A Criminal Conviction Brings Wide-Ranging Consequences to Illinois Professionals
An arrest and conviction for a crime in Illinois can bring serious financial consequences to the convicted. Yet if you’re arrested, you should be thinking about more than the amount of fines and court fees—you should consider the possible long-term consequences to your career and professional licenses. The fact that your livelihood may be on the line makes it all the more important that you hire a criminal defense attorney who will dedicate himself to defending you before a Chicago-area court.
The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) is the body governing professional licenses issued in the state of Illinois. When you are convicted of a crime, even if the conviction occurred outside of Illinois, you are obligated to report this fact to the IDFPR within a certain time period after the conviction. The IDFPR will then conduct their own investigation into the incident to determine whether to temporarily or permanently suspend your license. Certain convictions will result in the mandatory suspension or revocation of a license, but others may have avoidable consequences, especially if you are represented by an attorney who can persuade the IDFPR that suspending your license would be inappropriate under the circumstances of your case.
While you may assume that only professionals in fields like medicine or psychology would be subject to discipline for a conviction, the IDFPR will even take disciplinary action when licensed professionals in fields such as architecture, landscape design, cosmetology, or structural engineering are convicted of crimes. That said, certain professions maintain even more strict standards than others regarding the sort of conviction that will bar that person from continuing to work in a given field or cause the loss of a professional license. For example, those licensed in Illinois to be nurses, doctors, pharmacy technicians, or massage therapists may suffer a suspension of their professional license after even a DUI conviction, depending on the circumstances of the offense. Convictions for the possession of substances can come with especially high penalties. Federal agents or officers can also face penalties for a DUI conviction, and those holding a pilot’s license will have to report any administrative action taken, including an arrest or a license suspension for failure to take a breath test, to the Federal Aviation Administration.
If you’ve been arrested in Chicago and are facing charges at the Markham or Bridgeview courthouse or throughout Cook County, don’t jeopardize your ability to practice your profession by failing to hire a dedicated and zealous defender. Contact Homewood criminal defense attorney John Fairman for a consultation on your case, at 708-799-4848 (Homewood), or 708-960-4806 (Oak Lawn).