In Florida, you can be arrested for Driving Under the Influence (DUI) if you operate a motor vehicle under the influence of drugs, or with a blood alcohol level of .08% If you have been arrested and charged with DUI one of the first things you’ll want to do is contact a criminal attorney to handle your case. However, if you hold a professional license issued by the Florida Department of Health (DOH) the very next thing you should do is contact an experienced health care licensing attorney.
Depending on the facts of your DUI, just being arrested and charged with DUI could prompt the Department of Health to issue an emergency order suspending or restricting your license to practice. But don’t panic. In most cases, DOH will wait for a conviction before taking any action.
Regardless of what type of medical license you hold, you are required to report your conviction to DOH within 30 days, by statute. An experienced health care licensing attorney can submit this “self-report” on your behalf. At minimum it will include documents showing your plea or the court’s verdict, the terms of your sentencing, any mitigating evidence, and any relevant case law. If you fail to report a conviction within 30 days DOH will issue a complaint against your license.
What action DOH will take against a licensee convicted of DUI is entirely dependent upon the facts. The key is whether or not the facts surrounding the DUI relate to your practice, or the ability to practice your profession. For instance, under certain circumstances, a first offense DUI might not amount to a violation of your practice act. However, if your DUI involved a collision, injuries, fatalities, or demonstrates that you have a pattern of impairment, DOH will issue a complaint against your license. Should that happen, you can expect that your licensing board will want you to undergo an evaluation conducted by the Professionals Resource Network (PRN) or the Intervention Project for Nurses (IPN). Other penalties may include costs, fines, probation, suspension, or restriction.
At Lauren A. Leikam, PLLC we will work with your criminal attorney from your arrest through to your conviction. If you are convicted, we will send the self-report of your conviction to DOH along with all supporting documentation, and relevant case law to steer your case in the right direction. We will also handle any complaint against your license that arises, start to finish.
Don’t wait to see what action DOH takes against your license. If you have been arrested for DUI schedule your free consultation today!