Criminal convictions of any kind, including trespassing or public intoxication, are going to be headaches for anyone. But if you were caught drinking a little bit too much, is it going to affect your professional license as much as robbery or domestic violence? Unlock Legal, an Orange County-based firm of professional license attorneys, wants you to know that any kind of criminal conviction has the potential to threaten your professional license and derail your career.
No two situations are alike, and you can never tell for sure how a licensing board will respond to a professional misconduct accusation or a criminal conviction. According to the California Business and Professions Code, a professional can have their license suspended for a crime “substantially related to the qualifications, functions, or duties of the business or profession for which the licensee was issued.”
The California code outlines what can lead to the suspension of a license. But it’s up to the licensing boards to determine how severe of a punishment they’re going to hand down. Sometimes, the punishment could include probation or a fine but not a suspension.
The state code for license suspension is wide, and professional licensing boards can ostensibly argue that any crime is related to a licensee’s ability to practice in their profession. For example, the California Board of Accountancy will probably not let a person convicted of embezzling money serve as a CPA, and the Board of Registered Nursing will probably not let a person convicted of DUI practice nursing. Both crimes are arguably related to the person’s job.
It’s important to note that most traffic violations, like parking or speeding tickets, are not considered crimes or misdemeanors and will not have an impact on your professional license application. However, DUI is one of the most common vehicle-related crimes that lands professionals in hot water with their licensing boards.
If you’re a professional who is convicted of a crime, you don’t want to run the risk of losing your license. The first thing you should do is contact a professional licensing attorney. Unlock Legal, a professional license defense firm based in Southern California, has experience defending licensee’s careers before dozens of licensing boards, including the Department of Real Estate, the Board of Registered Nursing, and the Department of Insurance. Contact us by sending us an email here or by calling us at 949-988-4444.