If you are a physician who has recently been convicted of a crime, you are likely extremely worried about the consequences to your medical license. Since every person’s case is different, there is no one answer to how your license will be impacted, but there are some common outcomes worth considering.
Below you’ll learn about how a criminal conviction could affect your medical license and when to contact a license defense lawyer.
The Importance of Reporting a Conviction
Any time you are convicted of a crime, it is essential that you report it to the Medical Board of California. Because the Board is notified by the Department of Justice of any arrests, they will discover the crime regardless of whether you report it, but it is in your best interest to report before the Board discovers this information on its own.
If an indictment or felony charge has been brought against you or if you have been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor (including a guilty verdict or no contest plea), you must report it to the Board. If you fail to do so, you are likely to be fined, severely disciplined, or both.
Preparing for an Investigation
Regardless of whether your offense is a felony or a misdemeanor, it will be thoroughly investigated by the Medical Board of California, and you should be prepared for this. The result of the investigation, however, depends on the specifics of your case.
Under California law, any criminal offense that is considered “substantially related” to your qualifications to practice medicine, or the duties or functions you perform, will qualify as unprofessional conduct, which is grounds for disciplinary action. Driving while intoxicated, reckless driving and certain sex crimes could each, in its own way, potentially be considered related to your profession.
How the Board Makes Their Decision
The Medical Board’s response to your conviction will depend on the specific circumstances surrounding your offense. Disciplinary action, license suspension, and license revocation are just a few of the many possible outcomes.
When they evaluate your case, the Board will consider not only the most recent offense but your criminal history of arrests or convictions as well as whether you complied with orders from the court.
In addition, they will consider whether you have taken steps to rehabilitate yourself in ways that can prevent this type of offense from recurring. There are many examples of what qualifies as rehabilitation, including therapy, rehabilitation for drugs and alcohol, or other measures you’ve taken to improve yourself or your situation.
Regardless of what you decide to do, the sooner after your conviction that you begin proactively working to rehabilitate yourself, the better.
What to do After a Criminal Conviction
If you have been convicted of a crime, your best course of action is to respond proactively and deal with it head-on. Start by contacting a license defense lawyer. Scott J Harris and his team have been successfully fighting for the rights of California physicians and helping them defend their licenses for years, and we will do so for you, too.
Get in touch with us today for a free consultation at 323-894-1095.