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Could a DUI put your professional license in danger?

Many know about the impact that a drunk driving charge can have on their life. They may face fines, jail time and even the loss of their driver’s license. However, some may not know that driving under the influence (DUI) charges can impact another license: their professional license. How might these charges impact your career?

How might a DUI impact your license?

Doctors, nurses, teachers, real estate agents, pilots and many other professionals must be licensed by a state licensing board in order to do business within the state. These licensing boards will generally be notified a short time after a conviction, and professionals who are currently licensed will likely be required to report that conviction to the board themselves.

After an investigation and administrative hearing, professionals may face a variety of different disciplinary actions as a result of a DUI conviction. For example, teachers in the state of California may receive a warning letter, be publicly warned, have their current license suspended or revoked or have their application for a license denied.

How can professionals protect their licensure?

If you are facing a DUI charge, it can be important to work with a lawyer with the experience necessary to build a strong criminal defense. They can examine the particulars of your charge and create a legal strategy that protects your freedom and your profession.

If a previous conviction stands to impact your career, you may want to speak to an experienced attorney about expungement. California Business and Professions Code Section 480 (c) forbids licensing boards from holding a dismissed or expunged charge against you, and the expungement process could help you limit the impact of previous charges.

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