If you are a licensed physician or a medical resident in the State of Florida and are found guilty of fraud or misrepresentation in the practice of medicine, you can lose your license or have your application denied, and with it your ability to earn a living.
You can also face administrative fines of up to $10,000 for each offense, and these fines may not be covered by your liability insurance. Explore other crimes barring healthcare professionals from practicing in Florida.
How Being Accused of Fraud or Misrepresentation Affect Your License
If you are a Florida-licensed physician, or medical resident under a licensed physician’s supervision, and have received an administrative complaint from the Department of Health (DOH), you are probably concerned about how this may affect your license.
According to Sections 456.072(1)(a), 456.072(1)(m), and 458.331(1)(k), Florida Statutes, the Florida Board of Medicine may discipline your license if you are found to have “[m]a[de] deceptive, untrue, or fraudulent representations in or related to the practice of medicine or employ[ed] a trick or scheme in the practice of medicine.”
What can you do? Our attorneys have expertise in helping health care professionals with these situations. You should see legal advice as soon as possible.
The Penalties for Fraud Violations
According to Rule 64B8-8.001(2)(k), Florida Administrative Code, the penalty for even a single violation is anywhere between probation to revocation (or denial) of your license and fines of between $1,000 and $10,000 for each violation.
If you have a prior disciplinary history, the stipulated fines are between $5,000 and $10,000 for each violation, and suspension, revocation, or denial of your license. Your disciplinary history is a matter of public record and will be viewable by patients and prospective employers.
Impact of Aggravating or Mitigating Factors in Fraud Penalties
However, these penalties are not set in stone. The Board of Medicine can take into account any number of aggravating or mitigating factors to increase or lessen the penalties set down in the rules. When you have an experienced health care attorney fighting for you, you stand a much better chance of receiving the lowest possible penalty, and even of getting the complaint against you dismissed.
Aggravating and mitigating factors may include but are not limited to:
- (a) Exposure of patient or public to injury or potential injury, physical or otherwise: none, slight, severe, or death;
- (b) Legal status at the time of the offense: no restraints, or legal constraints;
- (c) The number of counts or separate offenses established;
- (d) The number of times the same offense or offenses have previously been committed by the licensee or applicant;
- (e) The disciplinary history of the applicant or licensee in any jurisdiction and the length of practice;
- (f) Pecuniary benefit or self-gain inuring to the applicant or licensee;
- (g) The involvement in any violation of Section 458.331, F.S., of the provision of controlled substances for trade, barter, or sale, by a licensee.
- (h) Where a licensee has been charged with violating the standard of care pursuant to Section 458.331(1)(t), F.S., but the licensee, who is also the records' owner pursuant to Section 456.057(1), F.S., fails to keep and/or produce the medical records.
Contact the law offices of Howell, Buchan & Strong, Attorneys at Law for your free consultation at any one of our locations:
Orlando (407) 717-1773 |Tallahassee (850) 877-7776 | Tampa (813) 833-6726 | Sarasota (941) 779-4348