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ContractsCounsel has assisted 58 clients with physician employment agreements and maintains a network of 67 employment lawyers available daily. These lawyers collectively have 15 reviews to help you choose the best lawyer for your needs.

What Is a Physician Contact Review?

A physician contract review is when an employment lawyer specializing in healthcare reviews your contract and gives you guidance on the terms of the agreement. Since a physician contract is also an employment contract, physicians should handle this contract carefully since they work in a high-risk industry and often have high compensation.

The physician employment contract governs how a physician practices and often details terms like salary, incentives, insurance, work hours, and non-competes are included in the document.

A contract review can help you understand:

  • Your expected role and responsibility at the practice
  • How you will be compensated for your work and what benefits you may receive
  • Details on how you may be terminated
  • Insurance requirements by you or the employer
  • Any restrictions to where you may be able to work after leaving

In general, a physician contract review will give you a clear understanding of what you will be signing with your new employer, and allow you to learn areas you may be able to negotiate in your favor.

Here is an article with a helpful guide for a physician contract review.

What Does a Physician Contract Typically Include?

There are many types of employment contracts, and all are worth reviewing by a lawyer, however, a physician’s employment agreement has certain legal ramifications that make it a prime candidate for physician lawyer review.

Below are some common terms you will find that can serve as a checklist to make sure they are addressed in the contract:

  • Compensation. How much will you be paid? When will you be paid? Is your compensation salary, hourly, or commission-based?
  • Benefits. What benefits are included in the contract? Examples of common benefits include health insurance, disability insurance, and retirement savings plans.
  • Work Schedule. What are the hours that you are expected to work? What is the call schedule?
  • Vacation. How much vacation time are you entitled to?
  • Scope of Practice. What is the scope of your practice? Are there any restrictions on the type of patients you can see or the procedures you can perform?
  • Location. Where will you be working?
  • Noncompete Agreement. Does the contract include a noncompete agreement ? If so, what are the restrictions?
  • Insurance Coverage. Will you need to have an insurance policy? What will the employer provide in terms of malpractice insurance?
  • Termination Clause. What are the circumstances under which the contract can be terminated? How much notice must be given before the contract is terminated? What are the consequences of terminating the contract early?

If a physician is not satisfied with their current contract, they may be able to negotiate with their employer to change some of the terms and conditions. However, it is important to remember that once a contract is signed, it is legally binding.

Here is an article about understanding employment contracts.

Additional Terms to Look for When Reviewing a Physician Contract

Here are some additional terms you should pay attention to when reviewing your physician contract:

  • Sign-on bonus. You may be able to negotiate a sign-on bonus, which is a one-time payment made to you for agreeing to work for the practice.
  • Relocation expenses. If you are moving to take the position, be sure to have the practice reimburse you for your moving expenses.
  • Student loan repayment. Some practices offer to repay your student loans as an incentive to join their team.
  • PTO. Paid time off includes vacation days, holidays, and sick days. Be sure to know how many days you are entitled to and what the policy is for accruing and using PTO.
  • CME allowance. Continuing Medical Education credits are important for physicians to maintain their license. Many practices will offer a certain amount of money to cover the costs of CME courses.
  • Disability Insurance. This type of insurance protects your income if you are unable to work due to an injury or illness.
  • Life Insurance. Life insurance is a benefit that can help your family financially if you die.
  • Retirement plan. Many practices offer a retirement savings plan, such as a 401(k), as an employee benefit.
  • Productivity Bonus. This is a bonus that is given to physicians based on the number of patients they see or the amount of revenue they generate for the practice.
  • Quality Bonus. This is a bonus that is given to physicians based on the quality of care they provide, as measured by metrics such as patient satisfaction scores or health outcomes.
  • Paid Call. If you are required to be on call, be sure to understand how much you will be paid for your time.
  • Medical Directorship. If you are interested in becoming a medical director, look for a clause in your contract that outlines the requirements and compensation for this role.
  • Academic Appointment. If you are interested in working at a teaching hospital or medical school, look for a clause in your contract that outlines the requirements and compensation for this role.
  • Clinical Trial Participation. If you are interested in participating in clinical trials, look for a clause in your contract that outlines the requirements and compensation for this role.
  • Research Stipend/Support. If you are interested in pursuing research, look for a clause in your contract that outlines the stipend or other support that the practice will provide.
  • Stock Options. Some physicians have an employment agreement that includes stock options, which give you the opportunity to purchase shares in the practice at a discounted price. This can be a great benefit if the practice does well financially.

When it comes to your career, it's important to be mindful of the contracts you sign. An employment contract review specifically for physicians can help ensure that you are getting a fair deal and that you understand the terms of your agreement.

Here is an article with a comprehensive guide to physician contract reviews.

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How Long Does it Take to Review a Physician Contract?

Reviewing a physicians contract can take anywhere between one day to a week, depending on its length, complexity, and how busy the lawyer is at the time. If the client requires the lawyer to make redlines, it will increase the time needed to work on the project.

After reviewing the agreement, a client may require the lawyer to negotiate on their behalf. Negotiations can take weeks in some instances, so it is good to make sure you plan for that.

Should You Have a Physician Contract Legally Reviewed?

It is not required that you have any employment contract reviewed. However, it is generally in your best interest to contact a lawyer for physicians, as they will help protect your legal rights given their experience in the industry.

A legal review can help ensure that you understand the terms of your contract and that the contract is fair. Given it is a large transaction (i.e., employment contracts are typically worth a lot of money in the form of compensation), a small investment to make sure you are set up for success is worth it.

Here is an article explaining why it is important to have a physician contract legally reviewed.

How Much Does it Cost to Review a Physician Contract?

The cost of reviewing a physician contract varies depending on the length and complexity of the contract and the hourly charge of the physician contract lawyer. Below is some fee data from ContractsCounsel on physician agreement reviews:

According to ContractsCounsel's pricing data, the cost to review a physician contract is $440 [1].

Average Cost Data from Lawyers on ContractsCounsel

All Physician Employment Agreement Projects:
$470.00
Drafting a Physician Employment Agreement:
$600.00
Reviewing a Physician Employment Agreement:
$440.00

Based on 22 recent projects completed by lawyers on ContractsCounsel.

Last updated: 6 May, 2024

Post a project in ContractsCounsel’s marketplace to receive flat fee bids from lawyers for your project. All lawyers have been vetted by our team and peer-reviewed by our customers for you to explore before hiring.

References

  1. ^ Based on real pricing data from ContractsCounsel's marketplace. Last updated 6 May, 2024.

ContractsCounsel is not a law firm, and this post should not be considered and does not contain legal advice. To ensure the information and advice in this post are correct, sufficient, and appropriate for your situation, please consult a licensed attorney. Also, using or accessing ContractsCounsel's site does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and ContractsCounsel.


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