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      RS 37:81     


§81.  Hearings by the board

A.  In any case where probable cause with respect to a violation by a holder of a certificate, permit, or privilege granted under R.S. 37:94 has been determined by the board, whether following an investigation or upon receipt of a written complaint furnishing grounds for a determination of such probable cause or upon receipt of notice of a decision by the board of accountancy of another state furnishing such grounds, the board shall issue a complaint setting forth appropriate charges and set a date for a hearing before the board on such charges.  The board shall serve a copy of the complaint and notice of the time and place of the hearing upon the holder of the certificate or permit, together with a copy of the board's rules governing proceedings, not less than thirty days prior to the date of the hearing, either by personal delivery or by mailing a copy by certified mail, or such other delivery methods available to the board, to the holder of the certificate or permit at the address last known to the board or to the registered agent for service of process.

B.  A holder of a certificate, permit, or privilege against whom a complaint has been issued, referenced herein as the respondent, shall have the right, reasonably in advance of the hearing, to examine and copy the report of investigation, if any, and any documentary or testimonial evidence and summaries of anticipated evidence in the board's possession relating to the subject matter of the complaint.  The board shall specify the manner in which such right may be exercised.

C.  In such a hearing, the respondent may appear in person or through counsel, or in the case of a firm through a partner, officer, director, shareholder, member, manager, or through counsel.  The respondent may examine witnesses and evidence presented in support of the complaint and present evidence and witnesses on the respondent's own behalf.  The respondent shall be entitled upon application to the board to the issuance of subpoenas to compel the attendance of witnesses and the production of documentary evidence.

D.  The evidence supporting the complaint shall be presented by the investigating officer, by a board member designated for that purpose, or by counsel.  A board member who presents the evidence or who has conducted the investigation of the matter shall not participate in the board's decision of the matter.

E.  The board may be advised by counsel in a hearing who shall not be the same counsel who presents or assists in presenting the evidence supporting the complaint.

F.  The board shall not be bound by technical rules of evidence in such hearing.

G.  A stenographic or electronic record of the hearing shall be made and filed with the board.  A transcript need not be prepared unless review is sought or the board determines that there is good cause for its preparation.

H.  In such a hearing, a recorded vote of a majority of all members of the board then in office, excluding members disqualified by reason of Subsection D of this Section, shall be required to sustain any charge and to impose any penalty with respect thereto.

I.  If, after service of a complaint and notice of hearing, the respondent fails to appear at the hearing, the board may proceed to hear evidence against the respondent and may enter such order as it deems warranted by the evidence, which order shall be final unless the respondent petitions for review.  However, within ten days from the date of such order upon a showing of good cause for the respondent's failure to appear and defend, the board may set aside the order and schedule a new hearing on the complaint.

J.  Any person or firm adversely affected by any order of the board may file a written petition for review of the order with the Civil District Court for the parish of Orleans within thirty days after the entry of the order.  The procedures for review and the scope of the review shall be as specified in the judicial review of adjudication procedures of the Administrative Procedure Act.

K.(1)  In any case where the board renders a decision imposing discipline against a respondent, the board shall examine its records to determine whether the licensee holds a certificate, permit, or privilege in any other state.  If so, the board shall notify the board of accountancy of such other state of its decision by mail within forty-five days of rendering the decision.

(2)  The board may also furnish information relating to such proceedings to other regulatory authorities and to private professional organizations having a disciplinary interest in the respondent.

(3)  Where a petition for review has been filed, such notification and furnishing of information shall await the resolution of such review.  If the resolution is in favor of the respondent, no such notification or furnishing of information shall be made.

Acts 1979, No. 510, §1; Acts 1991, No. 880, §1, eff. Jan. 1, 1992; Acts 1999, No. 473, §1, eff. June 18, 1999; Acts 2006, No. 214, §1; Acts 2007, No. 102, §1.

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