on whether it has been filed in good faith. The board may either decide to dismiss your complaint (sometimes with a Confidential Letter of Concern) or approve it.
If the complaint has been dismissed, you have the legal right to access information in the complaint after the board has redacted the names of the client(s) who filed and any other identifying information.
If the complaint has been approved, (that is, the court has agreed that a violation of the client's rights has occurred), the court may take disciplinary actions, including:
- issuing a Letter of Admonition;
- requiring additional education;
- putting you on probation;
- ordering fines;
- suspending or revoking your license.
In serious cases, the board may pass the complaint along to the Office of Investigation.
The above are only some examples of the types of cases we handle for mental health workers. Whatever legal issue you are dealing with in your line of work, Shufflebarger Law Office, P.C. can help you find a way. You play an important and admirable role in the community as a mental health professional, and just as you help your clients through tough times, we aim to help you through difficult legal times. Mental health law is a niche field that not all law firms handle, and you can trust that Shufflebarger Law Office, P.C. has the professional knowledge and legal breadth to defend you against legal claims.