Most registered nurses in California know that they must disclose criminal convictions and license discipline when they renew their license with the Board of Registered Nursing. Licenses are renewed every two years. In addition to this duty, nurses must also report to the BRN, within 30 days, any of the following:
1. The conviction of the licensee, including any verdict of guilty, or pleas of guilty or no contest, of any felony or misdemeanor.
2. Any disciplinary action taken by another licensing entity or authority of this state or of another state or an agency of the federal government or the US military.
(16 CCR section 1441)
Failing to report to the board within 30 days can be considered an act of unprofessional conduct that is cause for discipline. With this information in mind it is essential that an RN make a timely report to the BRN of any conviction or licensing discipline.
It is also important to think about the information that goes into any report (renewal application or mandatory report) sent to the nursing board because the board will consider the information in the report when deciding whether or not to subject a nurse to professional discipline. That statement will also be part of the evidence presented in administrative proceedings to discipline a nurse. It will be compared against other available evidence, including police reports, and any inconsistencies or inaccuracies in the report are likely to be considered an act of dishonesty.
If you or a loved one is a registered nurse in California with a conviction or license action to report to the BRN it is worth seeking legal guidance about how to report that conviction. An attorney experienced in professional licensing defense can assist you with reporting the situation to the board. That attorney can also help you begin to prepare for any potential license action against your nursing license.