Protecting Your Real Estate License Amid Criminal Charges
With a criminal conviction comes many legal considerations with which to contend. An unexpected consequence could be losing your real estate license. A judge can impose jail time, probation and fines when sentencing for a criminal conviction. Types of criminal convictions include:
- DUI offenses
- Assault and violent crimes
- Sex crimes
- Theft crimes
- Drug crimes
Depending on the type of criminal conviction, there are additional penalties that can be assigned with your conviction. If the conviction is for DUI, loss of your driver’s license can impact every aspect of your life. In addition to direct consequences, there can also be additional collateral consequences concerning your family life, your employer and with civil authorities.
If you have any professional license in the state of Florida and receive a criminal conviction, it will affect your status with that license governing board. The professional license categories include doctors & nurses, teachers, lawyers, engineers and architects, CPAs and real estate brokers and agents.
Protecting Your Real Estate License
If you have a real estate license and receive a criminal conviction, you must follow a reporting requirement established by the Florida Department of Business & Professional Regulation (DBPR.) That regulation is part of a 2018 Florida Statute that requires all professional licensees to self-report their recent criminal conviction within 30 days of that conviction, regardless of whether it resulted from a guilty plea or court ruling. Sometimes your obligation to report can be triggered by unproven accusations of criminal activity, even before a conviction has been entered.
It’s important to make sure you deal with any question regarding your license as soon as it comes up. The penalty for failure to report can be more severe than the consequences for the conviction itself. Those penalties include disciplinary measures such as fines, license suspension and revocation. Because judges and boards expect you to know your requirements, ignorance of the reporting law will not be allowed as an excuse.
Help with the Aftermath
It’s critical to be sure you are doing everything the law requires, while understanding your rights and legal options after receiving a criminal conviction. Not only should you hire an experienced criminal attorney, but you’ll need counsel regarding the administrative processes involved with protecting your professional license. At Tison Law Group, our teams have experienced criminal defense attorneys as well as experienced and compassionate professional license defense attorneys at both the state and federal level.
To defend your real estate license, you’ll need representation at various hearings and proceedings with departments such as DBPR Division of Real Estate, the Florida Appraisal Board and Florida Real Estate Commission. Keeping up with all these requirements, along with those stemming directly from the criminal conviction, can be difficult to accomplish and might seem impossible if you are serving jail time.
When your real estate license, your career and your family’s financial support is on the line, you can’t afford go it alone. You’ll need a great legal team to help you negotiate the complicated requirements and legal options revolving around your license retention, as well as your criminal conviction. Don’t allow a terrible mistake or momentary lapse in judgement to take away your livelihood and everything you’ve built for your family. Let Tison Law Group fight for you. Contact our office to schedule your consultation.