Can You Be A Pharmacist With A Felony Or Misdemeanor? (Tips For Help)

A lot of people make mistakes over their lifetime. Whether you knowingly break the law or had no clue you were doing so makes no difference in the eyes of the law. It can get you some leniency of course with the judge.

Have you ever been to court for a speeding ticket that you just didn’t think you were speeding because you didn’t know the speed limit. Then the judge drops it down to a defective head light or something similar. So you pay the fine and nothing goes on your record.

The best thing you can do is from the start be truthful through the entire process of becoming a pharmacist.

So can you be a pharmacist with a felony or misdemeanor? 

Yes with certain convictions you can still be a pharmacist this will depend on state to state. Some states want you 7 years removed from that conviction. Your best bet is to be truthful through the entire process from applying to school to your boards. 

You can lookup by state but we will go through a couple big states below along with what kinds of convictions can keep you out longer or that most schools will allow. So read on.

Can I Be A Pharmacist With A Misdemeanor?

What Is A Misdemeanor?

Basically a misdemeanor is is more serious then a citation but less serious than a felony charge. Misdemeanors in most states have a max sentencing of 1 year in jail and served at a county jail not a federal.

They have a broad range when it comes to their description assault and battery or breaking and entering a property are some general misdemeanors.

Traffic offenses are also considered a misdemeanor especially if they involve charges as a DUI. Most theft and larceny charges would be misdemeanors.

If you have further questions on these visit your state site or setup a free consultation with a lawyer within your state. As laws and state statutes vary quite a bit.

When it comes to being a pharmacist most any misdemeanor as long as not violent or involving drugs you should be okay getting into pharmacy school along with becoming a pharmacist after you come out. We are going to go over some ways below that will make it easier even with a record to get a pharmacist job.

Can I be A Pharmacist With A Felony?

What Is A Felony?

A felony is explained basically as a crime that is much more serious then a misdemeanor. They don’t have to be violent but a lot of the times they are. States again have their own laws, but in general these are punishable by more then a year in prison in a federal prison not a county.

Some of the crimes that fall under the felony category include homicide, arson, burglary, and money laundering.

Felonies will be really tricky being a pharmacist as you are held to a higher regard. Most states set their own rules when it comes to licensing which is somewhere around 7 years removed from a felony.

Employers however can all have their own standards on what a criminal background check will bring back. Again the best thing you can do is be honest upfront because even if they don’t find out in the beginning they can find out and fire you later.

So even if you retain or get your license the getting hired by employer is a whole other battle. Is it possible yes will it be easy no.

Can I Be A Pharmacist With A DUI?

Things happen when you are younger and unfortunately it is tough learning from your mistakes. This will be based on state to state. But for the most part DUI are misdemeanors meaning no jail time except maybe the overnight or weekend you initially spend there.

1st offenses you can usually get this reduced with a great lawyer as well. Not only will it go on your record it will usually cost you a lot of money in fines and along with things like your car insurance.

You can’t look back so what do you do now? Explain the situation to the board, school, or employer that you were young and dumb. That you no longer drink and drive anymore.

Again most DUI’s are misdemeanors so it shouldn’t be an issue unless you are an alcoholic which can lead to further issues. Explain your situation and even make a call ahead to the board to ask questions as they are just people as well.

DUI While In Pharmacy School

A DUI conviction won’t immediately get you barred from getting your pharmacist license. If you don’t have an alcohol problem you have nothing to hide so be upfront.

One option can be to get reviewed by a license substance abuse counselor and have them give you a recommendation to give to the board along with a letter explaining the situation. Explain how you have moved on and learned from it.

Board Of Pharmacy Background Check

You will usually get 3 background checks performed on you on your road to becoming a pharmacist. The first one is during your pharmacy school application, 2nd is by the board, and 3rd will be by your employer.

Let them know when they are running these what you have done as you aren’t going to be able to hide it.

If you really want to see what is on your background check run one yourself with a 3rd party.

Getting A Pharmacist Job When Your Record Isn’t 100% Clean

Okay so you have done something wrong when you were younger and served your time or maybe you were wrongly convicted. Accepted maybe a plea deal that you shouldn’t have even though you were innocent. Whatever it is you may still be able to get a job as pharmacist.

Put in some etc time with community service to build up your resume. Doing things like habitat for humanity, volunteering, boys and girls club, etc. will help make your mark in the community. And will show you have a great character and willing to do the right thing.

Another option is to accept a less then desirable pharmacist job. There are many remote jobs that companies are always trying to get pharmacists there to work for.

A simple check on indeed or some other job site can bring you some results. Look for pharmacist employment opportunities that have been open for quite awhile. There is probably a negative reason why that job is still open just like there is a negative reason why you are looking for that job. Give it a shot what do you have to lose.

Related Questions

Can A Pharmacy Tech Have A Felony?

First off  being honest is your best bet as they will find out when they do the background. Although getting a pharmacy tech job isn’t the hardest job to get with a felony charge it also won’t be easy.

Even if you are successful in a program you completed for this felony it still will be very hard to get hired. You may need to look for other jobs or look in a remote area and thing about moving there after you get the job.

Look at Pharmacy Tech jobs that have been on the market for a long time and apply to those.

Can I Be A Pharmacy Technician With A DUI?

Yes you can still be a pharmacy tech with a DUI. Does that mean you will be? Not necessarily as it will vary from employer to employer. If it happened when you are young there is a better chance of you getting the job since you have learned from that mistake.


Although it is best to never break the law things happen and you need to do the best you can to live your life and move forward. It isn’t the end of the world you just need to adjust and try to make things right.

There will be options most of the time and those may not be the easiest.

Moving to a more remote area that is in heavy need of a pharmacist may be your best bet. Look for jobs with companies that don’t have the best reputations especially to just get your foot in the door.

Danielle Winner

Hello my name is Danielle Winner. Welcome to my site on Pharmacy School and tips and tricks to hopefully help you get in. It's not easy but hopefully you can learn to not make mistakes that students (myself included) make. Good luck on your journey. I graduated from Albany School of Pharmacy in May 2010 and have had a few different jobs across the east coast of the U.S.

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