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How will a DUI affect a career in healthcare?

A simple mistake can mean severe repercussions for employees in the healthcare industry. A DUI arrest and conviction could lead to more than just jail time, but also a damaged career. Anyone in the healthcare industry facing DUI charges should contact an experienced criminal defense attorney to mitigate the charges.

Driving privileges and employment

A DUI conviction can affect your ability to get to work. You may lose your driving privileges for a period of time. Repeat DUI convictions can even lead to a revoked driver’s license for several years. Missed days of work add up, impacting performance at your place of work.

Employers in healthcare will conduct background checks on prospective employees. A background check will uncover a DUI conviction. The Fair Credit Reporting Act prohibits the reporting of criminal arrests after seven years. That means that if you are arrested but your attorney wins the case, then an employer cannot see that information after seven years. If you were convicted of a DUI then an employer could see that indefinitely.

Fortunately in California, certificates of rehabilitation can be used to gain employment after a DUI conviction. If you successfully complete probation for a DUI, then you can file a motion to withdraw your plea or set aside the verdict, resulting in a dismissal on your record. This may be helpful for health care administrators, but anyone applying for a doctor or nursing license must disclose a DUI conviction from the past 10 years.

How will it affect a physicians or nursing license?

Both physicians and nurses must report public offenses to the Board. As far as consequences, every situation is different based on the circumstances. Both the California Board of Registered Nursing and the Medical Board of California evaluate incidents on a case-by-case-basis. They will consider circumstances surrounding the arrest as well as your previous history of arrests. A DUI conviction, especially multiple convictions, can certainly be cause for disciplinary action.

The Medical Board of California is known to be strict. In Board proceedings the physician may be portrayed as an alcohol abuser, rather than someone who made a simple mistake. That means that the Board can enforce long probationary periods. This can cause issues with insurance, employment, and credentials. The physician may need to deal with fines, alcohol testing and daily check-ins. This is why it is highly important for anyone with a professional license facing DUI charges to contact an experienced defense attorney.

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