A healthcare attorney is a lawyer who specializes in legal cases that involve the medical profession. These lawyers can provide representation to doctors, patients, and/or medical facilities. Here’s what you need to know about healthcare attorneys:
What type of background do healthcare attorneys have?
Healthcare attorneys typically began their education by getting an undergraduate bachelor’s degree. However, they typically continue their education by earning a master’s degree in law.
In order to be admitted into law school, an individual must pass the LSAT exam. After an individual goes through law school, they will need to pass the bar exam before they can practice as a healthcare attorney. Theoretically, it is possible for an individual to take the bar exam and get licensed without attended law school. However, this is exceedingly rare, and only a few states allow this at all.
Usually, lawyers will gain experience in the field prior to specializing in healthcare law. This usually involves working for another legal practice that operates in healthcare law, which has already been established. As a result, most healthcare attorneys have had plenty of experience, and this helps to ensure that they will be able to offer the best possible services to your business.
Who needs a healthcare attorney?
If you are a business owner in the healthcare field, you will need to have an attorney to represent your company if you face a lawsuit. However, they can do more than just represent your company in court. In fact, they can help to ensure that your practice always complies with public health laws in your area.
While you will need one if you run a business in the healthcare industry, the specific type of healthcare attorney that you’ll need depends on the type of practice that you have. However, it will always be important to find a skilled attorney for your business. Here’s why you’ll need a skilled and experienced medical attorney for various types of practices:
Healthcare attorneys for doctor’s offices
If you are a doctor with a private practice, it’s important to consult a healthcare attorney to determine what the best practices for opening and running your practice are. Not only that, but you should make sure that you have a healthcare attorney who will represent you in court if you are ever sued. This will help to minimize your losses. Here are a few examples of ways that these attorneys can prevent losses:
- They can defend your practice against lawsuits, which can save you a large amount of money.
- They can help to ensure that you comply with all local regulations, and this will reduce the chances of your practice being seen as negligent. This will make it much less likely that your company will face a lawsuit.
- A healthcare attorney can help you create policies that reduce your chances of facing a lawsuit.
- They can advise you on malpractice insurance policies, which can ensure that you have the best possible coverage for your practice.
Healthcare attorneys for clinics and hospitals
Some healthcare attorneys offer services that are geared towards clinics and hospitals. These lawyers will be especially skilled at dealing with malpractice lawsuits, which are more likely to arise in these settings due to the large number of patients. Furthermore, the conditions being treated in these settings are often particularly serious, and this increases your risk of having to deal with a lawsuit.
If you own an urgent care clinic or hospital, it will be even more important to have access to quality representation from a healthcare attorney. That’s because you will be seeing a large number of patients, and there will typically be multiple doctors working at the practice or hospital as well. In many cases, there will be dozens of doctors who work at a large medical facility.
Not only do you need to have quality representation from a healthcare attorney, but you’ll need to make sure that all doctors are covered by malpractice insurance. This will help to ensure that any malpractice lawsuits you face are covered, and this can save your company thousands or even millions of dollars. Always ensure that the malpractice coverage you have covers up to 1 million dollars per incident, and always follow the recommendation of your healthcare attorney.
Healthcare attorneys for long-term care facilities
Healthcare attorneys can represent long-term care facilities that are facing a lawsuit, help these facilities comply with all regulations, and help them take steps to reduce their chances of facing a lawsuit. In most cases, long-term care facilities will have access to a team of multiple lawyers.
How do you pick the right healthcare attorney as a business owner?
Not only do you need to make sure that you read plenty of reviews, but it’s important to make sure that you read reviews from healthcare businesses that are similar to yours. For instance, if you run a clinic, it’s best to read reviews from other healthcare clinics in your area if possible. Here are a few tips that can help you pick the best possible healthcare attorney for your practice:
- Schedule a consultation with any healthcare attorney that you are considering, which will help you determine if you have chosen the right attorney. Fortunately, most healthcare attorneys offer a free consultation.
- Compare the reviews of different healthcare attorneys in your area in order to choose the best one for your business.
- Become familiar with the lawyer’s track record, including knowing what types of lawsuits they have defended their clients against in the past.
- If possible, speak with previous clients about the quality of the services that the lawyer offers.
How hiring a healthcare attorney will improve your practice
If you are facing a lawsuit, a healthcare attorney can protect you from losing thousands or even millions of dollars as a result. In fact, a skilled lawyer who specializes in healthcare can help you either beat the case or reduce the amount of compensation that you have to pay. Not only that, but they can also help to protect your reputation and medical license.
However, there are more reasons why a healthcare attorney can protect your business than providing representation in court. They can give you advice that can help you avoid legal problems, which can allow you to save money over time. Here are a few examples of ways that a healthcare attorney can help your practice save money:
- A healthcare attorney can provide advice on situations where you would be more likely to suffer a lawsuit, and you can take steps to avoid these situations. For instance, they can ensure that you are thoroughly informed on local health regulations.
- Due to the coronavirus pandemic, it is more important than ever to ensure that your facility is a sanitary environment. A healthcare attorney can help to ensure that you follow all guidelines during the pandemic, which can mitigate your risk of being sued.
Healthcare attorneys work with patients and non-profit organizations too
Many healthcare attorneys work with patients, non-profit organizations in addition to doctors, hospitals, long-term care facilities, and clinics. If you are a patient who is suing a medical facility, you will need to find a healthcare lawyer who specializes in these cases. Luckily, there are many lawyers with this specialty in most cities. Here are a few things that these attorneys can do for non-profit organizations and patients:
- Healthcare attorneys for non-profit organizations can offer representation during a lawsuit, and they can help these organizations take actions to prevent potential lawsuits.
- Most major non-profit healthcare organizations employ attorneys to advise them on how to avoid a lawsuit, and they’ll hire skilled healthcare lawyers to represent them if they ever find themselves facing one.
- They can tell patients whether or not they’re likely to be able to file a successful malpractice case against a doctor, long-term care facility, or hospital.
How to choose a healthcare attorney as a patient
If you are suing a medical facility for malpractice, it’s important to choose a lawyer who has experience with the type of malpractice case that you’re filing. For instance, if you are suing a hospital, the case will be very different than filing a lawsuit against an individual physician.
However, the circumstances are not always so clear. For instance, if an individual doctor in a hospital makes a mistake that involves medical equipment, it may be challenging to determine whether it was the doctor’s mistake or faulty equipment. Fortunately, a skilled healthcare attorney will be able to make this determination. Here are some other things to consider when you’re choosing a healthcare lawyer as a patient:
- Consider the specialty of medicine that the doctor or hospital you’re suing practiced.
- Consider whether the incident took place at a clinic, long-term care facility, or hospital.
- Consider whether the doctor or facility was treating you for an emergency or non emergency situation, which can make a difference in terms of the lawyer that you choose.
Healthcare attorneys for long-term care facilities
In most cases, access to multiple healthcare attorneys will be part of their legal plan. The same is true for hospitals and clinics. This legal team will typically have experience with a wide range of situations that can present themselves to a long-term care facility. Here are a few examples of situations that a long-term care facility will need a lawyer for:
- Situations where a patient sues the facility for malpractice
- Incidents where a resident suffers an injury as a result of a fall
- Other accidents that occur at a nursing home facility
In addition, lawyers for a long-term care facility will help to provide advice on how to prevent a lawsuit from happening in the first place. Here are a few examples of suggestions that they are likely to provide:
- A healthcare attorney will provide suggestions on how to minimize the risk of falls, which could result in a lawsuit.
- They’ll be able to provide advice that can help you figure out the best approach to take if a situation has occurred, which could lead to a future lawsuit.
How much does it cost to hire a healthcare attorney?
If you will be hiring a healthcare attorney, you are probably wondering how much you can expect to pay. The answer to this question depends on whether you are hiring a healthcare lawyer as a patient, physician, or the owner of a larger medical facility. In addition, it depends on what you are hiring them for and whether you have legal insurance or not.
How much will a large medical facility pay for legal coverage?
If you are seeking comprehensive legal coverage as a long-term care facility, hospital, or clinic, you can expect to pay far more than you would as the owner of an individual practice. Here’s what you need to know about the expense of legal insurance coverage for a long-term care facility, hospital, or clinic:
- On average, you’ll pay around $8,500 annually per doctor in the Los Angeles area. However, this figure is around $25,000 in the Philadelphia area. Practices in the Miami-Dade region can expect to pay as much as $47,000 annually on average.
- Your track record will make a difference. If you have a history of malpractice lawsuits, you can expect to pay significantly more for coverage.
- You will pay more for more extensive coverage, which will often cover a larger number of lawyers than other plans. Also, these plans typically cover a wider range of services.
However, individual lawsuits that you need to face will cost you more money. While malpractice insurance will cover compensation and a certain portion of legal expenses, you will still need to pay a certain amount out of pocket for a healthcare attorney in Los Angeles to represent you.
On average, your healthcare attorney will cost around $300 to $400 per hour of services, which will include time that they spend working on the case when they’re not with you. Therefore, the amount that you can expect to pay will vary significantly from one case to another, and the portion that will be covered by insurance varies significantly from one plan to another.
If you are a patient, how much will a healthcare lawyer cost?
Unlike medical practices, most patients will not have legal insurance that covers their expenses. However, some patients who are filing a lawsuit do have a legal plan. If this applies to you, the cost of hiring a lawyer for the case may be reduced. However, you’ll still have to pay a certain portion of the expense. Here’s what you need to know about the cost of hiring a healthcare attorney as a patient:
- The cost of healthcare attorney services partly depends on your region. In some regions, the expense could be several times higher than it would be in another area.
- The amount that you pay will depend on the nature of the case. On average, the cost of representation as a patient will be between $300 and $400 per hour. However, the amount of time that the attorney will spend working on the case varies significantly from one case to another.
- While some lawyers will require payment upfront, others will only require payment if you win the case. If you win the case, these healthcare attorney services will take a certain percentage of the compensation that you get.