Professionals With Debts Licensed Out of Work
Are you a licensed professional who is behind on debts? If so, be on the lookout for a letter from your state board. You may not be able to renew your license until your taxes, traffic tickets and other state debts are paid.
Many licensed professionals such as hair stylists, physical therapists, veterinarians, accountants, engineers, real estate brokers and architects are finding out that they may be unable to work soon because the state is threatening to suspend their license for frivolous offenses such as being behind on debts.
While licensed professionals should be punished for engaging in unethical or illegal activities, they shouldn’t be punished for their financial difficulties. Virtually everyone has paid a bill late now and then because they’re lacking money. Taking away the licenses of these people and making it so they cannot work and earn money certainly does nothing to help the situation. If these professionals cannot earn a living, how can they repay these state taxes and fees that they owe?
Absurd State Laws
Florida is one state that allows licensed professionals to be disciplined for failure to pay debts. Under Florida Statutes Section 456.072(k), failure to perform a legal obligation can result in license suspension. This includes repayment of student loans, traffic tickets and taxes
These laws affect millions of people across the country. People are being forced to obtain and maintain a professional license for numerous occupations, such as manicurist, chauffeur, physical therapist, upholsterer, security guard and taxidermist. You even need a license to shampoo hair, even though the average person can do this task on their own without one.
The Supreme Court has argued that states can impose license requirements to protect the health and safety of others. They cannot, however, impose requirements that have nothing to do with a licensed professional’s qualifications. So do unpaid taxes fall under this category?
Apparently, they do, as a Maryland state court argued in one case that being able to pay taxes is related to a person’s ability to work as a dentist. While financial difficulties may be looked down upon in a profession that deals with money, such as accounting, it’s difficult to understand why a dentist would be unqualified to fill cavities, for example, simply because he or she is behind on paying state taxes.
These laws are counterproductive, but if you’re a Florida professional who has unpaid bills, you will likely be affected. You’ll want to do what you can to protect your professional license, which is your source of livelihood. Without it, earning money will become a challenge.
Keep Your License with Help From a Tampa Administrative and Professional Licensing Lawyer
When a licensed professional is behind on debts, they need to work to earn more income to pay these bills. Revoking their licenses only makes them unable to work, making the situation even worse.
If you are a licensed Florida professional facing license loss for unpaid taxes, traffic tickets, court fees and other late bills, you need to take the appropriate steps to keep your license. The Law Offices of David P. Rankin, P.A. has 30 years of experience representing licensed professionals who are facing punishment from the state board. Contact my office at (813) 968-6633 to schedule a consultation today.