Reporting Judgments and Settlements

Board Policy on Compliance With G.S. 90-121.6

North Carolina General Statutes section 90-121.6 requires that licensees of this Board and those persons applying for licensure by this Board report to the Board:

    1. All medical malpractice judgments or awards affecting the optometrist; and,

    2. All settlements in the amount of $75,000 or more entered on or after May 1, 2008, related to an incident of alleged malpractice; and,

    3. All settlements related to any one incident of alleged malpractice not reported under paragraph 2 where instead of a single payment of $75,000 or more, there is a series of payments made to the same claimant which, in the aggregate, equal or exceed $75,000.

Such reports are required to contain:

    1. The date of the judgment, award, payment, or settlement.

    2. The city, state, and country in which the incident resulting in the judgment, award, payment, or settlement occurred.

    3. The date of the incident resulting in the judgment, award, payment, or settlement.

However, G.S. 90-121.6 is silent as to the time within which such information must be reported to the Board. Because such information could be significant to consumers who are making visual health care decisions, the Board believes it is important that such information be reported promptly after the occurrence of the event giving rise to the duty to report.

Therefore, in addition to the information required on the prospective licensee’s application for licensure and the information required on the application for renewal of license for current licensees, the Board will require that all persons having a duty to report the information specified by G.S. 90-121.6 shall provide such information to the Board, in writing, no later than 60 days after the date of the occurrence of the event giving rise to such duty to report. No particular form or format for reporting such information will be required, but the reporting optometrist should confirm receipt by the Board office through methods such as certified mail return receipt, overnight courier proof of delivery, or via return email.

Failure to comply with this Policy may be determined by the Board to be an act of deceit or misrepresentation in attempting to obtain or renew a license (G.S. 90-121.2(a)(1)) and/or unprofessional conduct (G.S. 90-121.2(a)(25).