In the context of health care compliance, attorneys are often hired to assist with Physician Agreements.  Physician Agreements are basically employment contracts between an organization and the newly-employed physician.

Fundamentals of contract law, labor law, Stark law, anti-kickback law, and arbitration issues can arise out of a poorly drafted Physician Agreement.  Here are some common problem areas (though not an exhaustive list) that both the organization and the physician will want clearly set forth in the Physician Agreement:

  • Who are the parties?
  • What is the term of the contract? (Start date, termination date)
  • What are the physician’s job duties? (Schedule, job description)
  • What are the employer’s responsibilities?
  • How will the physician be compensated?
  • Benefits? (Time off, vacation)
  • Who pays for CME?
  • Who pays for Malpractice insurance and “tail coverage”?
  • Is there a Non-Compete, Non-Solicitation or Confidentiality Agreement?
  • Is outside employment permitted?
  • How can the Agreement be terminated?
  • Will the physician have continuing access to records?
  • Who controls the physician’s research and writing results?
  • Recruitment incentives (Moving allowances, etc.)
  • How will disputes be resolved, and who will pay the costs and attorney’s fees?
  • Miscellaneous boilerplate provisions

When dealing with Physician Agreements, newly-hired physicians should seek legal advice to be sure that a particular contract complies with the law and is in their best interests.


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