DDSG Criminal Law has significant experience representing people charged with professional disciplinary offences in their respective areas of employment in Alberta.
We have defended lawyers, accountants, doctors, teachers, paramedics, and police officers against allegations that they have breached their respective Codes of Conduct or have broken criminal or regulatory laws.
Disciplinary hearings are a conduct review procedure that are usually conducted by a professional organisation. A complaint is brought forward in order to be heard and responded to by a panel. This panel then determines the consequences, if any, of the complaint.
Common Charges Related to Professional Disciplinary Hearings
The area of professionally disciplinary hearing law includes the following possible charges:
- Gross misconduct
- Professional misconduct
- Theft and/or fraud
- Verbal abuse, harassment, and/or bullying
- Sexual harassment and/or misconduct
Possible Outcomes From Disciplinary Hearings
- No consequences
- Financial penalty or fine
- Suspension of membership or ability to practise
- Termination of membership and ability to practise
- Mandatory education
- Community service
- Costs for the hearing
Frequently Asked Questions About Professional Disciplinary Hearings in Alberta
1. Do I have to report to my licensing board if I have been charged with a criminal offence?
This all depends on the specific requirements of your licensing board. If you have a duty to do so, you could risk losing your professional licence if you do not. Even if you are found not guilty, or the charges are dropped, you could face consequences for failing to report.
2. If I do report criminal charges to my licensing board, can I still work?
Again, this all depends on your licensing board as well as the type of offence committed. For some offences, you may be allowed to continue working pending the outcome of your charges.
However, having severe charges (such as a sexual assault) filed against you could negatively impact the integrity and reputation of other professionals in your career field and you may be suspended pending the outcome of your charges.
3. What if I don’t show up to my professional disciplinary hearing?
If you fail to attend the hearing without a reasonable excuse, the meeting may go ahead without you and you will not be able to defend your case. The panel will have to go solely on the evidence submitted beforehand.
Do Professional Disciplinary Hearings Require a Lawyer?
While some criminal law and Charter of Rights provisions are applicable to these prosecutions, there are many other specialised administrative law principles unique to professional disciplinary hearings.
All of which our lawyers at DDSG are familiar with.
Contact DDSG Criminal Law today for legal representation and to ensure your rights are protected.