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SPCS Complaint Resolution Procedures

Referral to Enforcement

  • The investigation report is reviewed by case preparation staff and an enforcement action recommendation is prepared and submitted to the Assistant General Counsel for structural pest control enforcement.
  • A decision on the proposed enforcement action is made in consultation with the Deputy General Counsel for Enforcement, utilizing the penalty matrix established for assessing penalties for structural pest control violations.

 

Notice of Enforcement Action/Payment of Penalties

  • Unless closed without action, a Notice of Violation (monetary penalty or license sanction) or Warning Letter is sent to those persons believed to have violated Texas structural pest control laws. Respondents receiving a Warning Letter may respond, but no further action will be taken with regard to the violations alleged in the Warning Letter.
  • For violations involving assessment of a monetary penalty or license sanction (modification, suspension, probation, or revocation), each accused person (respondent) has 20 days to respond to the alleged violations and recommended penalties.
  • If the respondent agrees and pays the penalty, an order will be issued finalizing the enforcement action and a copy of the order will be sent to the respondent.

 

Administrative Hearings/Decision on Case

  • If the respondent wishes to contest the alleged violation, the amount of the assessed penalty (including any license sanctions), or both, the respondent may elect to request a hearing before the State Office of Administrative Hearings (SOAH). A hearing may also be set if attempts to settle a contested case are not successful.
  • Hearings are scheduled with the State Office of Administrative Hearings (SOAH). An administrative law judge from SOAH will hear testimony and receive documentary evidence, in accordance with the Texas Rules of Evidence and SOAH's procedural rules, and issue a Proposal for Decision (PFD), with findings regarding whether a violation occurred or not and, if so, the amount of the penalty to be assessed. Both the agency and the respondent will have an opportunity to respond to the PFD prior to a final decision by the Commissioner or his designee. The final decision will be in the form of an order and a copy of will be sent to the respondent.
  • Final agency decisions may be appealed to a district court in accordance with applicable laws and procedural rules.

 

Settlement of Contested Cases
 

  • Contested cases may be resolved without litigation through an agreement between the department and the respondent which provides for a resolution different from the administrative penalty or license sanction, or both, that was originally proposed in the notice of violation.
  • Settlement offers for less than the recommended penalty may be entertained or extended based on discussions with the respondent that reveals extenuating or mitigating circumstances or other factors that justify a reduction in or alternate form of penalty.

Settlement of Consumer Complaints

  • When a consumer complaint is filed, TDA may engage in informal settlement negotiations with structural pest control businesses on behalf of structural pest control consumers in accordance with SPCS Rule 7.113.
  • • All consumer complaint settlements shall be approved and signed by the deputy general counsel for enforcement. The deputy general counsel for enforcement shall state in writing the reasons for rejecting a proposed settlement.

 

SPCS complaint resolution procedures are to inform the consumers of the responsibilities and legislative guidelines when SPCS investigates a complaint. 

SPCS is responsible for regulating the Pest Control Industry in the State of Texas.  SPCS's authority is set forth in Occupations Code, Chapter 1951.  Our mission is to provide a vital function in the protection of the health, safety and welfare of the citizens of Texas and the environment by licensing, regulating, and setting standards and criteria for Structural Pest Control.  We act as an investigative arm of the Environmental Protection Agency.  

SPCS cannot order a SPCS licensee to refund any monies paid by a consumer. 

SPCS cannot order a SPCS licensee to settle a claim for damages with a consumer. 

You are allowed one free copy of the SPCS's investigation report when completed.  Your one free copy can be obtained by making a written request to the SPCS's office in Austin, Texas.  There will be a copy charge if more than one copy of an investigation report is requested. 

SPCS representative will communicate written settlement offers made by the SPCS's licensee or consumer to the other party.  SPCS will not comment on the merits of any settlement offer. 

You may contact SPCS to determine the status of a SPCS licensee.   

A SPCS licensee cannot make untrue, misleading, or deceptive statements to you relating to structural pest control.

A SPCS licensee cannot refuse to provide you service because of your race, color, religion, sex, familial status, national origin, or mental or physical disability.