You worked hard to become a nurse in Florida, and you need to apply for and hold a valid nursing license if you wish to practice nursing within state lines. Yet, if you are currently facing a drunk driving, drug-related or another type of criminal charge, you may question whether it might impact your ability to secure the nursing license you need to practice as a nurse in Florida.
Per the Florida Board of Nursing, you have an obligation to report any criminal offenses received when applying for your Florida nursing license. You may do so via the Florida Health Care Complaint Portal, run by the Florida Department of Health.
What offenses you have to report
When you complete your nursing license application, you have to include information about any misdemeanor or felony offenses you received. This includes drug violations and violations for driving under the influence, among others. The only offenses you do not have an obligation to report on your license application are minor traffic offenses.
What determines if your offense disqualifies you
Whether your offense disqualifies you from becoming a nurse in Florida depends on several factors. Expect the Florida Board of Nursing to consider the severity and nature of your offense when making its decision. Expect the board, too, to consider whether you made any attempts to rehabilitate yourself in the time since your offense when deciding whether to approve or deny your nursing license application.
Your chance of securing a nursing license after receiving a criminal conviction improves if you show that you took certain steps to improve your lifestyle and avoid making similar missteps in the future.