2019 Florida Statutes
493.6121 Enforcement; investigation.—
(1) The department shall have the power to enforce the provisions of this chapter, irrespective of the place or location in which the violation occurred, and, upon the complaint of any person or on its own initiative, to cause to be investigated any suspected violation thereof or to cause to be investigated the business and business methods of any licensed or unlicensed person, agency or employee thereof, or applicant for licensure under this chapter.
(2) In any investigation undertaken by the department, each licensed or unlicensed person, applicant, agency, or employee shall, upon request of the department provide records and shall truthfully respond to questions concerning activities regulated under this chapter. Such records shall be maintained in this state for a period of 2 years at the principal place of business of the licensee, or at any other location within the state for a person whose license has been terminated, canceled, or revoked. Upon request by the department the records must be made available immediately to the department unless the department determines that an extension may be granted.
(3) The department shall have the authority to investigate any licensed or unlicensed person, firm, company, partnership, or corporation when such person, firm, company, partnership, or corporation is advertising as providing or is engaged in performing services which require licensure under this chapter or when a licensee is engaged in activities which do not comply with or are prohibited by this chapter; and the department shall have the authority to issue an order to cease and desist the further conduct of such activities, or seek an injunction, or take other appropriate action pursuant to s. 493.6118(2)(a) or (c).
(4) In the exercise of its enforcement responsibility and in the conduct of any investigation authorized by this chapter, the department shall have the power to subpoena and bring before it any person in the state, require the production of any papers it deems necessary, administer oaths, and take depositions of any persons so subpoenaed. If any person fails or refuses to comply with a proper subpoena to be examined or fails or refuses to answer any question about her or his qualifications or the business methods or business practices under investigation or refuses access to agency records in accordance with s. 493.6119, the circuit court of Leon County or of the county wherein such person resides may issue an order on the application of the department requiring such person to comply with the subpoena and to testify. Such failure or refusal shall also be grounds for revocation, suspension, or other disciplinary action. The testimony of witnesses in any such proceeding shall be under oath before the department or its agents.
(5) In order to carry out the duties of the department prescribed in this chapter, designated employees of the Division of Licensing of the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services may obtain access to the information in criminal justice information systems and to criminal justice information as defined in s. 943.045, on such terms and conditions as are reasonably calculated to provide necessary information and protect the confidentiality of the information. Such criminal justice information submitted to the division is confidential and exempt from the provisions of s. 119.07(1).
(6) The department may institute judicial proceedings in the appropriate circuit court seeking enforcement of this chapter or any rule or order of the department.
(7) Any investigation conducted by the department pursuant to this chapter is exempt from s. 119.07(1) until:
(a) The investigation of the complaint has been concluded and determination has been made by the department as to whether probable cause exists;
(b) The case is closed prior to a determination by the department as to whether probable cause exists; or
(c) The subject of the investigation waives her or his privilege of confidentiality.
History.—ss. 2, 11, ch. 90-364; s. 17, ch. 91-248; s. 4, ch. 91-429; s. 5, ch. 92-183; s. 2, ch. 93-197; s. 10, ch. 94-172; s. 69, ch. 95-144; s. 326, ch. 96-406; s. 1139, ch. 97-103; s. 7, ch. 97-248; s. 9, ch. 2002-295; s. 2, ch. 2006-165; s. 10, ch. 2011-205.