Every professional license defense case is unique because every professional is unique. But if license defense has patterns, one of those patterns is that the common issues revolve around the professional's performance within the field. Those professional issues can vary from substandard clinical work to failing to attend to duties or poor relationships with patients, clients, or colleagues. But professional license defense tends to involve professional issues. Yet, in some cases, criminal charges or allegations of criminal wrongs complicate the license defense. The professional issues may be much more important than the criminal issues from the professional's standpoint. But cases with both professional and criminal issues need special treatment. They also need skilled and experienced license defense attorney representation. Crime allegations can complicate license defense, whether or not the criminal allegations are especially serious.
The Factors Crime Allegations Inject
Professional issues raise ordinary questions over the standard of care, professional norms, customs, competence, schedules, assignments, supervision, and support staff. None of those professional factors, though, ordinarily implicate criminal misconduct. Criminal charges or allegations of criminal wrongs inject several wholly different and greatly challenging factors into professional license defense.
First, criminal charges change and raise the professional's stakes in the mixed professional and criminal proceedings. The license itself is no longer the only nor even necessarily the biggest question. The professional's freedom from crippling criminal conviction and incarceration may be the biggest question.
Second, criminal charges involve a whole additional set of procedures. Professional license proceedings have a reasonably standard investigatory and adjudicatory process. That process is more administrative than judicial and more professional than adversarial. The criminal court process is the opposite, entirely rather than administrative and highly adversarial rather than professional.
Criminal charges or allegations also tend to require additional evidence, especially from consulting and forensic experts, meaning that prosecutors may find it harder to convict. Criminal issues implicate the professional's criminal misconduct, requiring hard-to-find reliable and detailed evidence of what the professional did or did not do that would constitute the charged crime. Criminal evidence may come from fingerprint experts, computer forensics experts, toxicologists, medical examiners, and other expert witnesses, but can be difficult to acquire, making the criminal charges difficult to prove. By contrast, professional issues tend to require evidence of the professional's standard of care and the professional's performance within or outside of that standard. That evidence is generally readily available from expert witnesses and thus easy for disciplinary officials to prove, making the professional misconduct charges a more significant risk than criminal charges in many cases. Professional issues implicate the professional's knowledge, care, and general fitness, addressed through professional testimony and exhibits tending to prove what professionals customarily do to maintain their competence and fitness.
Elevated Proof Standard
Finally, criminal charges elevate the proof standard. Prosecutors must prove criminal charges beyond a reasonable doubt. A criminal charge's much higher proof standard generally means a much harder fight over much smaller fact issues, making criminal charges harder to prove and thus less of a risk. By contrast, licensing officials must generally prove their disciplinary charges only by a preponderance of the evidence or, at most, clear and convincing evidence. Those lower standards of proof mean that disciplinary officials can more readily prove professional misconduct charges, creating greater enforcement risks.
License Defense Attorney Available
Professional license defense attorney Joseph D. Lento has the extensive experience and special skills for your license proceeding's best outcome, even when complicated by criminal charges or allegations. Attorney Lento can do more than represent you on routine professional license issues. Attorney Lento has the criminal defense experience to understand how criminal issues can complicate your most significant license defense. Attorney Lento is also licensed to practice law in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New York for your vigorous criminal defense in the courts of those states, even though your license defense may be by far your most important interest. Recognize the true cost of losing your professional license. Hire the best available license defense attorney and defense team now for dual professional and criminal defense in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, or New York, or for defense of professional license proceedings nationwide involving criminal allegations. Call 888.535.3686 or go online now.