2013 Code of Alabama
Title 34 - PROFESSIONS AND BUSINESSES.
Chapter 11 - ENGINEERS AND LAND SURVEYORS.
Section 34-11-11 - Disciplinary action.
(a) The board shall have the power to reprimand, censure, place on probation, or fine any licensee or certified engineer intern or land surveyor intern or corporation, partnership, or firm holding a certificate of authorization and to suspend, refuse to renew, or revoke the certificate of any licensee or certified engineer intern or land surveyor intern or the certificate of authorization of a corporation, partnership, or firm found guilty of any of the following:
(1) The practice of any fraud or deceit in obtaining or attempting to obtain or renew a certificate of licensure or certificate of authorization.
(2) Any gross negligence, incompetency, violation of the rules of professional conduct prescribed by the board, or any amendment thereof, or misconduct in the practice of engineering or land surveying as a professional engineer, engineer intern, professional land surveyor, or land surveyor intern.
(3) Falsely representing himself or herself as being in responsible charge of engineering work or land surveying.
(4) Permitting his or her seal, or facsimile thereof, to be used by another.
(5) An offense in another jurisdiction resulting in revocation, suspension, or voluntary surrender, to avoid disciplinary proceedings, of a license or certificate of licensure, including any agreement or stipulation executed by a licensee to avoid formal disciplinary proceedings.
(b) The board shall have the power to impose any or all of the disciplinary penalties set forth in this section against a corporation, partnership, or firm holding a certificate of authorization, when any one or more of the agents, employees, officers, partners, or owners of the corporation, partnership, or firm, licensed or nonlicensed, have committed any act, or have been guilty of any conduct, which could authorize the imposition of any of the disciplinary penalties set forth in this section. The acts or conduct by the persons must have been related to the practice of or offer to practice of engineering or land surveying by the corporation, partnership, or firm and that the acts or conduct must have been performed or occurred within the scope of the employment of any such person and with the authorization, ratification, or approval of an officer, director, principal, partner, or owner of the corporation, partnership, or firm.
(c) Any person may file a complaint alleging a violation of this section against any individual licensee, certified intern, or corporation, partnership, or firm holding a certificate of authorization. The complaints shall be in writing and shall be filed with the executive director of the board.
(d) The board may designate a person or persons to investigate and report to it on any matter related to its lawful duties and may employ legal counsel as the board may deem necessary or desirable. An investigation may be made upon receipt of a complaint or may be initiated by the board. The board may resolve violations by agreement between the board and the licensee with or without the filing of formal charges.
(e) Following an investigation, charges may be filed against any individual licensee, certificated intern, or corporation, partnership, or firm holding a certificate of authorization. The charges shall conform to the Administrative Procedure Act.
(f) With the consent of the licensee, the board may conduct an informal hearing without meeting the requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act at which no action shall be taken other than a reprimand, public or private.
(g) All charges, unless dismissed by the board as unfounded or trivial, shall be heard by the board within a reasonable time.
(h) The time and place for the hearing shall be fixed by the board, and a copy of the charges, together with a notice of the time and place of the hearing, shall be personally served on or mailed to the last known address of the individual licensee, certified intern, or corporation, partnership, or firm holding a certificate of authorization, at least 30 days before the date fixed for the hearing. At any hearing the accused individual licensee, certified intern, or corporation, partnership, or firm holding a certificate of authorization shall have the right to appear personally and by counsel, to cross-examine witnesses appearing against him, her, or them, and to produce evidence and witnesses in his or her or their own defense. If the accused fails or refuses to appear, the board may proceed to hear and determine the validity of the charges.
(i) If after the hearing three or more members of the board vote in favor of finding the accused guilty, the board shall impose one or more of the disciplinary penalties set forth in this section. Any fine imposed may not exceed two thousand five hundred dollars ($2,500) for each count or separate offense. The written decision of the board shall be delivered personally to the accused or sent by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the last known address of the accused.
(j) If disciplinary action from a hearing results in imposing a fine against a licensee, certified intern, or certificated corporation, partnership, or firm, the board shall not renew the annual certificate for this licensee, certified intern, or certificated corporation, partnership, or firm until the fine is paid in full. In the event that the fine is subsequently set aside on judicial review, as provided in the Alabama Administrative Procedure Act, the licensee, certified intern, or corporation, partnership, or firm holding a certificate of authorization shall be entitled to a prompt refund of the amount of the fine, but shall not be entitled to interest thereon.
(k) The board shall revoke the certificate of any licensee or certified intern who has been determined to be one of the following:
(1) Declared non compos mentis by a court of competent jurisdiction.
(2) Convicted of or entered a plea of guilty or nolo contendere to any crime under the laws of the United States or any state or territory thereof, which is a felony, whether related to practice or not and convicted of or entered a plea of guilty or nolo contendere to any crime, whether a felony, misdemeanor, or otherwise, an essential element of which is dishonesty or which is directly related to the practice of engineering or land surveying.
(l) When a member of the board is unable to continue the hearing either by disqualification or for any other reason, and the board is unable to reach a quorum, the Governor shall appoint as many ex officio members as is necessary to reach a quorum from a list of three persons submitted for each place by the committee of seven as specified in Section 34-11-30. These ex officio members shall serve on the board only for that hearing for which they were appointed and they may be reappointed for subsequent hearings if necessary.
(m) The licensee shall be responsible for the cost of the disciplinary action if found guilty.(Acts 1961, Ex. Sess., No. 79, p. 1976, §20; Acts 1984, 1st Ex. Sess., No. 84-792, p. 182, §1; Acts 1984, 2nd Ex. Sess., No. 85-45, p. 68, §1; Acts 1987, No 87-414, p. 607, §3; Acts 1997, No. 97-683, p. 1332, §1.)
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