(a) Whenever the commissioner has reason to believe that any person has engaged, or is engaging, in this state in any unfair method of competition or any unfair or deceptive act or practice as defined in this article, or is engaging in the sale of preneed contracts without being properly licensed as required by this article, or is otherwise acting in violation of this chapter, and that a proceeding by the commissioner in respect thereto would be in the interest of the public, the commissioner shall institute a proceeding in accordance with this section.
(b) A statement of charges, notice, or order or other process under this chapter may be served by anyone duly authorized by the commissioner. Service may be made either in the manner provided by law for service of process in civil actions or by certifying and mailing a copy of the statement to the person affected by the statement, notice, or order or other process at his or her or its residence or principal office or place of business. The verified return by the person so serving the statement, notice, or order or other process, setting forth the manner of the service, shall be proof of the service; and the return postcard receipt for the statement, notice, or order or other process, certified and mailed as provided in this subsection, shall be proof of service of the statement, notice, or order or other process.
(c) The commissioner shall conduct or cause to have conducted a hearing in accordance with Article 1 of Chapter 2, and shall, during the conduct of the hearing, have those powers necessary to enforce this chapter; however, the penalties for failure to comply with a subpoena or with an order directing discovery shall be limited to a fine not to exceed one thousand dollars ($1,000) per violation.