So You’ve Been Placed on the Abuse Registry

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Most of our clients who are dealing with allegations from the Department of Health are fighting to keep their name off the abuse registry. More recently we have been contacted by individuals who have found out that their name has been placed on an abuse registry without their knowledge. This can cause a tremendous amount of problems, including preventing someone from being employed.

So, you are one of the people who have recently found out you were placed on an abuse registry years ago. What can you do now? Depending on how long ago you were placed on the registry, you do have options to get your name removed. The first is petitioning the Board to remove your name. This petition is very important and should be completed knowing what specific characteristic the Board is looking for in determining whether or not to remove a name from the abuse registry. Taking the time to understand how such a petition should be drafted, who should supply letters of reference and knowing who your audience is can mean the difference in your petition being granted or denied.

In the event that you have petitioned the Board for removal and have found out that your Petition has been denied, you do have an option. Tennessee law allows for a person to appeal an administrative decision to the Chancery Court for judicial review. Such a review is conducted by the court without a jury and is confined to the record of the agency’s decision alone. This review is limited to certain questions of law and, most times, focuses on the procedures and very little on the facts surrounding your case.

Any appeal of an administrative decision must be filed within 60 days of the Board’s final decision, so time is of the upmost importance. If you have found yourself on the abuse registry, contact Freeman & Fuson to discuss how we can help you.

Michael Wrenn is an Associate Attorney with Freeman & Fuson.