The California Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) is the consumer protection agency that licenses and regulates more than 3.5 million licenses in over 280 license types. DCA is the parent agency under which almost every California professional licensing agency operates. The DCA has jurisdiction over 40 professional and occupational licensing boards, from the Board of Registered Nursing and the Medical Board of California to the Board of Accountancy and Board of Pharmacy.
The Division of Investigation (DOI) is the police agency for the Department of Consumer Affairs, providing law enforcement investigation services for DCA licensing boards. Established in 1961, the DOI helps the DCA achieve it’s consumer protection mission by investigating alleged violations of California laws, regulations and professional standards. When licensing boards receive complaints or reports of alleged misconduct, they are often referred to the DOI for investigation.
DOI investigators are sworn peace officer with the authority to arrest and execute warrants as authorized in BPC § 159.5, BPC § 160 and 830.3(a) PC. DOI’s experienced investigative staff come from diverse backgrounds, including former law enforcement detectives, computer forensics experts, internal affairs investigators, sex crime investigators and medical investigators. They typically have years of experience in the art of interrogation, sting operations and investigation.
The Division of Investigation is specially funded by professional licensing fees and investigation cost reimbursements from disciplined licensees. As of July 1, 2014, the DOI consists of two units, the Investigation and Enforcement Unit (IEU) and the Health Quality Investigation Unit (HQIU). Each of the two units provide specialized investigative services to different boards, bureaus and committees within the DCA.