1. Dismiss Notice
  2. Download free Tapatalk for iPhone or Tapatalk for Android for your phone and follow the SDN forums with push notifications.
    Dismiss Notice
  3. Hey Texans—join us for a DFW meetup! Click here to learn more.
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice

Interview Feedback: Visit Interview Feedback to view and submit interview information.

Interviewing Masterclass: Free masterclass on interviewing from SDN and Medical College of Georgia

Applying to Med School-Criminal Record- Is it checked?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by AmberE, May 1, 2004.

  1. AmberE

    AmberE Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2004
    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    1
    Anyone who has been through the process of applying to med school and who knows about this topic, please inform me. Thanks!
     
  2. Note: SDN Members do not see this ad.

  3. Mr. Obsessive

    Mr. Obsessive Mr. Obsessive
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2003
    Messages:
    61
    Likes Received:
    0
    Yes. At the end of the AMCAS application, a qestion specifically asks about criminal records.
     
  4. AmberE

    AmberE Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2004
    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    1
    What does the question ask specificaly? And do they do a background check? And if so, when in the process? I am sure you are all wondering why I am so worried about the criminal background check, well to anwser your question my husband was convicted of a DUI 6 years ago. Long story but since then he as changed drastically. This is when his male hormones were out of control. We all make mistakes but I hope it doesn't come at a high price. I hope my husband does not get rejected at all the schools even thought it was a long time ago and his stats and EC's volunteering is outstanding. Any more info would be appreciated. Thanks!
    Amber
     
  5. Alexander99

    Alexander99 Ghetto Fabulous
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2003
    Messages:
    2,361
    Likes Received:
    0
    During one of my interviews, I stayed with a student host. One of his roommates had a similar problem (he stole a stop sign freshman year.) From what I understand, what he had was a misdemeanor offense. Everytime an application (including AMCAS) says, "Have you ever been convinced of a CRIMINAL offense," he had to answer yes and explain. If it specifically said, "Have you ever been convicted of a FELONY," he didn't have to put yes (cause he was convicted of a lesser offense.)

    The bottom line is, if it's still on his record, he has to be honest about it. If he lies about it, and even if he gets in because a school doesn't bother doing a background check (which several schools do), they can rescind his acceptance, kick him out of school, or even take away his degree post graduation if they find out he lied (they are that serious.)
     
  6. Alexander99

    Alexander99 Ghetto Fabulous
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2003
    Messages:
    2,361
    Likes Received:
    0
    Oh. And a word of advice. I'm not sure if he's the one that gave you the "hormones" excuse for his behavior but if he is able to make it to his interviews and they ask him about it, tell him not to use that reason. I can guarantee you if he responds, "It wasn't really my fault--my hormones made me do it," they won't let him in.
     
  7. OnMyWayThere

    OnMyWayThere OMS-III
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2003
    Messages:
    2,023
    Likes Received:
    2

    Check your PM. He will be fine :)
     
  8. Wednesday

    Wednesday Senior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2001
    Messages:
    684
    Likes Received:
    9
    Status:
    Attending Physician
    Hi,

    I'm not well versed in what is and isn't a felony, but if you do have a felony record some states won't grant you a lisence to practice. I would assume that medical schools in these states wouldn't take people with a felony for that reason.
     
  9. Alexander99

    Alexander99 Ghetto Fabulous
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2003
    Messages:
    2,361
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'm pretty sure a DUI is a felony (you can go to jail for it.)
     
  10. vhawk

    vhawk 2K Member
    Physician Gold Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2004
    Messages:
    11,534
    Likes Received:
    5,349
    Status:
    Attending Physician
    What if your violation wasnt with the law, but rather just with your school? I got in trouble for being in a dorm room with alchohol, and had to pay like a 50 dollar fine, but no legal action was taken. Is this something that needs to be answered "Yes" to on the AMCAS?
     
  11. Alexander99

    Alexander99 Ghetto Fabulous
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2003
    Messages:
    2,361
    Likes Received:
    0
    Heh. I don't think so. Isn't that kind of like asking, "What if I got grounded by my mom?" If it's just through your school, it's not a criminal offense (the law--e.g. the police/courts--were never involved.)
     
  12. Xega

    Xega Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2003
    Messages:
    239
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    Not sure on how AMCAS deals with that one, but my undergrad school asks about this before they will do a committe letter for you and even gets a report about you from the Dean's office to verify this.
     
  13. vhawk

    vhawk 2K Member
    Physician Gold Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2004
    Messages:
    11,534
    Likes Received:
    5,349
    Status:
    Attending Physician
    Yeah, my school doesnt have a pre-med committee to write letters, so my LORs will all be close personal friends in facult and research, so they wont be mentioning it. I dont think it shows up on my 'scripts either, so I didn't think it was important. Just checking.
     
  14. OnMyWayThere

    OnMyWayThere OMS-III
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2003
    Messages:
    2,023
    Likes Received:
    2


    Absolutely not true. And just because you can go to jail for something doesn't define a felony.

    DUI's become a felony when someone is injured.
     
  15. AmberE

    AmberE Member
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2004
    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    1
    Yes he is right. Here's what I found about a DUI:


    Is a DUI a Felony?
    QUESTION:


    Is a conviction for Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol (DUI) a felony?

    ANSWER:

    A first-time DUI, (or, in some states, "DWI" -- short for "driving while intoxicated") is normally charged as a misdemeanor, not a felony. But if someone was injured as a result of the drunken driving, some states (including your home state of Illinois) will raise the charge to a felony. (And if the victim dies, Illinois may charge the driver with reckless homicide.) Also, in a number of states, a DUI will be raised to a felony if it is the driver's second, third, or even fourth DUI offense. Your state, Illinois, falls right in the middle -- Illinois will charge a third DUI as a felony.

    "Misdemeanor" and "felony" are emotionally charged words, but what do they really mean? Whether a conviction ends up as a misdemeanor or a felony depends on the type and length of the punishment for the crime. Misdemeanors carry the possibility of incarceration in the county or local jail for one year or less; felonies usually result in a state prison term of more than a year.
     
  16. Alexander99

    Alexander99 Ghetto Fabulous
    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2003
    Messages:
    2,361
    Likes Received:
    0
    I stand corrected. I guess drinking and driving really isn't that big of a deal afterall. And all those times I used a designated driver. . . :)
     
  17. Realest

    Realest Rowdy Chik
    5+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2004
    Messages:
    141
    Likes Received:
    2
    Actually, the AMCAS does ask for you to report if you have been subject to any institutional action by the university. If it is on record with the JA or anything like that, you should report it. I think it's better to let them know ahead of time (try putting a positive spin on the situation - maybe talk about what you have learned from such an experience) than to falsify information. Even if they find out after you have already completed a couple of years, you never know what sort of action they may take (kicking you out?!) and you don't want to have wasted all that time and energy. Good luck.
     
  18. synapse lapse

    synapse lapse tokyo robotic
    15+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2003
    Messages:
    1,671
    Likes Received:
    2
    Status:
    Attending Physician
    I don't think med schools care too much about minor crimes. A DUI maybe as it speaks to character, but as far as stealing a stop sign it is obviusly just a childich parnk. I had a silly arrest on my record (don't ask, you wouldn't believe if I told you ), and I still go into my Ugrad with it on there as misdemeanor. I think adcoms know that not everyone is a criminal that has been convicted of a crime, don't forget they were all once Ugrads as well and I'm sure most had their share of pranks/minor criminal behavior. It's not really a huge deal if the crime was silly.
     
  19. bigbassinbob

    bigbassinbob Senior Member
    5+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2004
    Messages:
    382
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Medical Student
    A little trouble with the law never hurt anyone... or in any case it didn't if they learned their lesson. I also have a stupid arrest for misbehaving when I was in high school, and during one of my interviews I was explaining it (because you do have to mark it on your applications) and my interviewer told me not to worry about it at all because everyone makes mistakes. So yeah your husband should be fine.
     
  20. one basketball plpayer friend of mine got a DUI his freshmen yr. i think he had to explain what happened and wht he learnt from the experience. He just got accepted to med school with a 30 on his MCAT. just be able to explain what happened never fail to mention what you learnt from it
     
  21. Mutterkuchen

    Mutterkuchen Senior Member
    15+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2001
    Messages:
    804
    Likes Received:
    3
    Just don't lie about this stuff. Anything that involves the criminal justice system is available to many people in many states. You'll probably be OK if you tell the truth, but its the lies that get you into trouble.
     
  22. greggth

    greggth Senior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2003
    Messages:
    258
    Likes Received:
    1
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    I had 2 misdemeanors from 13 years ago when I was about 20 years old. They were minor ones though, not major ones like DUI. I was completely open and honest about them. I was accepted to 2 med schools and waitlisted at several for next year.
     
  23. rformd_student

    rformd_student Junior Member
    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2004
    Messages:
    20
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hi AmberE,
    I just read this thread b/c I'm dealing with a similar situation. I just wanted to suggest that you/your husband look into the possibility of getting an expungement order from the court. I'm from California and was able to get an expungement fairly easily. Mine was for a misdemeanor drug offense.

    An expungement allows you to legally state "no" when asked a question regarding criminal arrests. However, it does not stand up in certain situations such as when applying for licenses or govt jobs. The value of an expungement, even in those situations when they don't "hold up" is that even if you do have to answer "yes", you can include in your explanation that you were able to get an expungement. This can help your case because it shows that the court supported that your criminal record not be held against you.

    I can't say for sure what states have this statute, but I'd look into it. Unfortunately, criminal record will continue to come up throughout his career. I definitely agree with the previous posts, do NOT lie or withhold info when asked. It WILL come back to haunt him.

    Also, check out this thread in "General Residency Issues":
    prior misdemeanors and ERAS/NRMP
     

Share This Page