Graff & McGovern continues to assist clients during this difficult timePublished: Apr 06, 2020 by John Izzo
Graff & McGovern is continuing to operate during this difficult time. In doing so, we are taking steps to create a healthy work environment, including use of telephone, email and video conferencing, when possible, to reduce face to face interaction between our staff and/or our clients.
The government is slowing down, but not shutting down. Courts are limiting their activities. Many federal, state, county and local employees are working from home, but they are still working. This means that although they may move at a slower pace during the coming weeks and months, investigations and enforcement actions by licensing agencies, law enforcement entities and courts are continuing.
For active cases, state licensing agencies, law enforcement and courts are actively exploring and implementing alternative means to conduct investigations, hearings, trials and monitoring activities. As they adopt to the evolving social distancing recommendations / requirements, we expect more and more of those entities will move towards telephone or video encounters (rather than in person encounters) to conduct their business. Some already are. In those cases, Graff & McGovern is prepared to assist you.
If needed, you can rely on Graff & McGovern to address your legal needs. For our current and prospective clients, we encourage you to call or email us with questions or if you require assistance. When needed, we can also use video conferencing. These measures will reduce face to face interaction and be in line with current social distancing recommendations / requirements.
As always, Graff & McGovern recommends that anyone contacted by their licensing entity or law enforcement to consult with legal counsel before submitting to an interview or providing a written statement. That recommendation applies regardless of whether the interview or request for a written statement occurs in person or through some other means. Regardless of how obtained, your licensing entity and/or law enforcement can and will use your words against you.
Also, notices of intent to issue discipline (commonly referred to as a Notices of Opportunity for Hearing) are still being issued. If you receive a Notice of Opportunity for a Hearing, we recommend that you immediately contact an attorney. Hearing request deadlines have not and are not expected to be waived. Thus, failure to timely request an administrative hearing in response to a Notice of Opportunity for Hearing will result in your license being sanctioned without any input from you.
We wish everyone reading this post the best of health as we move through this novel and challenging period. We know the flood of news and pronouncements from different sources can be confusing and/or frightening. Often, fear can be reduced by facts. At this point, we know 2 things through medical experts. First, social distancing is essential. The sooner all of us practice social distancing, the sooner the crisis will abate. Second, there are protocols for responding to symptoms. For reliable guidance, go to the Centers for Disease Control at www.cdc.gov.