A Jupiter, Florida doctor has been arrested for practicing medicine without a license, according to My Palm Beach Post, and is facing charges under Florida statute 456.065. The man’s medical license was revoked back in 2015 after he was found negligent for his overly generous methods of dispensing opioid pain medications to patients with mental illnesses, drug addicts, and even a morbidly obese women whose pain complaint was not being able to bend over. The defendant was eventually caught providing healthcare to an undercover Florida Department of Health investigator.
Penalties for Practicing Medicine Without a License
As a physician, if you are found guilty of practicing medicine without a medical license not only does this offense threaten your future career in medicine, but you may be facing potential jail time as well. The criminal penalties that you are up against depend on a variety of factors, as defined below:
First Degree Misdemeanor: Practicing, attempt to practice, or offering to practice any health care profession with either an inactive or delinquent license for any period of time up to 12 months, punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of $2,500;
Third Degree Felony: Practicing, attempt to practice, or offering to practice any health care profession with either an inactive or delinquent license for any period of time of 12 months or more, which is punishable by up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine; this violation also carries a mandatory minimum of 30 days in jail and a $500 fine; and
Second Degree Felony: Practicing a health care profession and causing a serious bodily injury or death. A second degree felony is punishable by up to 15 years in prison, and a violation of this statute carries a mandatory minimum of one year in jail.
Additional Fines for Practicing Medicine Without a License in Florida
Whether the defendant was a licensed medical professional whose license was recently revoked, or they never had a medical license and have been charged under this statute, the monetary fines for practicing without a medical license can be extraordinary:
- For each offense, the department may issue an administrative citation of no less than $500 and no more than $5,000 per incident;
- The court may be compensated for the cost of investigation and prosecution; and
- The prevailing party may also be awarded for reasonable attorney fees at the cost of the defendant.
The court may also award to the prevailing party court costs and reasonable attorney fees and, in the event the department prevails, may also award reasonable costs of investigation and prosecution.
A West Palm Beach Criminal Defense Attorney Can Help
Make no mistake, practicing medicine without a valid medical license is a serious criminal offense in Florida, and no one should go legally unrepresented during their day in court. Our attorneys can help you beat these charges or negotiate for a reduced sentence to keep you out of jail and reduce the financially crippling fines imposed under this statute. Call the Skier Law Firm today for help.