Physicians who are impaired, engage in unprofessional behavior, or violate laws may be barred from further practice. Likewise, medical students may be dismissed from medical school for many infractions, large and small. The welfare of patients and the general public must be our first priority, but when we assess physicians and students who have erred, we should seek to respond as caringly and fairly as possible. This piece will explore how we may do this at all stages of the proceedings physicians and students may encounter. This may include helping them to resume their medical careers if and when this would be sufficiently safe and beneficial for patients.