Administrative law

I have a hearing in October with the board of registered nursing. should i get a lawyer? should i get malpractice insurance?

Back in 2013 while employed at Marina del Rey Hospital and working the night shift in the er there was an altercation. A pt came in via fd with complaint of being hit by a car. The man came in belligerent and cursing with the smell of alcohol on his breath, causing a ruckus. He was seated and triaged in a seat near the exit door. As i was escorting a lady out of the er this bully decided to confront me. Telling me that he worked for the secret service and he could kill me without anyone knowing. He chose to continue with threats and verbal abuses. i was attempting to de-escalate the situation by explaining to him that i want no part of his rage, when all of a sudden he "chest bumped" me, knocking my patient's chart to the floor. immediately to defend myself and not knowing what this violent person was capable of, i pushed him off of me. He fell backward and hit his head on the tile floor. This caused a laceration to the back of his head and blood on the floor. I got him up into a chair a wiped the blood from the floor. The md ordered a ct scan which came back negative and stapled the lac to his head. It was a very scary experience. Security at this facility is sluggish at best. I thought it was illegal for a customer to assault an rn at work. Pt called police and when they arrived i filed an assault report as did he. No arrests were made. The hospital terminated my employment. More than a year had past before the California BRN contacted me for a follow up. The family of the suspect filed a complaint with the BRN. Now the BRN officially wants my side under hearing coming this october 2015. To this date, I have not been sued. There are no actions against my license. I am fully capable and unrestricted from working anywhere in California

Nathan’s Answer

I second the opinion that dealing with this early on is very important. If the BRN is still investigating and has asked for statements, it is imperative you seek counsel, as counsel may be able to help frame the facts in a way that will diminish unprofessional conduct, assuming any can be perceived to have occurred. You may say things to a sworn investigator that hit a nerve even if you were acting within the proper framework of conduct imposed on you that might cause heightened scrutiny on your behavior. Please speak to an experienced administrative lawyer who can help take the weight of this matter off your chest from the legal perspective. Your license was not easy to gain, and it is better to pay an attorney now to try to intercept this case from going full blown than to pay much more down the road at an administrative hearing before an administrative law judge.

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