State Clarifies Process for Removing Disciplinary Records from Professional Licenses

Last Updated: Oct 2, 2019

regulation-signAct 6 of 2018, enacted on Feb. 15, 2018,  authorizes the Commissioner of the Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs (BPOA) to expunge certain disciplinary records upon application and to require the applicant to pay a fee to cover all costs associated with the expungement as established by the Commissioner by regulation.

The final form of these regulations were published in the Sept. 28, 2019 edition of the Pennsylvania Bulletin (Vol. 49, No. 39). The regulations became effective upon publication.

What records can be expunged and how?

Only certain disciplinary records are eligible for expungement under Act 6. These records are:

  • Discipline imposed for a violation involving failure to complete continuing education requirements, and
  • Discipline imposed for a violation involving practicing for 6 months or less on a lapsed or expired license, registration, certificate or permit.

No other disciplinary records are eligible for expungement under Act 6.

Under Act 6, additional criteria that the licensee must meet to be eligible for expungement of their disciplinary records are as follows:

  • The licensee may apply for expungement no earlier than 4 years from the final disposition of the disciplinary record.
  • The disciplinary record must be the licensee's only disciplinary record with a licensing board or commission under the Commissioner's jurisdiction.
  • The licensee must not be the subject of an active investigation related to professional or occupational conduct and not be in a current disciplinary status, such as revoked, suspended or on probation.
  • Any fees or fines, including civil penalties and costs imposed in a disciplinary proceeding, assessed against the licensee must be paid in full.
  • The licensee may not have had a disciplinary record previously expunged by the Commissioner.

To expunge records, an application must be submitted to BPOA. There will be an online submittal process for expungement applications via the Pennsylvania Licensing System (PALS).

What is the fee for expungement?

The regulations establish an expungement application fee of $155. This fee is based on the calculation of current costs to process an expungement application and anticipating increases in this cost over the next few years. When the fee is no longer sufficient to cover the costs associated with processing an application for expungement, the Commissioner will reassess the fee and promulgate a new fee by regulation.

Where can I find additional information?

Act 6 also standardized disciplinary conduct reporting requirements across all state licensing boards, more information on this aspect of Act 6 can be found in this PAMED article.

For a comprehensive list and description of regulatory items that PAMED is tracking, please visit PAMED's Regulatory Update.

PAMED will continue to monitor the promulgation of new regulations, comment on proposed rules and regulations on behalf of PAMED members and share all updates with PAMED members and provide information to members on how they may submit comments.

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