Nurses Charged with DUI
When a nurse is charged with driving under the influence (“DUI”), several special problems arise. Along with everyone else, the nurse wants to fight the DUI case for the best possible result.
The best result in these cases requires contesting the administrative suspension of the driver’s license within the first ten days after the arrest and getting the suspension invalidated.
For the criminal charge, the best result is getting the charges dismissed outright in court or at least reduced to a less serious offense such as reckless driving.
If your case is not dismissed outright, then under Section 456.072(1)(x), you must report any plea to a criminal charge, including a DUI or reckless driving, to the Board of Nursing within 30 days of the day you were found guilty or entered a plea (including a guilty, nolo contendre, or no contest plea) regardless of whether you were adjudicated guilty of the crime or whether the court withheld adjudication.
Our attorneys are familiar with the requirements of the Intervention Project for Nurses (IPN) and ways to avoid certain time consuming and expensive requirements that might otherwise occur.
Attorney for Nurses Charged with DUI in Tampa, FL
First, the nurse needs a criminal defense attorney focused on fighting DUI cases. Second, the nurse needs an attorney who is also experienced representing health care professionals that are facing a licensure issue.
We can help you find substance abuse treatment options that will help you successfully complete DUI school and satisfy conditions that might be imposed by the Board of Nursing or the Intervention Project for Nurses (IPN).
Click here to read more about our Recent Case Results in DUI Cases.
If you are a Registered Nurses and Licensed Practical Nurses charged with DUI, then contact an attorney at the Sammis Law Firm to discuss the best ways to fight your case for an outright dismissal or at least a reduction in the charges. For a first DUI, you might be eligible for the new DUI diversion program in Hillsborough County, FL.
Whether you are charged with a DUI involving a breath test, urine test, blood test, or a refusal to submit to testing, then call us to discuss your case. Find out why we ALWAYS recommend demanding a Formal Review Hearing within the first 10 days after the DUI arrest.
Reporting a Plea in a Criminal Case to the Board of Nursing
Section 456.072(1)(x) provides that the following constitutes grounds for which disciplinary action may be taken against a nursing license:
(1)(x) Failing to report to the board, or the department if there is no board, in writing within 30 days after the licensee has been convicted or found guilty of, or entered a plea of nolo contendere to, regardless of adjudication, a crime in any jurisdiction.
Convictions, findings, adjudications, and pleas entered into prior to the enactment of this paragraph must be reported in writing to the board, or department if there is no board, on or before October 1, 1999.
The Board of Nursing Investigations after a DUI Arrest or Conviction
For nurses, what happens outside the courtroom is almost as important as what happens inside the courtroom. In Florida, the Board of Nursing (BON) is responsible for monitoring nurses with alcohol or substance abuse issues.
The BON reviews complaints, the initial and renewal applications for the nursing license, and handles any disciplinary action against the nurse. Even for people initially applying for a nursing license, a background check will be conducted. Any criminal charge can lead to a Board Review before the nursing license will be approved.
If you are convicted of a crime or enter a plea in the courtroom, then a nurse must report the case to the Board of Nursing. In some cases, it is better to report the incident in advance, especially if you decide to seek out substance abuse counseling early in the case.
Being proactive often leads to the best results in these cases. Although a first DUI is unlikely to result in a nurse losing their license for a first or second offense outside of five years of any prior conviction or licensure issue, the Board of Nursing can impose certain requirements that require you to undergo an alcohol and drug evaluation and follow up treatment and random drug and alcohol testing.
By being proactive you can often shorten the period of supervision and get the case closed out more quickly. It is particularly important to be proactive if your nursing license records show any prior emergency actions, discipline cases or public complaints.
This article was last updated on Monday, August 20, 2018.