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DEA Applications and DEA Denials Lawyers

April 1, 2022 DEA Defense Lawyers

Has your application for a Certificate of Registration been denied by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration? Professionals devote a considerable amount of energy, time and money into their education and practice. However, the ability to practice within your chosen field depends on the federal government’s approval of your application.

The DEA is permitted to deny applications only under specific circumstances. If those circumstances are not met, the DEA should process the application requesting a Certificate of Registration in good faith. The unfortunate reality, however, is that some applications face unexpected challenges and delays that could take months to sort out. During this period of time, you are unable to practice your profession, and your career is essentially put on hold. An experienced DEA attorney can help you to overcome obstacles so that your application receives the proper attention that it deserves.

Who Needs a Certificate of Registration?
If you intend to write a prescription for any type of controlled substance or prescription medication in the United States, you must have a Certificate of Registration issued by the DEA. Professionals who may need this certificate are physicians, dentists, nurse practitioners and veterinarians. Keep in mind, however, that other professionals may also need a Certificate of Registration for their professional endeavors.

Causes for an Application Denial
The Drug Enforcement Administration is permitted to deny an application for a Certificate of Registration when one of seven possible situations are met. These include:

  • Falsification of information provided on the registration application
  • Exclusion from participation in the Medicare and Medicaid programs
  • A felony conviction for a controlled substance
  • The revocation, suspension or denial of your medical license in one or more states
  • A prior voluntarily surrender of registration
  • An immediate danger to the public’s safety or health
  • Engagement in behaviors that are not in the public’s best interest

Understanding the Grounds for the Public’s Best Interest
The final causation for an application denial is a gray area to many people. It provides the DEA with a catch-all group to justify a denial when a possible reason does not fit in other categories. Often, denials that are classified as being against the public’s best interest are based on one of several factors. These are:

  • Non-compliance with local, state and federal laws
  • Previous convictions related to controlled substances
  • The inability to keep controlled substances out of unlawful channels
  • Previous experiences related to the distribution and handling of controlled substances

Keep in mind that these are only some of the many factors that could be taken into consideration. Ultimately, the DEA has considerable leeway to define a specific factor as going against the public’s best interest.

When an Application Is Denied
The DEA must take two formal steps before the application can officially be denied. The first step is to issue a formal statement that defines the cause for a denial. You are permitted time to make your case for an approval in response. You can also request a formal hearing. This request must be made within 30 days of receipt of the Order to Show Cause, or you will forfeit the right to a hearing. The second step is to hold this hearing if you choose to exercise this right. The hearing will be presided over by an Administrative Law Judge, or ALJ. The ALJ will review both sides of the case and will issue a final decision. However, that decision is subject to an appeal.

The Typical Timeframe for a DEA Application
The Drug Enforcement Administration states that renewals for a certificate of registration should take four weeks to complete. Otherwise, new applications should take between four and six weeks. While these are published expectations, some applications will take much longer to process. This unnecessary delay equates to lost money for the applicant as well as unnecessary stress.

Schedule a Consultation
Has your application for a Certificate of Registration from the DEA been delayed or denied? Regardless of where you are with your process, it is important to seek professional legal advice as soon as possible. To inquire about a free consultation with an attorney experienced with DEA cases, contact our law firm today.

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