Google Review

Contracts, Doctors, and Common Mistakes: What You Should Know

As a medical practitioner, the last thing you should want or need to worry about is what may be in your employment agreements. Your years of schooling, testing, training, and keeping society healthy should be your dominant focus without the added stress of whether your practice and business contracts are set-up properly to protect you.

Below are a few things to remember when creating contracts that work in your best business interests.

  1. An important, but often overlooked step, is to retain a lawyer to review your contracts. The overall cost and expense of employing an attorney to review your contracts and documents prior to executing them outweighs the cost of retaining an attorney when a dispute arises down the road. In fact, I would go as far as to say that retaining a lawyer to review your contracts is absolutely necessary.
  2. Consult with legal counsel before anything is in writing. Employers will often offer signing bonuses and create short timeframes to execute an agreement. It is important to have your legal counsel on board as early as possible so discussions and problems can be resolved as quickly and efficiently as possible to speed up the overall process.
  3. Do not rely on oral promises that have not been reduced to writing. Oral promises that have not been made a part of the written contract are most likely unenforceable. Often, contracts will include “merger clauses” and “modification” clauses so that any part of the agreement not contained within the contract is treated as if it never existed. Any modification to the contract will likely have to be in writing and signed by both parties.
  4. It is important to pay attention to the contract language and the terms. Do not overlook and consider the number of years, conditions for renewal, termination, severance, non-competes, non-solicitations, and many other factors that may often receive insufficient attention.

Make certain you understand how malpractice insurance will be handled and tail insurance should things not work out.

The most important aspect of contract review is: understanding the terms of the contract, being informed about what you are signing into, and avoiding surprise, shock, and additional costs and expenses litigating issues after the fact.

If you need assistance with reviewing or drafting your contracts, find yourself involved in a contract dispute, or have other business-related legal matters, please do not hesitate to contact business attorney John M. Frazier Jr. to navigate the landmines associated with your medical agreements.