Getting a California RN License with a Criminal History: Misdemeanor - page 2

by cheethaj

25,825 Views | 66 Comments

Disclaimer: This topic is for informational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice. This is simply an account of my experiences with the California Board of Registered Nursing. Individual situations will... Read More


  1. 0
    Hi jmira,

    I am sorry about the late response; I've been out of country. I gave a purpose statement then I mixed the facts about my convictions with lessons learned for each one. Finally, I wrapped it up at the end. If you send me your e-mail then I can send you the actual letter that I wrote. I can't send it via private message because I haven't posted 15 times yet.

    John
  2. 0
    The California BON does indeed require letters of reference for all applications with a criminal record; I am not sure about other states. I am also applying for my Hawaii license by endorsement and because I already have my California license, they did not require letters of reference. I am not sure if it is just because I already have a license in California or if it is just the state of Hawaii policy, but Hawaii only requires court documents for convictions that have not been dismissed or expunged in the last 20 years and a letter explaining the circumstances regarding the convictions. That made things much easier but Hawaii is taking their sweet time sending me my license.
  3. 0
    I received deferred adjudication in Tx 10 years ago for a felony possession charge which was discharged in 2006. I've never been convicted, however it still shows on a background check and Tx law doesn't allow for expunction. I have worked in the medical field most of my life. I have gotten a determination from another state board in another medical profession that would allow me to sit for licensing, but have really been considering nursing. I'm fairly sure the Tx BON would grant me a declaratory order and I could get into a nursing program, however; my concern is with the clinical sites and whether they would let me do my clinicals? If anyone has any experience on this I'd really appreciate the feedback. Thanks.
  4. 0
    I had a DUI which was reduced to a Reckless Driving conviction. I am wanting to endorse to CA in a few months.
    Do the letters of reference need to be specifically in reference to the criminal record?
    If it was alcohol related, what else has to be completed?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated!
  5. 1
    Quote from blueorchid981
    Do the letters of reference need to be specifically in reference to the criminal record?
    According to the BON (I called), they said ideally it would be best to get someone who has known you since the time of arrest and can attest to your changes and efforts to get better, e.g., a counselor, AA sponsor, etc.

    Otherwise, you can also send letters from people who can attest to your character.
    cheethaj likes this.
  6. 0
    blueorchid981,

    I am unsure if all of these rules apply to people filing for licensure by endorsement, but I assume they are because CA if pretty strict. How long ago did you get the DUI and why was it reduced to reckless driving? As for additional documentation, you will need to ask for the arresting department to include your blood alchol level on your arrest report. As db2xs said, you should ideally get letters from people that know about the incident and can attest to your changes. If you can find an AA counceler or a probation officer willing to write you a letter then I think that would give you the best chances of getting your license. When I got my letters from my supervisor and the trauma nurse, I told them about the incedent just prior to them writing the letter. They were both more than willing to write the letter because they liked my work ethic and they didn't want to see me not get my nursing license because of a prior conviciton. Best of luck to you and keep up the hard work.
  7. 0
    txbluebonnett,

    This reply does not constitue legal advice, but I took a quick look at some TX law stuff. What I gathered is that you received deferred adjudication so that you could avoid some of the consiquences of doing a straight probation. You finished your probationary period in 2006 and you do not qualify for expunction. What I did see is that you can file for a order of nondisclosure 5 years after discharge from deferred adjudication and it looks like a felony possession charge should apply because it is not on the list of exceptions that I see. I'm not sure if you have already tried this, but if you haven't then it looks like a good option for you. Here is a link to the website. > Office of Criminal District Attorney - Hidalgo County, Texas - Petitions for Non-Disclosure

    Good luck and keep up the hard work.
  8. 0
    Quote from cheethaj
    txbluebonnett,

    This reply does not constitue legal advice, but I took a quick look at some TX law stuff. What I gathered is that you received deferred adjudication so that you could avoid some of the consiquences of doing a straight probation. You finished your probationary period in 2006 and you do not qualify for expunction. What I did see is that you can file for a order of nondisclosure 5 years after discharge from deferred adjudication and it looks like a felony possession charge should apply because it is not on the list of exceptions that I see. I'm not sure if you have already tried this, but if you haven't then it looks like a good option for you. Here is a link to the website. > Office of Criminal District Attorney - Hidalgo County, Texas - Petitions for Non-Disclosure

    Good luck and keep up the hard work.
    Thank you for the reply. Yes, I am eligible to file a petition for non-disclosure and that would seal my record from the general public. However, state licensing agencies, medical entities, and several others would still have access to the original record. I would probably need to speak with the nursing program directors in my area to see if their clinical sites would accept me. I am just curious if anyone else here has been in this situation and if they were able to complete their clinicals?
  9. 0
    Cheethaj, thank you for all your hard work doing this. Hopefully you can help me a bit here.

    I am 48 yrs old, will be 49 in October. When i was 18 i was married to a very abusive mad (he spent 25 yrs in prison for raping a woman and molesting a little girl ) He had been beating me often, but when you called the police back then they told you to work it out and would just leave you there...not good. Anyway one day he had "found" a debit card and used it while i was in the car. At that point I didn't care what he did anymore (ofcourse i had no ideal he was a rapist!!! or a child molester!!) I wouldn't have argued with him about the time of day. Anyway, he was arrested for the rape a few days later. About a month after that a policeman came to my door with photos that included me standing at the ATM. They said i had to turn myself in. I admitted to knowing about it and being there and was charged with theft by credit card, which was a felony. They subsequently took pity on me and reduced it to a misdemeanor but it still says "theft by credit card". I recieved 1 yrs probation. About 2 yrs later at age 20 i got caught shoplifting. I'm very very embarrassed by all of this btw, to even say it in this forum is hard for me. I'm most embarassed by the shoplifting. I was 20, old enough, and not good at it lol, i stole a 3 dollar skirt for my baby that was marked down on clearance. I was ticketed, and paid a fine, never went to court, nothing really happened. I have paid for my records in TX (where you can pay 2.00 and look on line) it shows my first conviction and my mug shot, but nothing about the shoplifting. In texas they tried to deny my licensure when i was 31 yrs old because of moral turpitude. I had to take the state board to court. I won but they put my license on restrictions in that I had to work in a Drs office x3 yrs and go to counseling. At that time i felt it was a life time ago, but i did those things. My new employer is requiring me to get a Cali license. I'm scared to death. I told them about the "theft" misdemeanor when i was 18, they didn't ask for details. I did not tell them about the shoplifting issue, and to be honest I probably didn't mention the stipulations on my license at the time because most employers ask if your license has ever be put under stipulations for MISCONDUCT. I have never been in trouble with my license only put on stipulation when i first obtained it, but not for any misconduct. Anyway...These things were 30 yrs ago! I can not get my papers they are asking for. I live very far away from the place it all happened, and it's atleast an 8 hour drive, then I'd have to hope they can give it to me. Letters??? I have no one who really knows about this stuff left in my life, and i've only been at my job for 3 months. Now you have me nervous about a traffic ticket I recently went to court for. It was me going thru a school zone on the way to a work class. I worked nights so was unfamiliar with a church that is also a school. I had taken a detour that day and evidently was going the regular speedlimit which was about 20 miles over the speed limit for the zone. ugh. I cried like a baby! That ticket was 301.00 (ofcourse) and it was reduced to 201.00 in court. I got deferred adjudication. Would this count?? Also i know back when it just became law to have insurance on your auto, i got a no insurance ticket somewhere, like 30 yrs ago..but don't remember how much it was.

    Question is, if this stuff is THAT old, im talking wayyy before computers, then how do i get them? And what if i can not get them?? Also the cali site says i have to contact the department of justice. Is that the US DOJ or the Texas DOJ?? Texas DOJ doesn't require your prints, and its an internet search for pay.

    Any advise would be sooo helpful. I have degenerative arthritis and am working from home doing triage for places like Humana and such, because I have trouble standing for long periods of time. I can not lose this job. It is a REQUIREMENT that i get a cali license asap. I'm so lost I don't know what to do. Esp with the shoplifting charge. I have no idea if it was ever filed, as back then you got tickets for stupid stuff like that (3.00 items) i never went to jail ever. If it's not there, should i ignore it, because i may never find any documentation on that. Again that was before computers, all stuff was on paper back then!
  10. 0
    Txbluebonnet, get some good advise. The Tx BON really fought me on 2 misdemeanors, and honestly back then no one ever told on themselves, i was being honest (again before fingerprinting became in). I was held up on my license for 3 yrs and then spent 3 yrs forced into counseling for something I had already had a years worth of counseling for (the abuse) and force to work in clinic only setting for 3 yrs. It is because of me that they now say they look at "age of the applicant at time of crime" because back then they didnt care if it was 30 yrs ago or 3 days ago, you were 19 or 59. I think, hope, they do look at "juvenile indiscretion"...which is what they call it now. I got a letter from my lawyer stating the judge who heard my case threw that to the board members to consider next time they wanted to drag "a good little girl thru hell" ..quote.


Top