Millions of Americans have occupational licenses to perform their jobs, including many people in various professions in Pennsylvania. The Commonwealth requires people in many different occupations to secure licenses, and licensed professionals are heavily regulated. Depending on your profession, a DUI could potentially result in problems with your license, making it important for you to retain an experienced criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible after you are charged with an impaired driving offense. A DUI lawyer in Chester County at DiCindio Law can provide experienced and knowledgeable representation to you while trying to protect your rights and your livelihood.
The State Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs regulates license holders in many different professions. Professional license holders in some occupations must report any criminal charge they face, including DUIs. Some occupations only require license holders to report convictions, and some do not require license holders to report anything at all.
Consequences of a DUI Charge for a Professional License Holder
Professional license holders can face added penalties beyond the criminal penalties of a DUI arrest and conviction. If you are convicted, you could face long-term consequences that continue to impact your life long after you have completed your DUI sentence. Depending on your profession, you might be investigated by the licensing board because of your DUI charge or conviction. You could have your license suspended or revoked or be disqualified from applying for a professional license.
Importance of Hiring an Attorney
If you are a licensed professional facing a DUI charge, you should retain an attorney as soon after you are arrested as possible. Getting help from an attorney early in the process might help you to avoid making critical mistakes that could harm your case.
At DiCindio Law, we understand the stress involved for people who have professional licenses when they are charged with DUIs. We are dedicated to helping our clients resolve their cases in the most favorable way possible under the circumstances. Having the help of an experienced lawyer might help you to secure a plea to lesser charges or win an outright dismissal of your case.
What Are The Consequences of a DUI for Licensed Medical Professionals?
There are many different medical professions that are regulated by different boards. Some of these are described below.
Dentists are required to report DUI convictions when they initially apply for a license or when they apply to renew their licenses. Any license penalties will be determined by the State Board of Dentistry on a case-by-case basis.
Physicians, respiratory therapists, physician assistants, radiology technicians, and others are regulated by the State Board of Medicine. Licensed medical professionals must report DUI convictions to the board. The board might hold a disciplinary hearing and take corrective action against people who have been convicted of DUIs. If you do not report a DUI conviction to the State Board of Medicine, your license could be revoked.
Emergency medical technicians must report DUI charges to the Pennsylvania Department of Health. In most cases, the Department of Health will immediately suspend the EMT license. If you are convicted, you could also have your certification denied or face other sanctions from the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians.
Nurses are regulated by the Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing, which requires nurses to report DUIs on initial license applications and biennial renewals. The Board of Nursing can discipline nurses by issuing a variety of sanctions, up to and including a revocation of their nursing licenses if they are convicted of a DUI or participate in an Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition program.
Pharmacists are regulated by the State Board of Pharmacy. If you are a pharmacist and are convicted of a DUI, you must report your conviction to the board. Once the board receives the report, the Professional Compliance Office will review it. You might be referred to the voluntary recovery program or the disciplinary monitoring unit by the Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs.
Commercial Drivers and DUIs
If you are a commercial driver and are arrested for a DUI while driving, you can be convicted and face the penalties for a high BAC DUI even if your BAC is as low as 0.04%. If you are a school bus driver, you can be convicted if your BAC is as low as 0.02% while you are driving a bus. A conviction could result in a suspension of your driver’s license for 12 months. If it is a second offense, you could lose your CDL for 18 months or potentially receive a lifetime ban.
Other Professionals Whose Licenses Can be Affected by DUIs
There are multiple other professionals in Pennsylvania that might be impacted by DUIs, including the following:
- Funeral directors
- Nursing home administrators
- Social workers
- Real estate agents
- Veterinary technicians
Fortunately, it is possible to successfully defend against a DUI charge with the help of a competent defense lawyer.
Talk to a DUI Lawyer in Chester County
If you hold a professional license and have been charged with a DUI, you should seek legal help as soon as possible. An experienced attorney can help you understand your charges and how they might affect your life and your license. At DiCindio Law, Michael DiCindio is a highly experienced criminal defense attorney who has a background as a former prosecutor. He uses his previous experience as a prosecutor to craft strong defenses against DUI and other criminal charges. Call us today to schedule an appointment at 610.430.3535.