Connecticut Pharmacist License Defense

You've worked hard to earn your pharmacist license in Connecticut. Whether you are licensed only in Connecticut or have a reciprocal license here based on your license from another state, It's taken years of education, extensive experience working as a pharmacist intern, and studying for and passing required exams such as the challenging North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination (NAPLEX) as well as the Multi-State Pharmacy Jurisprudence Examination (MPJE) for you to be able to receive your pharmacist license in this state. That's why if you learn that the Connecticut Commission of Pharmacy is investigating you for alleged misconduct, you need to take it extremely seriously. The Lento Law Firm Professional License Defense Team is here to help you understand the allegations against you, and to protect your rights through the investigation and any disciplinary process that may result.

Call us today at 888.535.3686 or schedule a confidential consultation with one of our experienced professional license defense attorneys to learn how we can help protect your license, your reputation, and your career.

Ways the Connecticut Commission of Pharmacy Can Discipline Pharmacists

Pharmacist licenses in Connecticut are issued by the Department of Consumer Protection's Commission of Pharmacy. The Commission works together with the DCP's Drug Control Division, and depending on the type of complaint that's filed, both may work together to investigate and resolve the matter.

When a pharmacist is found to have violated Connecticut's Pharmacy Practice Act or another of the laws and regulations that apply to pharmacists, the Commission can impose a number of different types of discipline on the pharmacist. Discipline can include:

  • A reprimand or censure, which typically has no practical effect on the pharmacist's license but may be disclosed to the public.
  • A monetary penalty, typically in the form of a fine.
  • A requirement that the pharmacist take specific remedial or corrective action. Often this includes taking and passing specific courses or providing periodic reports to the Commission.
  • Probation, which can include a requirement that the pharmacist completes certain requirements within a specified period of time or risk license suspension.
  • Suspension of the pharmacist's license for a specified period of time. This may be combined with other types of discipline, such as a fine or specified remedial or corrective action.
  • Revocation of the license is obviously the most serious consequence.

What Standards Does Connecticut Expect Pharmacists to Uphold?

Pharmacists in Connecticut are expected to meet standards and requirements set by state and federal law. These cover a wide range of topics related to the practice of preparing and dispensing medication as well as operating a licensed pharmacy in the state. The state's Pharmacy Practice Act contains only some of these, including the following:

Pharmacists are also expected to meet a number of other food, drug, and pharmacy operation requirements set by the state, including those related to the sale of hypodermic needles and syringes, dispensing of adulterated or misbranded drugs, labeling of drugs, proper handling of prescriptions and prescription forms, and a wide range of other topics.

Grounds for Pharmacist Discipline in Connecticut

The Commissioner of Connecticut's Commission of Pharmacy can discipline a pharmacist for a number of reasons, including:

  • Providing any false information to the Department of Consumer Protection
  • Being convicted of a federal or state crime relating to drugs
  • Being disciplined as a pharmacist by another state or the federal government
  • Having their pharmacy license denied or revoked by any other jurisdiction
  • Making false or deceitful statements to the Commission of Pharmacy
  • Being incompetent or negligent in their work as a pharmacist
  • Violating any state or federal law relating to “drugs, devices or the practice of pharmacy”
  • Illegally possessing, diverting, selling, or dispensing drugs
  • Abusing drugs or alcohol
  • Failing to keep the pharmacy in a “clean, orderly and sanitary condition
  • Splitting fees with a prescribing practitioner or facility
  • Having exclusive ties to a prescribing practitioner or facility

These grounds are not exclusive, and the Commission of Pharmacy can investigate and discipline a licensed pharmacist for other matters as well. The experienced attorneys at the Lento Law Firm Professional License Defense Team understand the many rules and regulations that pharmacists in Connecticut are expected to follow, as well as the ones relating to disciplinary investigations and proceedings. We are here to help protect your rights if you've been accused of misconduct and are being investigated by the Commission.

Don't Assume the Truth Will Protect You From Pharmacist License Disciplinary Sanctions in Connecticut

At the Lento Law Firm Professional License Defense Team, we've seen it time and time again – a licensed professional such as a pharmacist is accused of misconduct, and their first reaction is to try to reach out to the investigator or to the licensing body to try to “set the record straight” and “get to the bottom” of the situation. While it makes sense to want to bring a misconduct investigation to a speedy and complete end, this approach rarely works. In some cases, it can make the situation more difficult.

When the Commission of Pharmacy is investigating a misconduct complaint, it's assigned to an investigator who has a job to do. Trying to shortcut the process almost never works. The investigator will continue with the process of interviewing relevant witnesses – such as the person who filed the complaint, the pharmacist the complaint is filed against, and others – and will also gather whatever documents they believe might help. Trying to bring that process to a halt can be misconstrued as trying to obstruct it. And in some cases, if the investigator doesn't fully understand you, it can lead to a prolonged investigation and more issues to resolve.

The Lento Law Firm Professional License Defense Team knows when it's appropriate to reach out to the investigator assigned by the Commission of Pharmacy to your matter. We will help make sure that any information you have about the situation is relevant to the issues being investigated,, that it's delivered in a clear way, that the investigator understands what the relevance is, and that your situation is not made more difficult as a result.

The Disciplinary Process for Pharmacist Licensing Issues in Connecticut

When a complaint is filed against a licensed pharmacist, the Commission of Pharmacy will typically assign it to an investigator. Typically, the investigator will be part of the Commission's Drug Control Division, which is also responsible for inspecting licensed pharmacies across the state. While many investigations relate to alleged misuse of drugs by pharmacists, the Drug Control Division will also investigate other complaints as well, such as those alleging that the wrong medication was dispensed by the pharmacist.

The investigation process can take days, weeks, or even months depending on the situation. It can include the following:

  • Interviews with the person filing the complaint
  • Interviews with the pharmacist named in the complaint
  • Interviews with others who may have information about the matter raised in the complaint, such as co-workers, the person who wrote the prescription, and the supplier or manufacturer of the medication involved
  • Site visits to the pharmacy involved
  • Review of documentation relating to the incident, including where appropriate a review of the actual prescription received by the pharmacist named in the complaint
  • In cases where the wrong drug was dispensed, a physical examination of where the drugs are located in the pharmacy's storage area

Many of these steps will apply whether the complaint relates to the wrong medicine being dispensed by the pharmacist, or if it claims the pharmacist may be responsible for diverting drugs from the pharmacy illegally. In diversion cases, the investigator may also conduct an audit of the pharmacy to determine whether there is a systemic problem with missing or diverted drugs.

When the investigation is complete, the investigator will prepare a report for the Department of Consumer Affairs Legal Office. The Legal Office will review the report and determine whether it supports disciplinary action against the pharmacist.

In many cases, the Commission of Pharmacy may attempt to resolve the matter through a negotiated settlement before bringing formal disciplinary proceedings. A commission representative will contact the pharmacist and propose a resolution that's based on the findings of the investigation. In these situations, the outcome may be subject to negotiation, and working with an experienced attorney from the Lento Law Firm Professional License Defense Team can make all the difference between an outcome that adversely affects your ability to practice and one that results in relatively minor or even no discipline. In any case, all settlements must then be approved by the full Commission of Pharmacy before they are effective.

If you don't agree to settle a disciplinary matter, or if the Commission of Pharmacy declines to make a settlement offer, the matter will proceed to a hearing. As part of this process, you will receive a notice that describes in detail the “facts or conduct” that the commission is alleging you are responsible for that support the type of discipline the commission proposes to impose on you. The notice may ask you to attend an informal “compliance conference,” where you can respond to and discuss the allegations and proposed discipline.

When the disciplinary matter isn't resolved at a compliance conference, it will likely proceed to a formal hearing as a “contested case.” The commission will issue a formal complaint, and you will be expected to file a formal response to that complaint by a certain time. The matter will then hearing will in many ways be like a court proceeding. Both you and the commission will have a chance to produce evidence and witnesses, cross-examine the other side's witnesses, make motions, and provide oral arguments. If not settled during the course of the hearing, a final decision will be issued that will be in writing or, if made at the time of the hearing, can be read into the record.

Decisions in contested cases can be appealed. Appeals are filed with a court that has jurisdiction based on where the pharmacist lives or, if the pharmacist lives outside of the state, with the court located in the judicial district of New Britain, Connecticut.

This entire, difficult, time-consuming process is much easier to navigate and face if you have an experienced professional license defense attorney as part of your team. The Lento Law Firm Professional License Defense Team understands what you're going through, and our attorneys are ready to provide you with the information and support you need during license misconduct investigations, negotiations, and hearings. We will defend you, protect your rights, and make sure you have a strong and aggressive defense to the allegations against you.

What Happens if You Are Disciplined by the Connecticut Commission of Pharmacy?

As noted above, there are any number of ways that the Commission of Pharmacy can discipline you. The commission is required to publish reports of license discipline four times a year, and so in addition to any professional consequences that come from the commission's disciplinary actions, the fact that you were disciplined will be available to the public.

In situations where your license is suspended or revoked, of course, you will not be able to earn a living as a pharmacist until the suspension is lifted or, in the case of a revocation, you are able to reapply and your application is accepted despite your past disciplinary history.

How the Lento Law Firm Professional License Defense Team Can Help

The Lento Law Firm Professional License Defense Team has helped licensed professionals across the country, including pharmacists in Connecticut, protect their licenses, their reputations, and their livelihoods when misconduct allegations have been made against them. Whether you're located in New Haven, Cos Cob, Richfield, Hartford, or another part of the state –or if you're an out-of-state pharmacist licensed in Connecticut – if you are facing a disciplinary investigation, have received a notice of a proposed disciplinary action, are proceeding to a disciplinary hearing, or have had a disciplinary penalty imposed, contact us. Our experienced attorneys understand pharmacist licensing rules and disciplinary procedures. We'll review your situation with you, advise you of your rights, and will aggressively and fairly defend you.

Call the Lento Law Firm Professional License Defense Team today at 888.535.3686 or schedule a confidential consultation with one of our experienced attorneys to learn more about how we can help. You've worked hard to earn your pharmacist license; let us help you protect it!


Attorney Joseph D. Lento and the Lento Law Firm are committed to answering your questions about Physician License Defense, Nursing License Defense, Pharmacist License Defense, Psychologist and Psychiatrist License Defense, Dental License Defense, Chiropractic License Defense, Real Estate License Defense, Professional Counseling License Defense, and Other Professional Licenses law issues nationwide.
The Lento Law Firm will gladly discuss your case with you at your convenience. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.

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