§ 49-5-12.1. Penalties for violation of child welfare agency laws and regulations.





Current through 2019-2020 Chapter 609

§ 49-5-12.1. Penalties for violation of child welfare agency laws and regulations

(a) Unless otherwise provided in subsection (r) of Code Section 49-5-12, any person who violates the provisions of Code Section 49-5-12 or who hinders, obstructs, or otherwise interferes with any representative of the department in the discharge of that person's official duties in making inspections as provided in Code Section 49-5-12 or in investigating complaints as provided in Code Section 49-5-12 shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.
(1) Any person who:
(A) Violates any licensing or registration provision of this chapter or any rule, regulation, or order issued under this chapter or any term, condition, or limitation of any license or registration certificate under this chapter thereby subjecting a child in care to injury or a life-threatening situation; or
(B) Commits any violation for which a license or registration certificate may be revoked under rules or regulations issued pursuant to this chapter may be subject to a civil penalty, to be imposed by the department, not to exceed $500.00. If any violation is a continuing one, each day of such violation shall constitute a separate violation for the purpose of computing the applicable civil penalty.
(2) Whenever the department proposes to subject a person to the imposition of a civil penalty under this subsection, it shall notify such person in writing:
(A) Setting forth the date, facts, and nature of each act or omission with which the person is charged;
(B) Specifically identifying the particular provision or provisions of the Code section, rule, regulation, order, license, or registration certificate involved in the violation; and
(C) Advising of each penalty which the department proposes to impose and its amount.

Such written notice shall be sent by registered or certified mail or statutory overnight delivery by the department to the last known address of such person. The person so notified shall be granted an opportunity to show in writing, within such reasonable period as the department shall by rule or regulation prescribe, why such penalty should not be imposed. The notice shall also advise such person that, upon failure to pay the civil penalty subsequently determined by the department, if any, the penalty may be collected by civil action. Any person upon whom a civil penalty is imposed may appeal such action pursuant to Chapter 13 of Title 50, the "Georgia Administrative Procedure Act."

(3) A civil penalty finally determined under this Code section may be collected by civil action in the event that such penalty is not paid as required. On the request of the department, the Attorney General is authorized to institute a civil action to collect a penalty imposed pursuant to this subsection. The Attorney General shall have the exclusive power to compromise, mitigate, or remit such civil penalties as are referred to the Attorney General for collection.
(4) All moneys collected from civil penalties shall be paid to the state for deposit in the general fund.

Cite as OCGA § 49-5-12.1