Administrative Law Topics: Criminal Convictions

The effect of criminal convictions on California professional licenses

Medical Board Terminates Physician's Probation Early

The Medical Board of California granted our Petition for Penalty Relief after an administrative hearing.  Our client is a physician who accepted his original California Medical License with five years of probation because of a conviction for driving under the influence of alcohol as a medical resident.  After two years of probation, we petitioned for early termination of the California medical license probation.  

CA Physicians Licensed After Arrest and Deferred Entry of Judgment

The California Medical Board issued physician and surgeon certificates (medical licenses) to three license applicants who were arrested in different states.  Each of the doctors applying for a California medical license had a criminal case which resulted in deferred entry of judgment rather than conviction.

One was arrested for misdemeanor shoplifting on the East Coast.  The case ended in "Adjournment in Contemplation of Dismissal." There was no guilty plea or conviction.  The charges were later dismissed. 

Doctor Discloses DUI -- No Action by Medical Board of California

Our client is a medical doctor who was convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol in California. California physicians are required to report misdemeanor criminal convictions within 30 days. (See Business and Professions Code section 802.1.)  We prepared a report letter disclosing the conviction and explaining the circumstances.  Fortunately, the doctor's DUI was a first time offense and his or her blood alcohol level was close to the legal limit.

RN With Single DUI Wins in Superior Court—Nursing Board Appeals

In 2012, the California Court of Appeal will decide whether the Board of Registered Nursing can order an RN to serve probation because of a single DUI conviction. This appeal comes after our second successful petition for writ of administrative mandate in San Francisco Superior Court.

Embarrassing Conviction Did Not Prevent Issuance of Real Estate License

Our client disclosed a common misdemeanor conviction on an application for a California real estate salesperson's license.  The California Department of Real Estate (DRE) asked our client for detailed information surrounding the conviction.  Unfortunately, the arrest involved conduct of a sexual nature that is not reflected in the conviction.  The good news is that the event happened many years ago when our client was very young.

Avoiding Denial of a California Medical License by Withdrawing the Application

Medical license applicants in California may have the option to withdraw their applications before a final license denial.  Here is how it works:

The process starts when a medical resident or physician licensed in another state (or foreign jurisdiction) applies for a medical license in California.  The license application is made to the Medical Board of California where a medical license is formally called a physician and surgeon’s certificate. 

Occupational Therapists (OTs) Arrested for DUI in California Face Investigation by the Board of Occupational Therapy Within Days of Arrest

California Occupational Therapists (OTs) arrested for DUI can now expect investigation letters from the Board of Occupational Therapy (CBOT) within days of arrest. CBOT receives notice of the arrest from the California Department of Justice, which cross-references criminal records against professional licensing records.  Occupational Therapists can expect a letter from the Board requesting a detailed description of the events that led to the arrest under penalty of perjury along with case information for the pending criminal case.

Teacher with DUI: California Commission for Teacher Credentialing (CTC) Cannot Automatically Suspend or Revoke Credential

If a teacher has a DUI conviction, can the state Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CTC) utilize a “per se” standard and conclude that the person is aromatically disqualified as a matter of law from teaching in California?  The answer is no.  In the case of Broney v. California Commission on Teacher Credentialing, the court rejected use of a  “per se” rule. 

Medical License Approved After Misdemeanor Criminal Conviction and Failure to Disclose

An out-of-state applicant for a California medical license had a misdemeanor conviction for petty theft which occurred more than twenty years ago when the applicant was a teen-age undergraduate.  At the time of conviction,  a 3 month summary probation was imposed and the court as well as the applicant's attorney indicated that the matter would be expunged and need not be reported.  This information, however, was erroneous and Business and Professions Code section 480(a)(1) was clearly applicable, making expunged criminal records reportable notwithstanding a motion to expunge under Penal Cod

California Board of Registered Nursing Closes Investigation Against R.N. Convicted of One DUI

Our client is a nurse with a long nursing career and no record of discipline.  She was recently convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI)--a first offense.  In 2009, we started seeing cases in which the California Board of Registered Nursing filed Accusations based on first-time DUIs.  In this case, we were successful in convincing the Board that our client's case does not warrant disciplinary action.  The investigation has been closed.