7 POINT CHECKLIST WHEN NEGOTIATING PHYSICIAN CONTRACTS
Here is what experienced physicians know. That the first job will not be their last, first contracts need to be looked at very carefully to plan ahead for how their future employment opportunities will be impacted. It is an awakening when a physician resident comes out of school and lose the immunity and cocooning that they had during residency. In reality, physicians in the working world are susceptible to lawsuits, licensure complaints, employers who are negligent in carrying out their processes, and often find themselves handcuffed into non-compete agreements that impact their future employment prospects.
There are many things to negotiate in a Physician Employment Contract. The terms include:
- Compensation Calculation: Is compensation based on a set salary or net revenues? Is performance based on RVUs or profitability of the business? After-hours services compensation? Earning a bonus based on performance and attracting new patient business?
- Malpractice insurance: Will the employer provide it? Does it include tail coverage, nose-in coverage, and differences between claims made and occurrence based coverage.
- Minimum Obligations of the Employee: What is the physician obligated to perform: based on number of days worked or number of patients seen, RVU's performed, or revenues collected.
- Minimum Obligations for the Employer: Maintaining a support staff, a reliable Electronic Medical Record (EMR) system, scheduling, training, relaying patient messages, prescription refills (controlled and non-controlled), position on patient abuse of the professional.
- Right of Termination: who can terminate with cause and without cause? How many days notice?
- What happens post termination: earned paid time off, return of records and equipment, access to patient records if a question comes up later.
- Non-compete: who or what entity is defined as a competitor? How many miles from what location? What area of medicine/specialty? Is the non-compete nullified if terminated without cause?
Reasons to retain an attorney:
Most physicians do not understand the intricacies and ramifications of physician employment agreements. To review and negotiate a contract that does not limit the future of a young physician, it is best to get legal help earlier in the process to navigating the 5 most important things.
- Long lasting consequences of Non-compete
- Compensation is not clear or fair market value
- CME (Continuing Medical Education) benefits are not clearly listed – (association dues, license dues, course registration, and travel expenses)
- You may be restricted from serving on certain insurance panels
- You may have to relocate out of the area.
What does it cost to Have an Attorney Review a Physician Contract?
Our firm reviews physician contracts:
- Option 1 - for $875, and we will give you insights on what and how to negotiate, and conduct a background check on the employer.
- Option 2 - Some physicians prefer for us to negotiate their contracts, ask us about fees if that is your preference.
Ben Assad Mirza is a Florida attorney with a finance background, who has negotiated from both sides of the table, reach out to Ben Assad Mirza by calling or texting to (954)445-5503, or email me at [email protected]
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