Healthcare Liability Lawyer
Our Healthcare Liability Lawyers Defend Providers Against Medical Malpractice Lawsuits, Insurance Audits, and Other Claims and Inquiries
Healthcare providers face a variety of liability risks on a daily basis. From interactions with patients to billing and recordkeeping, virtually all aspects of a typical healthcare practice can create exposure to liability. To manage their liability risks effectively—and to overcome issues when necessary—providers and practitioners need an experienced healthcare liability attorney on their side.
At Oberheiden P.C., our healthcare liability lawyers are highly experienced in helping providers and practitioners protect their businesses, their licenses, and their reputations. We represent healthcare clients across the United States in all liability-related matters—from implementing compliance programs that mitigate our clients’ risk of liability to defending against audits, investigations, and claims. Whether you are seeking to proactively manage your healthcare business’s risk or your practice is in jeopardy, our attorneys can help you make informed and strategic decisions while providing effective legal representation.
Healthcare Liability Matters We Handle
What can we do to help you? We provide compliance and defense representation for all healthcare liability matters. This includes (but is not limited to):
Maintaining Compliance to Mitigate Healthcare Liability Risk
One of the most effective ways of avoiding liability is to implement a comprehensive healthcare compliance program. By prioritizing compliance—and ensuring that all partners and personnel have a clear understanding of the business’s or practice’s compliance obligations—healthcare entities can reduce their overall liability risk substantially. At Oberheiden P.C., we develop and help our clients implement custom-tailored compliance programs that address liability risks including:
- Improper patient care practices
- Improper billing practices
- Improper prescription management practices
- Inadequate recordkeeping
- Licensing and registration violations
- Unlawful financial relationships with other providers and practitioners
- Unlawful healthcare marketing practices
While many law firms and other businesses offer healthcare compliance “solutions,” in our experience it is critical for providers and practitioners to work with lawyers who have experience in litigation and enforcement matters as well. This experience provides key insights for developing compliance policies, procedures, and protocols that are designed specifically to address real-world liability risks.
Medical Malpractice Claims
For many healthcare providers, avoiding medical malpractice claims is their top liability-related concern. Facing allegations of medical malpractice can not only lead to civil liability; but, it can also lead to insurance challenges, and in some cases it can lead to licensing or disciplinary action as well.
With these risks in mind, our healthcare liability attorneys take a swift and comprehensive approach to medical malpractice defense. We focus not only on defending against the substantive allegations at issue, but also addressing any liability implications these allegations may have beyond the patient’s (or family’s) medical malpractice claim. Our lawyers work to resolve our clients’ medical malpractice claims without liability whenever possible; and, when it is in our clients’ best interests to settle, we work to minimize our clients’ liability through strategic settlement negotiations.
Licensing and Disciplinary Actions
As noted above, medical malpractice claims will frequently lead to licensing or disciplinary action. In addition to defending our clients against medical malpractice liability, our attorneys also fight to protect our clients’ ability to practice medicine. We provide comprehensive medical license defense representation, including representation for medical board hearings and other related proceedings.
Dealing with the insurance companies is a necessary part of operating in the United States’ modern healthcare system. The insurance companies exert significant influence over how healthcare providers operate, and they reserve broad rights to audit participating healthcare providers’ books and records. These insurance audits can present substantial liability risks, as allegations of unbundling, double billing, and other billing and coding violations can lead to demands for recoupments—and even civil lawsuits in some cases.
Medicare and Medicaid Audits
Federal healthcare billing audits can present substantial liability risks as well. This includes audits conducted by Medicare’s fee-for-service contractors, Medicaid Fraud Control Units (MFCUs), and auditors working for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (under TRICARE) and the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL).
Each healthcare liability lawyer at Oberheiden P.C. has extensive experience representing providers and other businesses in federal healthcare billing audits. When facing these audits, taking a proactive approach is critical for mitigating (if not avoiding) any potential liability. Our lawyers work quickly to assess our clients’ risk, implement effective audit defense strategies, and steer our clients’ audits toward favorable outcomes without the need to file an appeal.
Federal Healthcare Investigations
From medical malpractice allegations to billing audits, various issues can trigger federal healthcare investigations. Similar to federal healthcare audits, these investigations can present risks for substantial liability. But, while auditors can only impose civil liability and administrative penalties (i.e., recoupments and denial of pending claims), federal healthcare investigations can potentially lead to civil or criminal charges.
With this in mind, defending against a federal healthcare investigation requires a multi-faceted approach. When facing investigations, providers and practitioners must address the differing allegations that can lead to civil and criminal charges. For example, while asserting that a billing violation was unintentional may be a viable defense to criminal penalties, acknowledging that a violation has occurred at all can create exposure to civil liability in a federal healthcare fraud case.
Federal Healthcare Enforcement Actions
When a healthcare audit or investigation uncovers evidence of impropriety, this can lead to a federal healthcare enforcement action. Whether an enforcement action is civil or criminal in nature, the liability risks involved will be substantial. The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and other federal authorities devote substantial resources to combatting healthcare fraud, and defending against civil or criminal allegations successfully requires the representation of a team of highly experienced healthcare liability attorneys.
Regardless of the circumstances, if you have concerns about liability as a healthcare provider, practitioner, or business owner, you need to address your concerns proactively. Not only is this almost always the most effective approach, but it is generally the most cost-effective approach as well. At Oberheiden P.C., our attorneys work closely with our clients to help them understand their risks and protect their interests, and we rely on our substantial experience to protect our clients from liability by all means available.
FAQs: Choosing a Healthcare Liability Lawyer for Your Practice or Business
When Should I Hire a Healthcare Liability Attorney?
If you are asking this question, it is worth speaking with a healthcare liability attorney about your practice’s or business’s risks and needs. All healthcare practitioners and business owners need to make informed decisions based on the advice of counsel. In the healthcare industry, making uninformed decisions can be extremely risky, and it can expose both business entities and individuals to substantial liability.
What Factors Should I Consider When Choosing a Healthcare Liability Lawyer?
When choosing a healthcare liability lawyer, there are several important factors you will want to consider. Some of the most important factors include:
- Practice focus (primarily on healthcare, but on other related areas of compliance and defense as well);
- Experience in the healthcare law field (and ideally experience both as a healthcare fraud prosecutor and as a healthcare liability defense lawyer);
- Firm size and resources (you want a firm that is large enough to meet your needs, but not so large that your legal fees will become unmanageable);
- Accessibility and availability (when you are at risk for facing liability, you need ready access to your legal counsel); and,
- History of results (including both results in protecting healthcare clients through proactive clients and results in protecting clients during audits, investigations, litigation, and disciplinary proceedings).
Ultimately, you need to feel confident in your attorney’s ability to represent your practice or business effectively. We recommend scheduling a complimentary initial consultation and speaking with an attorney one-on-one before making your decision.
What Are the Risks of Operating a Healthcare Practice or Business Without Legal Guidance?
The risks of operating a healthcare practice or business without legal guidance are substantial. Healthcare providers and businesses face numerous liability risks every day, and failing to manage these risks effectively can put their practices and companies in jeopardy.
Should I Hire a Healthcare Liability Attorney if My Malpractice Insurer is Handling My Claim?
Yes, even if your insurer is handling the defense of your medical malpractice claim, it is still important to engage your own defense counsel. Your insurance company’s interests won’t necessarily align with your own, so it is critical to have an effective advocate on your side.
Can (and Should) I Hire a Lawyer for a Healthcare Billing Audit or Investigation?
Yes, if you are facing a healthcare billing audit or investigation, you should engage an attorney promptly. These inquiries can lead to substantial liability, and you will need to execute a strategic defense to protect your practice or business (and yourself) to the fullest extent possible.
Schedule an Appointment with a Healthcare Liability Lawyer at Oberheiden P.C.
If you would like to speak with a healthcare liability lawyer at Oberheiden P.C., we invite you to get in touch. To schedule an appointment at your convenience, please call 888-680-1745 or request a complimentary consultation online today.