James M. Barber, RN, JD

Oklahoma Board of Nursing Defense
Attorney

Telephone:
(405) 209-5720
mbarbarianlaw
@gmail.com

7006 NW 63 rd Street Suite 106
Wiley Post Building
Bethany, OK 73008

Experience You Can Trust

Malpractice Cases Don't End Nursing Careers, Board Investigations Do !
                                                      Don't trust your career to just anyone.

 Nursing License Defense by a Respected Nurse Attorney Who Knows What The Law and the Practice of Nursing is About

 My reputation and history of successful litigation before the Oklahoma State Board of Nursing speaks for itself, just as my reputation as a skilled and knowledgable registered nurse has for over thirty years. In many ways the only thing a lawyer or nurse has is his or her reputation and if they don't perform, well it won't be long before EVERYBODY knows it.  This is doubly true for a nurse attorney, especially one who continues to actively work both as a registered nurse and as a busy practicing attorney committed to nursing license defense.  My reputation as a nurse attorney, representing nurses before the Board of Nursing, is important to me and I will do everything in my power to promote your interests in front of the Board of Nursing and the Investigations Division of the Board. I am proud to be a nurse attorney and proud to be in a position to represent nurses throughout Oklahoma.  Nursing license defense is the single most important area of my legal practice.
Effective nursing license defense requires extensive knowledge in both nursing and the administrative law of Oklahoma. I have both. Lets face it, any Bozo can say anything glorious about himself on his own website! Basically I am just telling you I will do my best for you and treat you right!!

 I am commited to dealing with the problems of nurses, whether it is in the area of nursing license defense before the Oklahoma State Board of Nursing, criminal charges in state court or a problem in the area of domestic law.  As a nurse attorney I know that nurses dedicate their lives to helping others, and that it can be especially painful for them when they face charges and allegations that might prevent them from being able to continue to nurse and make a living to support their families. As a nurse attorney I understand what it takes to defend against the charges brought against you by the Investigative Division of the Oklahoma State Board of Nursing. I am committed to providing a  solid legal defense of your Oklahoma nursing license that allows you to continue working in the profession you love.  No one should have to go to an initial interview before the State Board of Nursing Investigative Division or to a full hearing before the Oklahoma State Board of Nursing alone.

                   Oklahoma State Board of Nursing investigations are a serious matter
                      
Malpractice cases don't end careers, Board investigations do !

Yesterday, you received a letter from the Oklahoma State Board of Nursing that basically reads something like this:

Information regarding your nursing practice has come to the attention of the Board…we have scheduled an interview to discuss this information with you at the Oklahoma State Board of Nursing Investigations Division office at ……failing to cooperate with an official Board investigation is considered unprofessional conduct…”

Has your pulse slowed down yet ? I Bet it hasn't !  With the receipt of that letter you have taken your first step into the world of nursing license defense.  Don't allow yourself to be told "you don't need an attorney" during the Board of Nursing investigative process because its only "fact-finding."  Don't listen to the advice of other nurses or family when they tell you that "...if you meet with the board of nursing investigator with a lawyer you look guilty". Does that make sense to you when your  income is at stake ? 

The role of any regulatory board, including the Oklahoma State Board of Nursing , is to protect the public; NOT to advocate for the best interest of the nurse being investigated! You need to write that on your palm in sharpie and look at it often as you are going through this ordeal.


The sad truth is that most nurses represent themselves in Oklahoma State Nursing Board disciplinary investigations, and the results speak for themselves!  They either think that legal representation for nursing license defense is to expensive or they mistakenly believe they have "nothing to fear" from the board of nursing.  According to  the Oklahoma State Board of Nursing's  own Fiscal Year 2011 Annual Report over 1100 investigations were opened by the Board's Investigative Division. Of those disciplinary investigations, 106 were found to have no violation or closed for insufficient evidence.  However, 909 resulted in some degree of discipline against the nurse's license running the gamut from license revocation to administrative fines, reprimands and requirements to attend remedial classes.  Mathematically that means that 82% of the time action is taken by the Oklahoma State Board of Nursing against a nurses license following a complaint being lodged with the Board of Nursing. So far in the first quarter of 2013 alone, the Oklahoma State Board of Nursing has received 385 complaints regarding nursing practice and has opened 235 cases! These statistics are public records and can be found on the Oklahoma State Board of Nursing website, www.ok.gov/nursing. There is EVERY indication that the number of investigations, and the number of disciplinary actions, will continue to increase in 2013. Each year the number of Board hearings continue to increase by around 20%. The need for aggressive and effective nursing license defense in Oklahoma is clearly on the rise. The power of the Oklahoma State Board of Nursing cannot be overstated! The Oklahoma Nurse Practice Act provides a mandate for the Board of Nursing to regulate nursing in Oklahoma.  I believe that the best answer to nursing license defense is a nurse attorney to decipher the amalgamated and complex world of nursing and convoluted and often confusing area of  administrative law that must be followed by the Board of Nursing as they prosecute your Oklahoma nursing license.

Regardless of whether or not you realize it, everything you say, write or communicate to the Nursing Board Investigative Division, it's investigators or it's staff, can and will be used against you.  Defense of your nursing license begins at the very first contact that you have with the investigator.  Nursing Board disciplinary investigations are administrative cases and, just like civil and criminal cases, these proceedings are adversarial by nature. You need to consider retaining a nurse attorney at the beginning of the disciplinary investigation to assist you. Adopting a "wait and see" approach regarding attorney representation may backfire and cost you your livelihood. If you do not have a nurse attorney to advise you of your rights at that first interview, guide you through the process and help you to prepare your case, you might very well say something that could sink your nursing license defense at the very start of the investigative process.  Having a nurse attorney represent you, starting before the initial interview with the Board Investigations Division, can help protect your
rights and your license. Nursing license defense is a complicated and fact intensive undertaking.  Don't go it alone !

Your nursing license is your livelihood and you must take steps to protect yourself. It is your responsibility as your own advocate to seek attorney representation; don't rely upon others to 'inform" you that you need legal representation, be proactive! Nursing license defense is not for the faint of heart or those without a clear understanding of administrative law, the Oklahoma Nurse Practice Act and the nursing process. A nurse attorney, and by that I mean an attorney who has a solid background in nursing, the Oklahoma Nurse Practice Act and administrative law, could be the difference between you keeping your nursing license, and subsequently your livelihood, or being suspended from the practice of nursing for years. Nursing license defense in Oklahoma is not an area of law that every lawyer has experience with. Pick one that has been to the board of nursing frequently and that has a good "track record" of both settling cases before they have to go to the full Board at the quarterly meeting AND has ample experience presenting to the full Board.  Nursing license defense at the Oklahoma State Board of Nursing quarterly meeting is nothing less than a TRIAL, and you want to find a nurse attorney that has "been there and done that". I HAVE !

 Retaining a nurse attorney involves hiring an objective and unbiased professional to review the facts, formulate your defense, and represent your best interests.  Before summarily deciding that you dont need a attorney to defend your nursing license, consult with one!   I am both an Oklahoma  Registered Nurse with over thirty years experience in nursing and licensed attorney with years of experience representing nurses before the Oklahoma State Board of Nursing, and I WOULD NOT go to meet with the Board of Nursing investigator without an attorney. 
 
The practice of law, like medicine, is becoming more specialized. Nursing license defense is no different.  You want to hire an experienced attorney to represent you. If you need an administrative law attorney or a nurse-attorney and the issue involves a matter outside of Oklahoma, contact The American Association of Nurse Attorneys (TAANA) at
www.taana.org
Of course my opinion, for what it is worth, is that you need a nurse attorney to represent you in your nursing license defense before the Oklahoma State Board of Nursing. 

 

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You can email me regarding your case using the contact form below.  I am also available during office hours at (405) 209-5720..

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