Tennessee Vulnerable Persons Abuse Registry
The Tennessee Department of Health is required by State Law to maintain a registry of individuals who they find to have abused or neglected vulnerable persons, or misappropriated personal property of vulnerable persons. Being placed on the abuse registry is a career ender for anyone interested in working or running a business in the healthcare industry. Most, if not all organizations you want to work for or do business with will check the abuse registry.
How does someone get placed on the Abuse Registry?
Under Tennessee law, any state government agency that finds that an individual has committed abuse or neglected vulnerable persons, or misappropriated or exploited the property of a vulnerable person, must notify the Department of Health. After being notified, the Department of Health will place that person’s name on the registry once that person has been found to have committed abuse. Each finding of abuse depends on the individual procedures and definitions of the agency that is reporting that person. But the bottom line is that you can be placed on the abuse registry without due process and often times without really knowing why. We think this is wrong and illegal.
What allows me to challenge the State Agency’s findings?
Pursuant to Tennessee statute, an individual is supposed to receive due process safeguards in which to challenge the agency’s findings and their placement on the registry. In dealing with these types of cases, our firm has found that these State agencies do not always provide the safeguards to which people are entitled. Our firm believes the process in which individuals are found guilty of abuse is unconstitutional and have actually challenged these actions. The heart of the issue is that these State Agencies will allow you to challenge the placement of your name on the registry, but not allow you to challenge their finding that you committed an act of abuse. This is a fundamental flaw in the administrative system that our firm is passionate about fighting.
What can I do to keep my name off of the abuse registry?
If you have received a notice you need to contact our firm immediately to challenge your placement on the abuse registry. An individual has thirty (30) days in which to request an administrative hearing or else they will be placed on the registry. After a hearing is requested, the next step is getting your case ready for that hearing. This will include requesting documents and information from the State agency, interviewing witnesses, conducting depositions and preparing to testify at the hearing. The abuse registry can effectively kill a person’s career, don’t let that happen to you. We want to help!