I spoke with one NCLEX applicant and three nurses this week who all needed some form of legal representation, counseling, and advising. One nurse contacted me specifically to ask if I take license defense cases pro bono. I do not take pro bono nurse license defense cases because I don't think its fair to my clients who are paying me to provide legal representation, counseling, and advising.
Nursing students and NCLEX-Applicants times have changed and you have a criminal conviction(s), depending on the circumstances these conviction you may hit a bump or two once you apply for a State Nursing Board license. If you can afford to, contact a license defense attorney in your state and pay for a legal consultation. Some license defense attorneys offer legal consultations or brief phone meetings at no charge and may also review your documents for no charge. If you cannot find a license defense attorney who offers free consultations then contact your State Nurses Association for assistance and guidance BEFORE you submit your application to the State Nursing Board.
I am also receiving more phone inquiries for drug theft, medication discrepancies, impairment (physical, mental, or chemical), and professional boundaries. Most nurses don't have their own professional liability insurance policy which would cover attorneys fees and costs in the State Nursing Board case. Purchase your own insurance policy and make sure it has a license defense protection benefit. A liability policy with your homeowner's insurance may not have a license defense protection benefit.
So for the majority of nurses if you are involved in a State Nursing Board investigation and hearing then you must pay out of pocket for your attorney. You may read this and say "oh that's no big deal" but it is for the majority of us as nurses. Alot of us are living paycheck to paycheck like the rest of America and to come up with a flat fee or retainer fee of several thousand dollars is next to impossible. This is why you need to seriously consider having your own professional liability insurance policy with a license defense benefit.
I am covered by my employer's policy, is that what you are saying? Okay so tell me when its usually the employer who terms the nurse and reports to the State Nursing Board, do you think your employer would provide you with an attorney to represent you before the Board? I think not.
If you are a licensed professional chances are at some point in your career you will need an attorney for a minor or major event(s). You are much more likely to be reported to the State Nursing Board than you are to be named as defendant in a nursing malpractice case. You can "pay as you go" for legal representation, counseling, or advising or you can purchase your own individual professional liability insurance policy with a license defense benefit to defray some, most, or all of the legal fees and costs.