It can happen to anyone. After a rough case or a long day rounding on patients, it is not uncommon for physicians to stop at the local watering hole and let off some steam before transitioning back into home life. An officer may see you pull out or think you missed a stop sign and pull you over. After smelling alcohol, they may move forward with allegations of drunk driving.
This is a nightmare for anyone, but if you are a medical doctor facing a DUI charge in Virginia, it is crucial to understand the full gravity of the situation. A DUI conviction can have far-reaching effects not just due to the possibility of criminal charges, but also on your medical license and career.
What should I do if I am stopped for drunk driving?
It helps to understand the basics of the law. Familiarize yourself with Virginia’s driving under the influence (DUI) laws. Penalties can include fines, license suspension, and even jail time.
In addition to learning about potential criminal penalties, a conviction can also have an impact on your professional license. It is likely the state board will investigate based on these charges. Depending on the findings, the investigation could lead to disciplinary action.
Does the Virginia Board of Medicine really follow through? Aren’t we short on medical professionals?
The Virginia Department of Health Professions has a long history of penalizing physicians for criminal infractions. Depending on the severity of the allegations, the repercussions can include a financial penalty, suspension, or even revocation of one’s medical license. The board holds physicians to a high standard. As such, it is important to take the situation seriously and reach out to legal counsel to start building a defense and exploring your legal options.
A DUI charge in Virginia is a serious matter for a medical doctor. It requires immediate action, legal guidance, and an understanding of the potential impact on your medical license. With a proactive approach, you can navigate this challenging situation and work towards preserving your career and reputation.