Undercover Investigations and the Use of Deception by Law Enforcement Attorneys
Mark R. Brengelman focuses on representing health care practitioners before licensure boards and in other professional regulatory matters. He also represents children as Guardian ad Litem and parents as Court Appointed Counsel in confidential child dependency, neglect, and abuse proceedings in family court.
Mark became interested in law when he graduated with both Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Philosophy from Emory University in Atlanta. He then earned a Juris Doctorate from the University of Kentucky College of Law. Mark became an Assistant Attorney General for Kentucky in the area of administrative and professional law as the assigned counsel and prosecuting attorney to numerous health professions licensure boards.
Retiring from the state government in 2012, Mark became certified as a hearing officer and opened his own law practice. Mark registered as legislative agent (lobbyist) for the Kentucky Association of Pastoral Counselors for the passage of Senate Bill 61 by the 2014 General Assembly. He is the immediate past Chair of the Health Law Section of the Kentucky Bar Association.
As a frequent participant in continuing education, Mark has been a presenter for thirty national and state organizations and private companies. These include the Kentucky Bar Association, Kentucky Office of the Attorney General, the National Attorneys General Training and Research Institute, the Federation of Associations of Regulatory Boards.
Mark was also the founding presenter in 2013-14 for “Navigating Ethics and Law for Mental Health Professionals,” a continuing education training approved by five Kentucky mental health licensure boards. He also founded in 2017 “The Kentucky Code of Ethical Conduct: Ethical Practice; Risk Management, and; the Code of Ethical Conduct” as an approved, state-mandated continuing education for social workers.
Learn the general steps a state government agency undertakes to conduct investigations into misconduct in health care practice with a focus on undercover investigations of various health care practitioners. Cover the differences between civil and criminal investigations with the differing goals of each, and understand how criminal rights span both kinds of investigations.
Investigations either exonerate or implicate licensed health care practitioners for potential violations of law for which their license to practice is at stake. Investigations may include undercover exposes – know the limits and boundaries of what the government may do in an undercover investigation. Is the government allowed to lie? To uncover the truth? This program offers an objective, thorough review of undercover investigations conducted by the government against a licensed health care practitioner.
Review the different standards and rights of the accused under investigation by the state against an individual health care practitioner. Recognize the basic difference in civil and criminal investigations – where both may be carried out by the same agency using undercover, secret operatives often posing as a patient.
- Legal standards for undercover investigations as applied to the government
- Due process rights and procedures of the individual under investigation
- Government remedies carrying out the objectives of a secret investigation in health care
- Defenses to the civil investigative process to resist government inquiry
- Select case law review of applicable undercover fraud and licensure cases where deception has been used, and
- Ethical obligations of the attorney advising the client in carrying out or responding to an undercover investigation
Course Level - Advanced
Who Should Attend
Health care law attorneys; licensed health care practitioners in private practice; medical directors of health facilities; office managers and medical directors of private medical offices; health care managers and executives; corporate counsel in health care; health care administrators; university faculty in health care; allied health professionals in graduate-level medical education across the many health care professions; corporate compliance officers; Individual health care practitioners; health care attorneys; government investigators; state and federal health care agencies; teachers and educators in graduate-level medical and legal education across the many health care professions; corporate counsel in health care; Attorneys at Law; Hospital Administrators; Health Care Facility Managers; Government employees; Physician and Medical Office Managers
Why Should You Attend
This webinar focuses on how state government agencies tasked with investigating alleged misconduct in health care generally follows prescribed steps in investigating the misconduct, except when acting undercover. This investigation can include agencies with authority over individually licensed health care practitioners (doctors, nurses, dentists) or with authority over the administration of government health care programs (Medicaid/Medicare) – whose budgets are in the hundreds of millions of dollars.
When the government goes about gathering (and even seizing) evidence and interviewing witnesses – such as former employees (and even current employees) – this is a little-known process to the health care practitioner. Civil investigations obtain documents and records easily with nothing more than a piece of paper – an administrative subpoena.
On the other hand, criminal investigations more often use a search warrant authorized by a judge in court – and are sometimes carried out with a fork-lift and a moving van as the agency hauls away original documents, records, computer equipment, and other evidence. This webinar identifies the one thing in common with all these investigative techniques is their openness and transparency. What does the government do when it undertakes a secret, covert, and undercover investigation? What patient may actually be an undercover government agent recording your every conversation?
This informative webinar dispels the uncertainty about how investigations are conducted by a state government agency and focus most on the individual health care practitioner in a licensure investigation when undercover sleuthing is done. Health care practitioners who are fully informed about these procedures may better defend their actions and work successfully through the investigative process knowing their patient may be an undercover plant.