FAQ About IDFPR
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FAQs About the Illinois Department of Professional Regulation

Illinois Professional License Defense Attorney Answers Frequently Asked Questions

What if the IDFPR has contacted me about allegations of wrongdoing? Do I need legal representation?closed arrow
A person is not required to retain an attorney. However, it is in your best interest to do so. It is important that a licensee retain an attorney who has experience with the laws applicable to the IDFPR and has vast experience in representing professionals before the many IDFPR regulatory boards. After you retain an attorney's services, IDFPR attorneys are prohibited from communicating with you directly, so do not call or respond to them. Your attorney can speak with IDFPR’s investigators to evaluate the allegations against you and what appropriate preparation is needed to prepare a strong defense against the allegations.
Does hiring an attorney to represent me at a Formal Hearing or Informal Conference at IDFPR make a person look guilty from the perspective of IDFPR?closed arrow
Having attorney representation before IDFPR is not perceived by IDFPR as an indication that you are guilty. Rather, in many occasions, an attorney can work well with IDFPR to improve a person’s case outcome. Having representation also lets IDFPR know that the person being represented is seriously addressing their professional licensure matter. Whenever a regulatory agency is investigating a professional, it is a sign of good judgment rather than accepting guilt in their case.
What should someone do when they are contacted by IDFPR pending an investigation?closed arrow
We suggest immediately calling an attorney who is familiar with dealing with IDFPR. At any point in time during communication with IDFPR, a person has a right to let them know that they are in the process of retaining an attorney and that their attorney will contact IDFPR on their behalf in the future. People working for IDFPR are professional, well-trained individuals who are knowledgeable about the laws of the IFDPR. They are trained to acquire information about the allegations from the licensee. Sometimes, a person might share too much information with an IDFPR representative, which can hurt their case. Once an attorney is retained, IDFPR must only communicate with the attorney going forward with their investigation.
If a person receives a “Notice of Informal Conference” from IDFPR and has an Informal Conference scheduled, should that person retain a lawyer?closed arrow
It is in a person’s best interest to retain an attorney after receiving a “Notice of Informal Conference.” An individual is not required to have an attorney representing them at an “Informal Conference.” While the title “Informal Conference” sounds like a relaxed means to address a complaint between the person and IDFPR, it is not. Any time a person appears before a regulatory agency, they need an attorney who can present mitigating evidence pursuant to IDFPR laws and who has experience in IDFPR cases.
What are the options a person has who has participated in an “Informal Conference” with IDFPR and has been offered a “Consent Order” that does not have acceptable settlement terms?closed arrow
In all cases, a person can negotiate the terms within a proposed “Consent Order.” Whether there is a better outcome to the negotiation efforts depends on the case. Rejecting a “Consent Order” due to the terms is also allowed. Rejection of a “Consent Order” will force IDFPR to present a new offer or prove the allegations in an IDFPR Court. Obtaining an attorney to assist you through this process is prudent.
Is a person’s professional license in jeopardy if they have a conviction for a crime?closed arrow
When a professional is charged with a crime such as a DUI, controlled substance diversion, or shoplifting, it is in their best interest to contact an attorney experienced with IDFPR processes and rules immediately. IDFPR laws address criminal convictions and the application to a person’s professional licensure. The various practice acts and laws for Physicians, Physician Assistants, Nurse Practitioners, Dentists, Pharmacists, Nurses, and other professionals licensed by IDFPR operate under the laws for each profession. In many cases, a conviction can alter IDFPR’s position in the prosecution of a case. Some laws state that a conviction for a certain crime requires a mandatory revocation of a professional’s license. An experienced attorney can help maintain someone’s license in active status, allowing the person to continue to work their profession.
Can being charged with a DUI affect my professional license, and what should I do next?closed arrow
If you are charged with Driving Under the Influence (DUI), contact a criminal attorney immediately to represent you in that case. Explain to the criminal lawyer your concerns about your professional license. The best thing is to advise your criminal lawyer to contact an attorney who is familiar with IDFPR and its various professional licensing boards' attitudes toward DUI and chemical dependency. By taking an active approach, in some cases a proactive approach can overcome the department's presumption that an arrest or conviction for DUI means that you have a chemical dependence or addiction and that you need to be in a monitoring program under a disciplinary order.
I was terminated due to accusations of diverting controlled substances. Can this affect my professional license?closed arrow
In these types of cases, a lot of legal charges can be opened against you. There is a potential for a criminal case to be filed, and your employer can report you to IDFPR and other licensing agencies. Further, the DEA may revoke your registration, causing you to lose your ability to prescribe or dispense controlled substances. Alternatively, you can lose your provider status and your ability to receive payment from Medicare and Medicaid for services provided. You need to retain a law firm that is competent to represent you in all these possible matters. These situations are not ones that you should try to handle by yourself. Once you have retained an attorney, these legal authorities are prohibited from speaking with you unless you waive your right to have an attorney present.
Due to an IDFPR disciplinary action against me, my provider status is affected, and the insurance companies are dropping me as a network provider. Do I have any recourse?closed arrow
Healthcare providers need insurance payments to survive. Insurance companies view disciplinary actions differently based on the individual plan. An attorney with knowledge of the healthcare field and about the insurance company and the findings contained in the disciplinary record are crucial. Facts and circumstances surrounding the provider’s misconduct can have an impact on determining the outcome of a provider being terminated or not. Successful appeals, reapplications, and continued participation can often be achieved with proper legal representation to the insurance companies. These appeals and notices are best handled by an attorney with a healthcare background who has experience in this area of representation.
I am applying for a professional license and I have a criminal record. Can I be licensed?closed arrow
This is a complicated situation that can possibly hold up a professional license application. In general, sex offenders and individuals who have committed a fiduciary crime, such as fraud or a crime involving morals, have the most difficult time getting a license. The burden of having a past criminal background oftentimes does not prevent a person from getting this professional license issued. The process of addressing this is best handled by an attorney familiar with this area of law. It is in your best interest to retain an attorney to help you prepare your application and advocate for you throughout the application process.
Your license was suspended or revoked by IDFPR. What should you do?closed arrow
When IDFPR suspends or revokes a license, they believe that person is unfit to practice in their profession. It is the attorney’s job to try to develop a strategy to prove you are fit to practice in the State. An experienced attorney in this area is important to make the IDFPR prove their case.
What forms do I need to apply for a license?closed arrow
To begin obtaining a license, you need to submit an application form. All application forms for all areas of practice are on the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) website. The Acts and Rules for each profession can be accessed from the IDFPR’s Home Page.
When should I expect to get a renewal form for my license?closed arrow
In most cases, a renewal notice will be sent to you in the mail or via email approximately two months prior to the expiration date of your license. It is crucial to always keep your mailing and email addresses updated. It is the responsibility of the individual to renew his/her license, whether or not they receive a renewal notice from the IDFPR. Further, if someone like an employee or attorney completes the renewal application for you, it is your responsibility to review it for accuracy.
Is there a difference between a non-renewed and inactive license?closed arrow
A non-renewed license is one that has not been renewed or has been placed on inactive status. An inactive license is one which has been placed on inactive status by the licensee, usually at renewal time. If a license is non-renewed or inactive for five years or longer, it may be necessary to submit a restoration application. A person or entity may not practice in Illinois when their license is in non-renewed or inactive status.
What does an "intent to deny" letter mean?closed arrow
After submitting an application or renewal form, you may receive an "Intent to Deny" your application from IDFPR. Sometimes, you may receive a "Notice of Informal Conference" to meet with the IDFPR and professional board. At this point, the IDFPR found an issue with your application that needs to be presented to the relevant professional licensing board. Experience shows that the majority of issues deal with previous disciplinary actions from other states and/or criminal convictions. In these cases, it is very wise to consult with legal counsel. Trying to go it alone is not suggested.
Illinois State Bar Association DuPage County Bar Association Illinois Pharmacists Association American Pharmacists Association 10.0Joseph John Bogdan
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