May 5, 2011
The Colorado State Board of Dental Examiners recently adopted a new policy on disciplinary proceedings, specifically regarding letters of concern. The policy explains the circumstances under which a letter of concern may be issued, when a case involving a letter of concern may be reopened, and how long records are maintained relating to the letter. A copy of the new policy is included below for reference. If you have any comments on the new policy, please contact CDA Director of Governmental Relations Jennifer Goodrum at 303-996-2847, 800-343-3010 x107 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Colorado State Board of Dental Examiners’ Policy Number 2.K.
Cases Dismissed with Letters of Concern: clarification of basis for dismissal, reopening of such cases and case retention period
Purpose: To clarify the basis for this type of dismissal, when the State Board of Dental Examiners may reopen such a case and designation of a specific retention period for these types of cases.
POLICY: It is the policy of the State Board of Dental Examiners (“Board”) that complaints that are dismissed with letters of concern are not dismissed as being without merit but rather are dismissed due to no reasonable cause to warrant further action at that time. Cases that are dismissed with a confidential letter of concern will be retained in the Board’s files for a period of five years.
The Board may reopen a case that was dismissed with a letter of concern in the face of a change in circumstances. Such a change in circumstances would include but not be limited to:
• discovery of new evidence supporting the underlying charges
• evidence that the licensee has engaged in further unprofessional conduct/grounds for discipline following issuance of the letter of concern in which there is a nexus between the new conduct and that was addressed in the case that was dismissed with the letter of concern
After five years from the date of the letter of concern, the file will be disposed of in accordance with the Division’s records management procedures. If the licensee has other active cases pending at the end of the five year retention period, the letter of concern may be kept for a longer period of time at the discretion of the Board staff.