Our team of professional regulations lawyers at Posner Craig Stein defends nurses before the College of Nurses of Ontario (“CNO”). If a patient of yours has filed a complaint with the college, it is important to contact capable and experienced counsel right away. We provide legal services to nurses, registered nurses, and nurse practitioners in Ontario. Facing allegations of professional misconduct and being the subject of a complaint can cause a significant amount of anxiety, and can have serious financial and reputational consequences. Entrusting us with the defence of the complaint made against you ensures that you have a capable and professional advocate at your side throughout the complaints process. Your livelihood may depend on having a complaint against you dismissed – we understand that. We will work tirelessly for you to ensure that you achieve the best possible outcome.
A complaint by a patient can trigger an investigation by the College of Nurses of Ontario. In such circumstances, the College of Nurses may appoint an investigator to investigate you and/or your practice. You may also be contacted to attend for an interview with the Executive Director. It is important to hire experienced, savvy, and professional counsel at the earliest stage possible. Our team of nurse defence lawyers will extensively prepare you for the investigatory process as well as your interview. Proper preparation at the investigatory stage can allow us to convince the College of Nurses to conclude its investigation without any further disciplinary action. We may also be able to prepare and provide written submissions to the College of Nurses to persuade them not to proceed any further. Hiring a lawyer to defend you in your dealings with the College of Nurses at the investigatory stage allows us to locate any witnesses or documentation that may assist you at the earliest possible time.
Our lawyers defend nurses before the ICRC of College of Nurses of Ontario. The ICRC screens complaints to the College. There are a wide variety of outcomes available to the ICRC. It can refer a complaint to the discipline committee for a hearing or dismiss a complaint entirely. The ICRC can also order a nurse attend for a caution-in-person before the committee, or order a nurse to complete a specialized continuing remediation and education program (“SCERP”). The ICRC has the discretion to take any other action it might deem appropriate.
Having the right defence at the ICRC is critical. Even if the ICRC does not refer a case a complaint to the discipline committee, a caution or a SCERP will result in the publication of the details of the complaint on the college’s online register. This can be reputationally and financially damaging. Our lawyers can defend you by carefully preparing persuasive written submissions to the ICRC designed to convince them to dismiss the complaint against you. Posner Craig Stein has the skill and experience to craft such submissions. The dismissal of a complaint at the ICRC can save you time and money, and prevent continuing anxiety and stress.
A hearing before the discipline committee requires careful preparation and strong litigation skills. Witnesses testify under oath and are cross-examined, defence evidence can be called, and oral and/or written submissions are made before the panel. Nurse Defence lawyers at PCS have extensive courtroom experience. The right cross-examination can result in the dismissal of the complaint against you. Our lawyers will extensively prepare for a cross-examination, and have the ability to adapt to witness’ responses in real time. We have extensive experience, developed over decades in courtrooms and tribunals across the province of Ontario.
A loss at the ICRC or Discipline Committee can be appealed. Appeals are heard at the Health Professions Appeal and Review Board. An appeal requires a close examination of the record from the proceedings at the ICRC or Discipline Committee, and the preparation of written submissions. Once written submissions have been filed, oral argument is made before a panel of adjudicators. Our nurse defence lawyers are well-equipped to advocate at these hearings. Our written and oral advocacy is sophisticated and persuasive, and has been honed over decades. We are experts at locating legal errors and polishing them to make powerful arguments on appeal. Our legal services for nurses include pursuing appeals at the highest level.
A decision of the HPARB can be judicially reviewed by the Divisional Court of Ontario. As with hearings at the HPARB, defending nurses at the Divisional Court involves written and oral advocacy before a panel of judges. Our lawyers for nurses have extensive experience arguing cases at all levels of court and in tribunals, and we have a strong record of success. We will pursue all available defences to ensure that your reputation and livelihood remain intact.
If a judicial review at the Divisional Court of Ontario is not successful, a nurse can seek leave to appeal to the Court of Appeal for Ontario. Our legal services for nurses include the preparation of this written application. If the application is successful, and leave to appeal is granted, an appeal at the Court of Appeal for Ontario involves both written and oral submissions. Our lawyers have extensive advocacy experience at the Court of Appeal, and will represent you forcefully and persuasively.
Posner Craig Stein is the right firm to handle investigations, audits and complaints at the College of Nurses of Ontario because:
If you are a nurse, registered nurse, or nurse practitioner and have been the subject of a complaint or fear you may become the subject of a complaint, it is to your benefit to retain a competent and capable defence lawyer immediately. Posner Craig Stein can assist you in avoiding reputational and financial damage and stress.
Come meet with us for a confidential consultation at our office or virtually to discuss your options.