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Unlicensed Message Activity Citation

The Department of Health (“the Department”) is the state agency charges with regulting the unlicensed practice of health care professionals in the State of Florida.

Section 456.65, Florida Statute (2017) empowers the Department to issue a Notice to Cease and Desist when the Department has probable cause to believe that an person is practicing a health care profession without an active, valid license to practice that profession including message therapy.

This article explains the Uniform Unlicensed Activity Citation from the Florida Department of Health and related criminal offenses.

Attorney for Unlicensed Activity Allegations in Tampa, FL

Many of these allegations are related to practicing message threapy without a Florida message therapy license in violation of Section 456.065 and 480.047(1)(a), Florida Statute, when the Department records show that the person is not a licensed massage therapist in the State of Florida.

If you receive a Uniform Unicensed Activity Citation or a Notice to Cease and Desist, then contact the attorneys at the Sammis Law Firm in Tampa, FL, to discuss your case. We can help you respond to the citation, seek review of the citation, and file a dispute by requesting a hearing within 30 days of the date the citation was issued.

Related crimes include offering or solicitation of prostitution in a message parlor or failing to provide required documents while working in or operating the message parlor under § 480.0535, Fla. Stat.

Additionally, the owners of the message establishment might be charged with crimes related to maintaining a place of prostitution under § 796.07(2)(a) or human trafficking under Section 787.06(3), Fla. Stat.

Call (813) 250-0500 today.

Disputing the Citation for Unlicensed Message Therapy

The uniform unlicensed activity citation issued by the Florida Department of Health uses form INV Form 616U. It often provides:

Pursuant to Section 456.065, F.S., the undersigned, who is an investigator for the Department of Health, hereby certifies that the Department has probable cause to believe that the above referenced subject did violate the following provisions of law, F.S. 480.047(1)(a) and 456.065(2)(d), by committing the following, including but not limited to, act:

    • did practice, attempt to practice, or offered to practice message therapy without an active, valid Florida Massage therapy license
    • when per Department records, that person is not a licensed message therapist in the State of Florida.

Pursuant to Section 456.065, F.S., and Rule 64B-6.03, F.A.C., the Department will set the a penalty for violations of the aforesaid provision. The fines and costs are due within 30 calendar days from the date of the service of the citation.

An attorney can help you seek review of the citation by filing an appropriate petition with the Agency Clerk. The petition must be filed in conformance with Administrative Code Rules 28-106.201 or 28-106.301, as applicable. Mediation is not available.

The petition must be received by the Departmnt within 30 caliendar days fo the dtae of service of the citation. The petition must be sent by mail, hand delivery or facsimile. The failure to file a dispute within 30 calendar days of service shall constitute a waiver of hearing, and the citation shall automatically become a Final Order of the Department.

The failure to comply with the Formal Order may result in legal action by the Department, as well as additional fines and costs, in accordance with Section 456.065(2), Florida Statutes.

Don’t Waive Your Right to Judicial Review

If no request for hearing is received by the Department within 30 days of the date of service of the citation, the citation automatically becomes a Final Order which constitutes final agency action of the Department.

If this notice should become a Final Order, a party who is adversely affected is entitled to judicial review, unless waiver, pursuant to Section 120.68, Florida Stautes.

Proceedings are governed by the Florida Rules of Appeallate Procedure. Such proceedings are commenced by filing one copy of the Notice of Appeal with the Agency Clerk of the Department of Health and a second copy, accompanied by the filing fees prescribed by law, with the appropriate district court of appear in accorance with the provision of the Florida Rule of Appellate Procedure 9.110. The Notice of Appeal must be filed within 30 days of rendition of the Final Order to be reviewed. The rendition date is the date the citation becomes final agency action.

Sample Petition Involving Disputed Material Facts in the Citation

Your attorney can file your petition to disput materal facts in the citation. The petition must be double spaced on a 8 1/2 by 11 inch white paper that references the citation number and petitioner’s contact information.

Re: [name and address of the agency affected, agency’s file or identification number, if known]

Dear Agency Clerk,

The petition, ______, through undersigned counsel, hereby files this dispute of the citation in conformance with Florida Administrative Code Rles 28-106.201 or 28-106.301, as applicable. This petition is being served by mail to Agency Clerk, Department of Health (DOH), 4052 Bald Cypress Way, BIN#A-02, Tallahassee, FL, and facsimile to 850-413-8743.

We are demanding an evidentiary proceeding because of disputed issues of material fact, including the allegation in the citation that the Petition did practice, attempt to practice or offered to practice message therapy. The petitioner’s substantial interests will be affected by the agency determination because _____________________.

In support of this petition, the Petitioner shows:

  1. Petition received notice of agency decision by ______ on _________.
  2. The agency decision and citation is attached as Exhibit “A.”
  3. The disputed issues of material fact are that Petition did not  practice, attempt to practice or offered to practice message therapy on _____ at ______ location as alleged in Exhibit “A.”
  4. The ultimate facts alleged are: __________
  5. These specific facts warrant reversal of the agency’s proposed action.
  6. The following rules or statutes require reversal or modification of the agency’s prposed action (include an explanation of how the alleged facts related to the specific rules or statutes);
  7. The relief sought by the petition is to invalidate, quash, or set aside the citation.

Please refer the matter to the Division of Administrative hearing with a request that an administrative law judge be assigned to conduct the hearing. Please attach a copy of the petition and a copy of the notice of agancy action in compliance with FAC 28-106.201.

Please provide us with the date, time and location of the administrative hearing. The Petition hereby demands a copy of any documents in the possession of the DOH that will be used to support the allegations contained in the citation including any witness list, police reports, audio recording or video recordings, or any writen correspondence from any witness in this case.

If there is a copy cost to obtain such documents, please let us know the amount and how to make payment. Additionally, the Petition will be requesting a subpoeana for any witness listed in the supporting documents to force their attendance at the formal review hearing.

The Petitioner’s contact information:

Sincerely,

[[undersigned attorney’s contact information]]

This article was last updated on Friday, March 2, 2018.

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