Academy of Chiropractic

Quickie Podcast 1235
Infrastructure 256 I

From the Desk of Dr. Mark Studin
Academy of Chiropractic

Preamble: Many of the issues I bring to you are very small, yet each issue is just that, an issue. If you take care of the small issues, then you will be able to build and more importantly, focus on the bigger issues...a larger practice and more family time. -Mark Studin 2006

"Getting paid from a lawyer's perspective"

 

Dr Studin: We just finished recording the fifth module of educating the lawyer and it was all about what doctors do that prevent you from getting paid and what lawyers do that is unethical that gives the doctor leverage over the lawyer to get paid. why it's so expensive to bring a case to trial, to get the doctor to understand etc.

Guest Dr: it was a great discussion back and forth between understanding there's a limited pie of insurance money that's available that needs to be equitably split to recognize the hard work that doctors do with their patients, but also recognize the cost of running a case and running a law practice and how it's not, all one sided. And that sometimes the money just isn't enough to pay everybody as much as we want. The bottom line is we talked about ethical relationships between chiropractors and lawyers that they deal with. And the information is a lot of things from the legal profession that many doctors may not have known, a lot of them things from your profession that lawyers need to know and how you can communicate it.

Dr Studin: Now the other thing is with doctors also have to understand is we talked a lot about the requirements that doctors are clueless up that they must have within their documentation so that they can get paid. Because as a rule, that's the doctor's leverage, the written words on your authorizations and releases, and then how to use those and how to leverage the attorney who's unethically to ensure you get paid fairly and timely.

Guest Dr: then we really went into the insights as to what is ethical conduct by a lawyer and what is not. And I think, you may have been a bit surprised on some of the discussions that we've had.

Dr Studin: I was very surprised, unhappy in some cases ecstatic in others. even before the last module that we're going to record, on helping the doctor To gain some assurance that they don't have to work for free. Now the lawyer has the same uncertainty because if you lose a case or you can't bring a case to trial, because after you sign your patient, you pay for an investigator, you pay for reports. You might found out there was a witness which says the opposite of what your patients said. You have no case or there's no liability or causality is wrong. And here you are spending $5k, $10k, $20,000 to bring a case to get to settlement or trial only to find that you have nothing and you have no recovery.

Guest Dr: or defendant may have no insurance, in certain circumstances that makes the case and viable to be able to collect. So even if you have a good case, would it make sound like a good case on its face Sometimes they fall apart because it turns out whoever the legal responsible entity is, there's no Avenue to get money out of them and actually collect it. So there's a lot of issues that come into play and risk that's taken upon by the legal profession and taking these cases and indirectly by your profession, if they don't have adequate health insurance or med pay or some other form of coverage, you're also taking risks on some of these cases and we all have to recognize it's a cost of doing business when things don't go well. But the thing we can do something about and the purpose of these modules is to educate the lawyers by the doctors educating them, and also educate the doctors. So that you know when is it an appropriate cost of doing business to write something off or when are you being unfairly taken advantage of.

Dr Studin: The course is called educating the lawyer. It's going to be six modules and it gives you a tremendous amount of knowledge and knowledge is power to be able to get paid, have ethical relations with the attorneys, educate the attorneys to get the attorneys to always consider you first. This course teaches you how to do all of those things. I don't think there was ever been a program like this in the history of our industry, which really balances the equation from both sides and having an ethical relationship regarding finances and, it's not a course on how to get paid. It's of course it had to have that ethical relationship. So at the end of the day, both parties walk away as whole as possible, best serving their clients and patients. And I think that's the best way of putting it.

Guest Dr: I agree. 

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