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Location

Board of Vocational Nursing and Psychiatric Technicians
Suite 205
2535 Capitol Oaks Drive
Sacramento, CA 95833
Phone: (916) 263-7800
Email: bvnpt@dca.ca.gov

Enforcement - Frequently Asked Questions

Click on the heading below to view the question listed, or scroll through the entire document:

Convictions

1. Do I have to report an arrest to the Board, if I was not convicted?
2. Do I have to report automobile accidents to the Board?
3. What happens if I can´t obtain certified court documents and police reports on prior convictions?
4. Do I have to report non-payment of child support?
5. Do I have to report a conviction that was expunged; for example, a conviction that was stricken or deleted from official records?
6. What happens if I fail to disclose all or part of my prior convictions?
7. Do I have to report misdemeanors, felonies and/or convictions which I pled nolo contendere?
8. Do I have to report juvenile convictions if I was tried as an adult?
9. Do I have to report military convictions or a dishonorable discharge?
10. Do I have to report traffic violations?
11. What happens if I have a lot of traffic violations?
12. Do I have to report traffic violations that required jail time?
13. How does the Board determine which violations are substantially related to the applicant´s license?
14. How does the Board determine satisfactory rehabilitation of an "applicant for licensure" or licensee?

Disciplinary Process

15. What happens when a complaint is filed against me?
16. What happens if the Board issues a citation and fine against me?
17. What happens if the Board decides to take disciplinary action against me?
18. What happens if I am issued a license on probation?
19. Does the Board report my disciplinary status to law enforcement officials?

Fingerprint Requirements

20. How often do I have to have my fingerprints taken?
21. What do I need to do to have my fingerprints taken?
22. Will I have to pay for my fingerprints to be taken?
23. What does the Board look for on the DOJ and/or Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) RAP Sheets?
24. How can I get a copy of my criminal record?
25. How long does a conviction stay on my RAP Sheet?

Licenses

26. Why doesn´t the Board delineate the criteria for denial of a license?
27. Why do I have to take and pass the examination before a decision is made on my past conviction history?
28. Do I get my examination fees refunded if my license is denied?
29. What happens if the Board decides to deny my license?
30. After I am licensed, do I have to report subsequent convictions?
31. What happens if another agency or state took disciplinary action against the license they issued to me?
32. What happens if I fail to self-report a conviction prior to my license renewal?
33. Can I still practice as a LVN or PT if a complaint is filed against me or if I disclose a conviction on my renewal application?

Statutes & Regulations

34. Do I have to report an address change to the Board?
35. What are the continuing education requirements for my license?
36. What happens if I don´t complete the continuing education requirements prior to license renewal?
37. What happens if I allow my license to become delinquent for over four (4) consecutive years?
38. What are the reporting requirements if I observe another LVN or PT performing an illegal or unprofessional act?
39. What happens if I fail to report a known violation of the law committed by another LVN or PT?

Information on Web Site

40. Where can I find information about the laws governing my license?
41. Does the Board publish a newsletter?
42. Does the Board publish the names of licensees who have disciplinary action taken against their license?

Convictions

  • 1. Do I have to report an arrest to the Board, if I was not convicted?

    No. You only need to report an arrest if you were convicted.

  • 2. Do I have to report automobile accidents to the Board?

    Yes, if a traffic ticket was issued and you were fined over $1000, you must report the automobile accident to the Board.

  • 3. What happens if I can´t obtain certified court documents and police reports on prior convictions?

    You must obtain written confirmation of this fact from the applicable court and/or police department, specifying that they could not locate the required documents. The Board will verify this fact and will base its decision for licensure on other available information; for example, letters of recommendation, evidence of rehabilitation, etc.

  • 4. Do I have to report non-payment of child support?

    No. This issue will not cause your license to be denied, however, if the non-payment is turned over to the District Attorney´s (DA) Office for non-payment, the DA will notify the Department of Consumer Affairs – Family Support Unit. If you are deemed eligible for licensure, your license will be issued on a temporary basis for 150 days. If, at the end of that time period, you have not established a payment agreement with the DA´s Office, your license will be suspended.

  • 5. Do I have to report a conviction that was expunged; for example, a conviction that was stricken or deleted from official records?

    Yes, you must report all expunged convictions. Pursuant to Penal Code section 1203.4, you are required to report a conviction that was expunged. The law specifies that it "does not relieve him or her of the obligation to disclose the conviction in response to any direct question contained in any questionnaire or application for public office, for licensure by any state or local agency, . . . ."

  • 6. What happens if I fail to disclose all or part of my prior convictions?

    Your failure to disclose all or part of your past convictions may be deemed grounds for disciplinary action as you falsified information required on your application for licensure. Your license may be denied.

  • 7. Do I have to report misdemeanors, felonies and/or convictions which I pled nolo contendere?

    Yes. Pursuant to Business and Professions Code sections 2878.6 (VN Practice Act) and 4523 (PT Law), a plea or verdict of guilty or a conviction following a plea of nolo contendere made to a charge substantially related to the qualifications, functions and duties of an LVN or PT is deemed to be a conviction.

  • 8. Do I have to report juvenile convictions if I was tried as an adult?

    Yes. If you were under 18 years of age and were tried and convicted as an adult, you are required to disclose this juvenile conviction.

  • 9. Do I have to report military convictions or a dishonorable discharge?

    Yes. Any conviction or disciplinary action during your military career must be reported to the Board on the Record of Conviction form.

  • 10. Do I have to report traffic violations?

    Yes, if the traffic violation involved alcohol or controlled substances or if a fine was over $1000.

  • 11. What happens if I have a lot of traffic violations?

    It depends on the violations. Repeated "minor" violations show a disregard for the law and will be considered in the Board´s evaluation of your application for licensure.

  • 12. Do I have to report traffic violations that required jail time?

    Yes. Any offense that required you to be imprisoned, jailed, confined, fined and/or placed on probation must be reported to the Board.

  • 13. How does the Board determine which violations are substantially related to the applicant´s license?

    Pursuant to the California Code of Regulations, sections 2521 (VN Regulations) and 2578 (PT Regulations), a crime or act is considered to be substantially related to the qualifications, functions or duties of an LVN or PT if to a substantial degree it evidences present or potential unfitness of an LVN or PT to perform the functions authorized by his/her license in a manner consistent with the public health, safety or welfare. Such crimes or acts include, but are not limited to those involving the following issues:

    • Procuring a license by fraud, misrepresentation or mistake.
    • A conviction of practicing medicine without a license.
    • Violating or attempting to violate, directly or indirectly, or assisting in or abetting the violation of, or conspiring to violate any provision or term of the VN Practice Act or PT Law.
    • Aiding or assisting, or agreeing to aid or assist any person or persons, whether a licensed physician or not, in the performance of or arranging for a violation of any of the provisions of the Medical Board of California Practice Act.
    • Conviction of a crime involving fiscal dishonesty.
    • Any crime or act involving the sale, gift, administration, or furnishing of "narcotics or dangerous drugs or dangerous devices" as defined in the Pharmacy Practice Act, Section 4022.
  • 14. How does the Board determine satisfactory rehabilitation of an "applicant for licensure" or licensee?

    Pursuant to Business and Professions Code sections 480 and 490 and the California Code of Regulations sections 2522 (VN Regulations) and 2579 (PT Regulations), the Board considers the following criteria to determine satisfactory rehabilitation:

    • Nature and severity of the act(s), offense(s), or crime(s) under consideration.
    • Actual or potential harm to the public.
    • Actual or potential harm to any patient.
    • Overall disciplinary record.
    • Overall criminal actions taken by any federal, state or local agency or court.
    • Prior warnings on record or prior remediation.
    • Number and/or variety of current violations.
    • Mitigation evidence.
    • In case of a criminal conviction, compliance with terms of sentence and/or court-ordered probation.
    • Time passed since the act(s) or offense(s) occurred.
    • If applicable, evidence of proceedings to dismiss a conviction pursuant to Penal Code section 1203.4.
    • Cooperation with the Board and other law enforcement or regulatory agencies.
    • Other rehabilitation evidence.

Disciplinary Process

  • 15. What happens when a complaint is filed against me?

    The Board will conduct an investigation into the complaint. At that time, the complainant and licensee will be given the opportunity to respond to the merits of the complaint. The Board will make a determination as to whether disciplinary action is required.

  • 16. What happens if the Board issues a citation and fine against me?

    If the Board determines that you have committed a violation and the violation does not warrant revocation or suspension of your license, the Board may issue a citation and fine. If you are issued a citation and fine, you will have thirty (30) days to comply with the citation order or you may request an informal hearing with the Board´s Executive Officer. The Executive Officer or her designee has the right to sustain, reduce or dismiss the citation during your informal hearing. If the Executive Officer or her designee sustains the citation order, you have the right to request an administrative hearing on the matter.

  • 17. What happens if the Board decides to take disciplinary action against me?

    An Accusation will be filed, and you will be officially notified of the proposed disciplinary action. You will have fifteen (15) days to file a Notice of Defense to request an administrative hearing. If you file a Notice of Defense, a hearing date will be scheduled to allow you the opportunity to contest the merits of the Accusation.

    If you fail to file a Notice of Defense, you will have essentially "waived your rights" to a hearing to contest the merits of the Accusation. You will be considered in default, and the Board can take action to revoke your license without an administrative hearing.

  • 18. What happens if I am issued a license on probation?

    You will be required to comply with the terms and conditions of your probation. The Board´s Disciplinary Guidelines (http://www.bvnpt.ca.gov/pdf/discguide.pdf) contain the list of standard and optional conditions that may apply to your license on probation. You will be given a detailed letter summarizing the terms and conditions of your probation. Additionally, a meeting with a Board representative will be scheduled to go over the probationary requirements and to ensure your understanding and compliance.

  • 19. Does the Board report my disciplinary status to law enforcement officials?

    Yes. Examples of disciplinary actions include revocation, suspension, and probation. The Board reports your disciplinary status to the Healthcare Integrity and Protection Data Bank (HIPDB). The HIPDB is a national health care fraud and abuse data collection program for the reporting and disclosure of final adverse actions taken against health care providers, suppliers or practitioners. Eligible federal and state agencies and health plans that are registered with the HIPDB, including all law enforcement agencies, may access this information.

    If you are certified or licensed in another health-related field (for example, Certified Nurse Assistant, Medical Assistant, Registered Nurse, etc.), the Board will notify the applicable licensing agency accordingly. That agency will be solely responsible for determining whether the Board´s action against your license will impact your ability to practice in that agency´s health care field.

Fingerprint Requirements

  • 20. How often do I have to have my fingerprints taken?

    The Board requires you to submit fingerprint information prior to licensure. Thereafter, the California Department of Justice (DOJ) will automatically notify the Board if you receive any subsequent convictions.

    For licensees who were licensed prior to January 1, 1998 or for whom a record of the submission of fingerprint no longer exists, the Board requires you to submit fingerprint information as a condition of license renewal.

  • 21. What do I need to do to have my fingerprints taken?

    You will need a "Request for Live Scan Service"form, which is provided by the Board. Instructions for fingerprinting are included with the "Request for Live Scan Service"form.

  • 22. Will I have to pay for my fingerprints to be taken?

    At the time of fingerprinting, you will pay a DOJ processing fee ($32), an FBI processing fee ($17), plus a Live Scan rolling fee charged by the Live Scan agency.

  • 23. What does the Board look for on the DOJ and/or FBI RAP Sheets?

    The Board requests DOJ and FBI RAP Sheets pursuant to California statute and the Federal Public Law 92-544 respectively. The Board then utilizes this information to determine your qualifications and ability to practice in a safe manner. RAP Sheets (i.e., criminal record reports) are reviewed by the Board to ensure that the conviction history matches what was documented on your Record of Conviction or license renewal form, which you signed under penalty of perjury

  • 24. How can I get a copy of my criminal record?

    You may request a copy of your own criminal record from DOJ. You will need to submit a "Request for Live Scan Service" form and pay a $25 processing fee. If you cannot come to California, DOJ requires you to submit an "Application to Obtain Copy of State Summary Criminal History Record" form, a standard 10-print finger print card, and a $25 processing fee. You should contact DOJ to obtain the necessary forms and additional information on this process.

    It is important to know that, even if you obtain a copy of your own criminal record from DOJ, you must still comply with the Board´s fingerprinting requirement, which includes submitting the "Request for Live Scan Service" form that the Board provides you and paying the DOJ and FBI processing fees ($49) plus the Live Scan rolling fee charged by the Live Scan agency.

  • 25. How long does a conviction stay on my RAP Sheet?

    The information contained on your RAP Sheets is retained indefinitely by DOJ. Therefore, you should always report all prior convictions. Your failure to disclose all past convictions may be deemed grounds for disciplinary action as you falsified information required on your application for licensure.

Licenses

  • 26. Why doesn´t the Board delineate the criteria for denial of a license?

    The Board has to look at each application for licensure on a case-by-case basis. There are too many factors which must be evaluated to determine a person´s qualifications to practice. The criteria used to evaluate an application for licensure include the number of acts/convictions; nature and severity of the acts/convictions; actual or potential harm to the public; the amount of time that has passed since the acts/convictions occurred; the evidence of rehabilitation presented; and whether the acts/convictions were substantially related to the practice of an LVN or PT. See sections 2521 and 2522 of the VN regulations and sections 2578 and 2579 of the PT regulations for the criteria. The burden of proof is on the applicant to demonstrate rehabilitation.

  • 27. Why do I have to take and pass the examination before a decision is made on my past conviction history?

    The Board does not generally deny applications for examination. Therefore, the Board makes its official determination when you have successfully met all the requirements for initial licensure.

  • 28. Do I get my examination fees refunded if my license is denied?

    No. The fees paid to take the licensing examination are non-refundable.

  • 29. What happens if the Board decides to deny my license?

    If the Board denies your application for licensure, you have the right to appeal by requesting an administrative hearing. At the hearing, you may be represented by legal counsel or you may appear on your own behalf. The hearing is conducted by an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ), without the Board Members present. During the hearing, the Board staff is represented by an attorney from the Office of the Attorney General. The ALJ hears the case and proposes a decision for Board action. The burden of proof is upon you to establish your qualifications to practice and your rehabilitation efforts.

  • 30. After I am licensed, do I have to report subsequent convictions?

    Yes. As part of your biennial renewal process, you are required to certify under penalty of perjury whether you have been convicted of any crime since your license renewal. Additionally, DOJ will send the Board a copy of your RAP Sheet for any subsequent convictions. It is always best for you to self-report any conviction.

  • 31. What happens if another agency or state took disciplinary action against the license they issued to me?

    The Board may deny a license application or may suspend or revoke any license issued, based upon the denial of licensure, suspension, restriction, or other disciplinary action of a license by another state, any other government agency, or by another California health care professional licensing board.

  • 32. What happens if I fail to self-report a conviction prior to my license renewal?

    You are required to always self-report your convictions on your license renewal document. Your failure to disclose all past convictions may be deemed grounds for disciplinary action as you falsified information required on your application for license renewal. Additionally, DOJ will send the Board a copy of your RAP Sheets for any subsequent convictions. If the conviction appears substantially related to your practice, the Board will conduct an investigation and may take disciplinary action to revoke your license.

  • 33. Can I still practice as a LVN or PT if a complaint is filed against me or if I disclose a conviction on my renewal application?

    Yes. You have the right to due process under the law for any complaint filed against you. Therefore, until formal disciplinary action is taken against you, you have the right to practice unless a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) or an Interim Suspension Order (ISO) has been ordered or you are prohibited from practicing pursuant to Penal Code section 23.

    A TRO is issued by the Superior Court to prohibit or compel an action. Generally, TROs are used to prohibit a licensee´s access to a facility or to a specific person.

    An ISO is similar to a TRO, with the exception that the ISO pertains only to the license. For instance, a licensee may be ordered not to practice using his/her license during the time the ISO is in effect.

    Penal Code section 23 authorizes the Board to appear in any criminal proceeding and make recommendations regarding specific conditions to be imposed on persons seeking to be released on their own recognizance, released on bail or being sentenced, including recommendations concerning conditions prohibiting a licensee from engaging in licensed practice or restricting a licensee´s practice.

Statutes & Regulations

  • 34. Do I have to report an address change to the Board?

    Yes. Pursuant to Business and Professions Code section 136, you are required to notify the Board at its principal office of any changes to your mailing address within 30 days after the change. Violation of this statute may result in the issuance of a citation and fine. Additionally, failure to notify the Board of your new address may result in unnecessary delays in receipt of your renewal notices, renewed license, disciplinary notices and other important correspondence from the Board.

  • 35. What are the continuing education requirements for my license?

    You are required to complete thirty (30) hours of continuing education (CE) every two years (excluding the first renewal after initial licensure). The Board conducts random audits to ensure compliance with this law. Failure to have documentation verifying timely completion of your CE courses may cause the issuance of a citation and fine.

  • 36. What happens if I don´t complete the continuing education requirements prior to license renewal?

    If you have not completed your 30 hours of continuing education (CE), you must pay your license renewal fee and renew your license on an "inactive status." This means that you cannot legally practice as an LVN or PT until you complete the required CE courses and obtained an "active" license from the Board.

  • 37. What happens if I allow my license to become delinquent for over four (4) consecutive years?

    Pursuant to Business and Professions Code sections 2892.4 (VN Practice Act) and 4545.3 (PT Law), if you fail to renew your license for more than four (4) consecutive years, your original license will expire and cannot be renewed, restored, reinstated or reissued thereafter. You will be required to retake and successfully complete the licensing examination. Please remember that working with a delinquent or expired license is a violation of the law, subject to citation and fine, revocation of your license, or criminal sanctions.

  • 38. What are the reporting requirements if I observe another LVN or PT performing an illegal or unprofessional act?

    Pursuant to Business and Professions Code sections 2878.1 (VN Practice Act) and 4521.2 (PT Law) and California Code of Regulations sections 2520.4 (VN Regulations) and 2577.5 (PT Regulations), an LVN or PT must report any known violation of the law committed by another LVN or PT. Licensees must report violations to the Board, in writing, within 30 calendar days of becoming aware of the violation. The reporting licensee must cooperate with the Board in furnishing information or assistance. The report may be submitted on the "Licensee Mandatory Reporting Form" available on the Board´s website or by writing to the Board´s Enforcement Division.

  • 39. What happens if I fail to report a known violation of the law committed by another LVN or PT?

    Failure to report a known violation committed by another LVN or PT constitutes unprofessional conduct and may result in disciplinary action or a citation and fine.

Information on Web Site

(01/28/09)

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For further information consumers and licensees may contact:

The Board of Vocational Nursing and Psychiatric Technicians
2535 Capitol Oaks Drive, Suite 205
Sacramento, California 95833
Telephone (916) 263-7800
FAX (916) 263-7857