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I joined the Board & we all got sued.

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  • spotty_dog
    replied
    You can ask the leadership of the nonprofit to share the policy with you? I'm in charge of my PTA's insurance so I got our D&O policy in my email recently. We have a $1M limit and a $1500 deductible. Reading the policy, we'd almost certainly be covered against the kind of claim that was made on PoF. Claims are defined broadly, and exceptions are specific. If in doubt, have a lawyer review the policy?

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  • beagler
    replied
    So what should we be looking for in d&o policy? What made the one pof had not valid for bankruptcy?

    I think the lesson is not to avoid all boards there is some civic good we can accomplish for selected charities. But pick lower risk ones and check the d&o policy for something... anyone help us?

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  • Craigy
    replied
    Same answer.

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  • ReFinDoc
    replied
    What if my name does not show on the list? Only the LLC is a board member? As a member of an LLC, I am not personally liable.

    This is not like professional negligence. I have seen LLCs be owners of Real Estate.

    I don't know...only asking.

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  • Craigy
    replied




    Is it possible to join a board as an LLC?
    Click to expand...


    Then they would name both you and your LLC.

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  • Hatton
    replied


    John Edwards is a great example, reenacting the birth of a child born with cerebral palsy and blaming the outcome on the OB/Gyn. It’s all an act, the science doesn’t support his premise, and as long as he wins and collects millions, he feels he has done good.
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    I have friends who are die hard Democrats who voted Republican because Edwards was on the ticket.  My favorite quote from my trial was "I am sure Dr X did not mean to maim this child but......"

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  • Craigy
    replied




    with lawsuits, it costs them very little or nothing to list everyone as a defendant.  it costs us a lot to get off the list.

     

     
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    On the flipside, they can have their whole case thrown out if they don't list all of the necessary parties.

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  • DocNextDoor
    replied
    I am glad your ordeal is over with, I hope to never have to deal with something similar.

     

    Good idea to get that umbrella policy. With my personal experience, be forewarned the price of that policy will skyrocket when 2 boys get older and have their driver's licenses.

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  • ReFinDoc
    replied
    Is it possible to join a board as an LLC?

    Leave a comment:


  • q-school
    replied
    with lawsuits, it costs them very little or nothing to list everyone as a defendant.  it costs us a lot to get off the list.

     

     

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  • PhysicianOnFIRE
    replied


    My wife works company/defense side, so this is not her bailiwick.
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    That's a relief. The bromance lives on.

    Regarding the plaintiff's lawyers, there are some cases in which they are representing someone with a legitimate case in which a person or entity was harmed by negligent or willful acts of another, but so many others where the outcome was nobody's fault and they're just looking for someone (the wealthier the better) to blame. I don't know how difficult it would be or how much money it would take for me to convince myself I was "doing good" in cases like that, which are all too common.

    John Edwards is a great example, reenacting the birth of a child born with cerebral palsy and blaming the outcome on the OB/Gyn. It's all an act, the science doesn't support his premise, and as long as he wins and collects millions, he feels he has done good.

    Leave a comment:


  • Hatton
    replied
    I was amazed when I went to trial how little it is about the actual facts.  It is simply how they are presented.

    Leave a comment:


  • VagabondMD
    replied










    There were a lot of lawyer-bashing comments on the original blog post, and I wanted to set one point straight. The reason there was a Trustee for the bankruptcy is that there were numerous parties that were stiffed by the Hospital. As such, it is the role of the Trustee to seek compensation for those parties.

    The way that Trustee can have access to all of the documents and personnel, and have a means to recover for these creditors,  is to file a suit and subpoena those potentially responsible. The aggrieved parties have no way of knowing whether the money was lost due to poor business conditions, incompetence and mismanagement or scoundrels who embezzled and stole from the Hospital. This was not a personal attack on our dear PoF, though it undoubtedly felt like it at times, no doubt, but the legal system working to attempt to make the parties that really lost money whole. As they might say in The Godfather, “it’s not personal, it’s business.”

    Disclosure: Married to a lawyer

     

     
    Click to expand…


    Are you sure the author of this reply isn’t married to an interventional radiologist?

    I understand the role of the Trustee. In this case, the Trustee had Board minutes, e-mails, among other information when they filed the lawsuit. Any reasonable person could read through the thick stack of papers and determine that my name only appeared as being present at a maybe a dozen meetings over a ten month period. The guy that I replaced, who was on the Board in the same role but for a longer length of time, wasn’t even named.

    I’m quite confident the only reason I was kept in the lawsuit (and named in the first place) is the MD behind my name. When given an opportunity to dismiss me as they had done for other community members with similarly limited roles, the Trustee’s lawyers refused.

    If I earned my living the way the plaintiff’s lawyers do, by bringing years of misery to people with good intentions that are guilty of nothing but naïveté, I don’t know how I would sleep at night (other than on a pile of money). I’m grateful to have earned money by improving the lives of the people I reach.

    To the lawyer, it might be business. But to the people he or she puts through the wringer, it’s very personal. I wonder what it’s like to be numb to that.

     
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    Hmm. POF and Vagabond MD not besties anymore (I kid).

    But I agree that it’s one thing for the lawyers to go after the business entities but entirely another to go after the individual, particularly in the scenario described here. The former may be “business,” but the latter surely goes well beyond business and is highly personal.
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    No, I hope the Vagabond-PoF bromance will continue. I am completely on PoF's side on this issue. It's BS, it's degrading, it's stressful, it's unnecessary, and it's our system. But to the other side, it's not personal. There is no compassion or emotion.

    My wife works company/defense side, so this is not her bailiwick. I do have a good friend who is a very successful plaintiff's attorney, including med mal, and I have learned a lot about the mindset and the process from him. If he were defending his role as a plaintiff attorney, he would say that he "does good" for the people whom he represents who have been harmed by negligent action by another party. Knowing how and where he lives, I suspect that he sleeps very well at night, believing that he does his best for the clients that he represents and occasionally winning a big case which makes the world a little bit safer (and him a large pile of money, thankyouverymuch).

    I obviously do not know all the details or the mindset of the Trustee, but once the ball gets rolling, there is often little incentive or urgency for the plaintiff side to let someone off if there is any shred of suspicion that there is a case against him/her. In PoF's case, as opposed to the community volunteers, money (from clinical services) was flowing in his direction, and perhaps that is why the Trustee kept him around longer than the others. We will likely never know.

     

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  • Bmac
    replied







    There were a lot of lawyer-bashing comments on the original blog post, and I wanted to set one point straight. The reason there was a Trustee for the bankruptcy is that there were numerous parties that were stiffed by the Hospital. As such, it is the role of the Trustee to seek compensation for those parties.

    The way that Trustee can have access to all of the documents and personnel, and have a means to recover for these creditors,  is to file a suit and subpoena those potentially responsible. The aggrieved parties have no way of knowing whether the money was lost due to poor business conditions, incompetence and mismanagement or scoundrels who embezzled and stole from the Hospital. This was not a personal attack on our dear PoF, though it undoubtedly felt like it at times, no doubt, but the legal system working to attempt to make the parties that really lost money whole. As they might say in The Godfather, “it’s not personal, it’s business.”

    Disclosure: Married to a lawyer

     

     
    Click to expand…


    Are you sure the author of this reply isn’t married to an interventional radiologist?

    I understand the role of the Trustee. In this case, the Trustee had Board minutes, e-mails, among other information when they filed the lawsuit. Any reasonable person could read through the thick stack of papers and determine that my name only appeared as being present at a maybe a dozen meetings over a ten month period. The guy that I replaced, who was on the Board in the same role but for a longer length of time, wasn’t even named.

    I’m quite confident the only reason I was kept in the lawsuit (and named in the first place) is the MD behind my name. When given an opportunity to dismiss me as they had done for other community members with similarly limited roles, the Trustee’s lawyers refused.

    If I earned my living the way the plaintiff’s lawyers do, by bringing years of misery to people with good intentions that are guilty of nothing but naïveté, I don’t know how I would sleep at night (other than on a pile of money). I’m grateful to have earned money by improving the lives of the people I reach.

    To the lawyer, it might be business. But to the people he or she puts through the wringer, it’s very personal. I wonder what it’s like to be numb to that.

     
    Click to expand...


    Hmm. POF and Vagabond MD not besties anymore (I kid).

    But I agree that it’s one thing for the lawyers to go after the business entities but entirely another to go after the individual, particularly in the scenario described here. The former may be “business,” but the latter surely goes well beyond business and is highly personal.

    Leave a comment:


  • MPMD
    replied





    I agree with one of the commentators on your site that said we should have a law that says if you sue and lose, you pay the defendants legal fees.  That would sure discourage a lot of frivolous BS. 
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    It was 5 figures, not 6, but I regularly received invoices from my attorney for hundreds and sometimes thousands of dollars as the lawsuit dragged on.

    I did ask my attorney early on if what you suggested would be an option, a countersuit of sorts. But I guess it doesn’t work that way.
    Click to expand...


    My dad explored counter-suing a med-mal plaintiff's attorney back in the 90s. Never got anywhere. I think in the legal world suing another lawyer for legal malpractice is the equivalent of burning a bridge with a napalm MOAB. I also suspect the standards for legal malpractice are absurdly high and that the line between malpractice and aggressive advocacy for a client is so blurry as to look like it was struck with the aforementioned firebomb.

    Leave a comment:

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