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State Licensure & Criminal History

Discussion in 'General Residency Issues' started by every1needsadoc, Apr 10, 2007.

  1. every1needsadoc

    every1needsadoc New Member
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    Hey guys, just filling out this mountain of paperwork to start in July, going through the state medical license application. They're asking about ever been arrested, charged, or convicted of crime. During undergrad & beginning of med-school I was arrested for misdeamor and I think charged, went to court, but never convicted, charges dropped.This was 5 & 6 years ago in two different states different from the state I'm going to do residency. Really not inclined to divulge this info to the state board and my program.
    Have recently obtained a finger-print clearance card in the state I'm in now for pedestrian work while going through match, etc so I figured these charges were not found, dissapeared, or just not a concern.
    Does anyone know how extensive the state board background check is ? or know of anyone ever in a similiar siti, and what happened to them ? Or of someone who got denied licensure because of some prior criminal history ?
    I know to be caught in this siti would be worse then to admit, I just really don't feel this info would be revealed.
     
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  3. Gem134

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    This is a third year student's opinion, but I would just say what you said. I think that no one wants to admit to a charge but to deny it would be ten times worse, and if they find out then you are in a way amount of trouble. I would also imagine that people might appreciate that you told the truth when you could just as well have lied.

    Just my 0.02.
     
  4. Tigger14

    Tigger14 Ready to move
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    It would probably be most helpful to talk to an attorney for advice. I would agree with gem134 though. If "charged" is in the list of things that have to be divulged, I would do it. Your charges may not preclude a license, but I can almost guarantee that lying and being caught at it will.
     
  5. c.bear

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    Did you do any VA rotations? If so, were you finger printed? And if so, was it greater than 3 months ago?

    If so, contact you dean of students to make sure the possible charge did not come up. Any VA you work at does an extensive federal background check.

    If not, contact a lawyer or divulge the details.
     
  6. every1needsadoc

    every1needsadoc New Member
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    No VA rotations c.bear, gonna see what the lawyer has to say......
     
  7. Amgen1

    Amgen1 New Member
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    call the municipal court of city/town/county where you were charged and have them pull your information. If they have no record of your offense, then get documentation saying such.

    Report all of this when you are applying for your license. If any background checks later in life are more thorough and find any "hidden" or "forgotten" information this can be relayed to the medical board of whatever state you are practicing in.

    any other state you go to is going to repeat background checks etc.

    it will bring up a red flag if they have documentation from another state licensing board that shows you never reported this

    lying on your application for you medical license results in suspension and a fine.

    not worth the risk
     
  8. medicineman1

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    I personally have a classmate who was denied license for 2 misdemeanors. In this case the board asked for police reports etc re the cases.

    Re fingerprinting- if you are ever arrested your fingerprints go the FBI, so if you have to be fingerprinted it will likely show up, if the fingerprints are being used in context of background check.
     
  9. razorback58

    razorback58 Resident
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    What were the misdemeanors for? Was it a drug charge?
     
  10. every1needsadoc

    every1needsadoc New Member
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    Medicineman, do you know if your colleague had been convicted of these misdemeanors or just charged ? My two charges were dropped.
    No drugs Razorback58, but would rather not say, petty 21 year old ****....
     
  11. medicineman1

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    alleged domestic violence- where there was no physical violence, clearly stated in police report.

    and a verbal assault 4th degree, against a cab driver. Cab driver claimed he had post traumatic stress and was trying to sue this guy and his family for hundreds of thousands.

    two pretty crazy stories but I know the guy well- bad choices in women and bad luck with the cabbie thing.

    one was dismissed, and the other is at the appeals court.

    The board read the police reports which read like a bad novel-bunch of trumpted up ****, and that was that. Both incidents were 2 years before the licensure denial.

    There is no margin for error in this rigid profession.
     
  12. f_w

    f_w 1K Member
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    Your plan falls under the 'lying to the goverment' category (ask Martha Stewart or Scooter Libby about that concept).

    I don't remember ever being asked about arrests and charges on medical license applications, just convictions, guilty or no-contest pleas.

    Indiana licensed a guy who had a conviction for attempted murder and kidnapping and spend 20 years in the slammer for it. So, with that as a baseline, some 20 year old misdemeanor charges that the DA apparently dropped are probably not going to a major dent into your medical career. You should be able to find a copy of the court order or charging sheet with the 'dismissed with prejudice' stamp on it.

    Lying to the medical board and getting caught with it, WILL put a major dent into your medical career.
     
  13. Apollyon

    Apollyon Screw the GST
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    Some states do ask about arrests.
     
  14. AutomaTron

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    I don't know why physicians don't stick up for themselves more. I mean who are on these boards? Are they our own people? If they are going to be taking some meaningless college kid crap and using tax payer money to make a huge issue out of it years and years later do we really want these types of people in a position where they can wreak all sorts of havoc and spend a lot of money without the use of any common sense just to justify their own salaries and bureaucratic existence?
     
  15. razorback58

    razorback58 Resident
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    I have a friend that took the misdeamnor instead of fighting it. His attorney said that he should just plead guilty instead of fighting it because it would cost so much to fight the charge. It was actually two charges. My friend had called his ex-girl friend and got very nasty over the phone because she had charged up some furniture under his name and taken many things from the house and left and moved in with another guy.

    She called the police after recording him and he was arrested for verbal abuse and threatening behavior. One of the charges were dropped but still showed up on the FBI file as open and unresolved. It has caused problems in getting a training license. He did get the license but had to go before the board etc..... Both of the charges showed up on the FBI report as an open case and not resolved even though it has been resolved for over 9 years.

    This is insane! I was reading many license requirements and some say if you have committed any crimes felony or misdeamnor against person's or a drug charge then you will be denied. Too many people are falsley arrested and convicted........look at what happened to the kids at Duke.

    If in doubt of what charges will be found run an FBI check on yourself before you apply. Many times when the charges are dropped or dismissed it can still show up on the report as still open. You should still be innocent until found guility in the US. But, the question they ask is "if you have ever been arrested?" So what? Could be a false arrest and it can show up anyway even if the charge was dropped.

    http://www.fbi.gov/hq/cjisd/fprequest.htm

    The above link will give you info on how to run your own report. It is a good idea because of ID theft and misinformation that could cause a world of hurt.
     
  16. dutchman

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    I don't know either. Actually I do: it is mainly because the profession is filled with self-righteous "quick to sell out" bastards. I understand why you would raise questions about a felon, but misdemeanor? Give me a break.
     
  17. ny skindoc

    ny skindoc Senior Member
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    In the recent past some state medical boards were so lax in checking up on applicants that physicians with serious criminal and malpractice histories were licensed in many localities and there were problems.There was tremendous pressure to track things better and now we have the current situation.
    Anyone with questions about reporting any kind of criminal record no matter how trivial to a state medical board should consult a lawyer experienced in such matters before proceeding.The cost of doing this is minimal compared with the cost of fixing a problem after the fact.
     
  18. 2TIM4:7

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    because the incidents occurred relatively close to each other and only 2 years before being denied licensure, i'm not surprised.

    i believe there's a 5 yr statute of limitations on things other than felonies. so this is probably one major reason besides the 2 incidents why he had trouble with the board.
     
  19. every1needsadoc

    every1needsadoc New Member
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    Oh yes, f_w, this state is asking about arrests, charges, and convictions. If just convictions we wouldn't be having this conversation. Taking Amgen1's advice and also talking with a lawyer. The general consensus seems to just divulge the info, just would hate to be denied licensure and then have to drop out of program. From what I hear and understand that won't be the case though because of the nature and dismissal of the charges. Nothing remotely close to drugs, domestic physical, verbal abuse, assault, or sinister misdemeanors.
     
  20. f_w

    f_w 1K Member
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    Some do, some don't.

    Ask around, possibly some attendings who are not part of your residency program and get a referral to an attorney who has dealt with your states medical board before (the other way to find such an attorney is to scour the minutes of the medical board meetings to find the names of attorneys who represent people in front of the medboard for licensure related matters). Then go and get a consultation with this attorney as to what you need to divulge and what not and if you have to, how to word the 'if you answered yes, explain on a separate sheet' treatise. One thing that never works is to minimize ones own misdeeds if the record seems to tell a different story. (If you had a DUI, state that you had made a mistake, consumed alcohol and drove a car. Don't go into a long story how your diabetes medicine interacted with the seasoning in the food to make you fail a field sobriety test and how miraculously your BAC crept up from inhaling the window-wiper fluid because your AC was broken.)

    You are getting free legal advice from an anonymous internet bulletin board. It is worth exactly as much as you paid for it.

    Anyway, if charges where dropped, it means you are innocent ! (just like the poor saps at Duke who got hung out to dry for attending a raucous frat party, they are innocent, right, nobody will ever care about this incident in their future, right ?)
     

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