QUESTION:

I am a RN, originally licensed in the state of Wa, and currently applying for endorsement in the state of Ca. On the RN endorsement application it clearly, and repeatedly, states that ANY prior convictions must be reported. I had a DUI when I was 17, completed all of the probation, community service, rehabilitation, and fee requirements, and had my record sealed. I am now 29, have had no infractions before or since that incident, and when I contacted the courthouse about my records, they informed me the records/documents weren’t found in their system and only after contacting the DA did I find out they had, in fact been sealed. Should I report this on my nursing application?

ANSWER:

Juvenile criminal matters are usually termed adjudications and not convictions, so there is a case to be made that you do not have a duty to disclose. But conventional wisdom is that it’s always better to over-disclose than to under-disclose in these situations. And while California generally honors the concept of sealed juvenile records for all purposes, there are some exceptions for law enforcement, health care providers and people applying for state licensure. Based of the BON website, you probably do not have a duty to disclose – but I recommend that a person disclose anyway – but not specify what the offense was. The person should make it clear that the matter was sealed and the board will probably be unable to inquire into it further. I hope my general overview is a little helpful, but you should contact an attorney in your area who specializes in this before acting.

https://www.rn.ca.gov/enforcement/convictions.shtml

California Code of Regulations, Title 2, Section 7287.4 provides: “(a) Selection and Testing. Any policy or practice of an employer or other covered entity which has an adverse impact on employment opportunities of individuals on a basis enumerated in the Act is unlawful unless the policy or practice is job-related, as defined in Section 7287.4(e). The Commission herein adopts the Uniform Guidelines on Employee Selection Procedures promulgated by various federal agencies, including the EEOC and Department of Labor. [29 CFR 1607 (1978)]….(d) Specific Practices. (1) Criminal Records. Except as otherwise provided by law (e.g., 12 U.S.C. 1829; Labor Code Section 432.7), it is unlawful for an employer or other covered entity to inquire or seek information regarding any applicant concerning: (A) Any arrest or detention which did not result in conviction; (B) Any conviction for which the record has been judicially ordered sealed, expunged, or statutorily eradicated (e.g., juvenile offense records sealed pursuant to Welfare and Institutions Code Section 389 and Penal Code Sections 851.7 or 1203.45); any misdemeanor conviction for which probation has been successfully completed or otherwise discharged and the case has been judicially dismissed pursuant to Penal Code Section 1203.4; or (C) Any arrest for which a pretrial diversion program has been successfully completed pursuant to Penal Code Sections 1000.5 and 1001.5.

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