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Following your dreams and becoming a pharmacist takes many years. It also requires many sacrifices along the way, whether its missing family gatherings or not seeing your kids for a few days at a time when a big exam is approaching. It requires internships, a significant work ethic, and many years of training. It’s also expensive to pay for the classes and exams required to become a pharmacist. It’s a job many love, but many fear. The Board of Pharmacy has mandated so many rules, regulations, and requirements for pharmacists that many are fearful they might lose their license at the drop of a hat. Working so long and so hard to procure a successful, comfortable future can be taken from a pharmacist in virtually no time at all.
Pharmacist license defense attorneys know the ins and outs of pharmacy law, and they know how to keep their clients in business. If your business is threatened because your license is threatened, it’s imperative to contact an experienced attorney right away. Defending pharmacists and other healthcare professionals is what attorneys do, and they do it well.
License Loss and Suspension
The smallest inconsistency or mistake can cost a pharmacist their license in Austin. Texas law states anyone can lose their pharmacist license for any of the following reasons:
– Professional misconduct
– Sexual misconduct
– Over-billing patients
– Healthcare fraud
– Drug use
– Drug dealing
– Alcohol abuse
– Improper prescription filling
– Failure to properly handle licensure matters
– Failed pharmacy inspections
– Criminal convictions
It’s clear that a pharmacist can lose his or her license even if an issue is not their own fault. A pharmacist who chooses to improperly fill prescriptions for patients knows they are putting their license on the line. A pharmacist who hires an administrative staff that makes mistakes in the billing department could end up on the receiving end of a complaint. That complaint could result in an investigation that could cost the pharmacist his license. Even if staff is unaware they are filing incorrect billing information or are simply negligent in double checking information they’re providing, the pharmacist risks it all.
When an investigation is opened into a pharmacist, a letter is sent to the pharmacist so they have a chance to respond and provide all the information requested in the investigation. Attorneys who work with license defense recommend pharmacists do not respond to this notice without legal assistance. The law is a very fine line between being helpful and harming one’s case, and attorneys are familiar with the laws regarding this type of information.
When a pharmacist is found guilty of violating laws, he or she is then provided a penalty. Depending on the type of laws violated, the seriousness of the violation, and numerous other factors, penalties range from minor to severe.
– Letter of reprimand
– License suspension
– License revocation
– Prison time
Even if a pharmacist is cleared of any wrongdoing, there might still be penalties for the pharmacist. If the office staff is not keeping adequate client records, prescription records, or they are over-billing clients or insurance companies, they can face fines, punishment, and even restitution. The state can shut down any pharmacy they find acting against the law in this manner until the situation is rectified.
Additionally, any crimes committed could be sent to the state for a trial, and some are considered a federal offense. If this occurs, license revocation becomes the least of the pharmacist’s issues. Prison time is a potential punishment for anyone who breaks the law in a criminal capacity, and it has the potential to be serious time in prison. Most cases begin with a maximum 5-year sentence, but that’s per count. If a pharmacist is accused of defrauding an insurance company on 6 occasions, that’s up to 30-years in jail if found guilty.
Hiring an attorney experienced in license defense for pharmacists and other medical professionals is how pharmacists are able to reduce their charges, keep their licenses, and prove they were not knowingly or willfully violating any state or local laws.