If you have recently been arrested for a DUI, you are probably already aware that your career is now on the line. States have different laws and penalties for DUIs, as does each state’s Board of Nursing (BON.) If you are a nurse working in Texas, you need to know about DUIs and what you need to do to save your job.
The Details of Your Arrest Matter
There are three important details that matter with your arrest. First, was there an accident involved? Did you crash into any property or another driver? Second, is this your first DUI, or have you had one before? Finally, what was your blood alcohol content (BAC)? If it’s above .16%, this is a big problem.
If your DUI involved an accident, this could be considered a violation of the Nurse Practice Act because now you can be accused of using alcohol to the point that you became a danger to yourself and others.
If this is your first DUI, you can hopefully negotiate for the lesser “Wet Reckless” charge. It’s a less severe charge than a DUI conviction, and your nursing license is at less risk of being taken away. However, if this is your second DUI, it will be harder to negotiate down to this charge.
Now, if your BAC is above .16%, there’s less chance of negotiating your DUI down to Wet and Reckless. At .16%, you are two times the legal limit.
What’s at Stake
First, your nursing license is the most significant thing at stake for a Texas nurse arrested for a DUI. You can expect the Texas Board of Nursing (BON) to file Formal Charges against your license to practice, and they don’t have to wait until a conviction to file their accusation against you.
Unlike some states, even if you get your charge reduced to a Wet and Reckless, it’s still a cause for the BON to take disciplinary action. And regardless of the charge, if you don’t report it to the BON in a timely manner, they can also charge you with unprofessional conduct. It’s a big deal. Your career has a lot at stake right now, and you need legal representation to help ensure you make the right moves at every step of the process.
Some free legal advice for you is this – never agree to surrender your license and never agree to enter an intervention program. This is why you need legal representation. Both options are costly both financially and for your career. Neither will be as simple as they seem.
You Need an Attorney, Maybe Even Two
This isn’t just about your driver’s license. You need lawyers who understand that a DUI will affect your RN license. This is why you want a DUI attorney and an RN License Defense Attorney. Few law firms can provide both, but RN Guardian can.
Don’t Think it Can’t Happen to You
Last year, Texas was ranked as the fourth worst state for drunk driving. All it takes is one extra drink to put you over the limit. The maximum fine is $2,000, up to 180 days in jail, and for a Texas nurse, the loss of your nursing license. You’ve probably heard that self-representation is a bad idea, and that’s a saying for a reason. Given everything that is at stake here, you need legal representation.
Don’t Blow Off Reporting It
Another reason you want legal representation right away is that you must self-report this charge to the Board of Nursing. They will find out, and if they find out from a source other than you, you could also face unprofessional conduct charges. But we don’t recommend actually doing it yourself. It’s best to have an attorney report it on your behalf. This will give you the best chance of keeping your license because an attorney can help keep you from incriminating yourself further.
Get Legal Help Now
No doubt, you are very anxious about what lies ahead. RN Guardian offers Texas registered nurses and licensed vocational nurses the defense they need to keep their licenses. Our attorneys are vetted experts who have already won thousands of similar cases. When you choose RN Guardian, you are selecting an attorney dedicated to helping you keep your career on track.