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  • Deposition Fees

    I am a resident and I have been asked to give a deposition for a case in which I am not named.  Is it expected that I charge for my time?

    A few other concerns: What is the going rate for a resident?  How do I report this on taxes & should I form my own LLC?

     

    Thanks!

  • #2
    Yes, you are expected to charge for your time. I have no idea of the going rate for a doctor. You will report your payment as earned income on your 1040 (schedule C-EZ, most likely), reduced by any related expenses (mileage, for sure). This is a golden opportunity for a SOLO-401k.
    Working to protect good doctors from bad advisors. Fox & Co CPAs, Fox & Co Wealth Mgmt. 270-247-6087

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    • #3
      Talk to your residency and risk management. I was asked to give a deposition for a patient in residency. It had absolutely nothing to do with my care of the patient, but they were my PCP patient in residency and it was related to the patient's motor vehicle collision that occurred years before my care.  Anyway, I was told that I could not be paid for my time because of Medicare and residency compensation rules. I am not sure in your specific case, but it is different because you are a resident. I would talk to your program director and risk management to be sure everything is done correctly.  While I did not get paid they were required to block a day of clinic, then the morning of the deposition the lawyer decided he did not want the deposition of a resident. So I got a free day in residency, which was a win in and of itself.

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      • #4




        Talk to your residency and risk management. I was asked to give a deposition for a patient in residency. It had absolutely nothing to do with my care of the patient, but they were my PCP patient in residency and it was related to the patient’s motor vehicle collision that occurred years before my care.  Anyway, I was told that I could not be paid for my time because of Medicare and residency compensation rules. I am not sure in your specific case, but it is different because you are a resident. I would talk to your program director and risk management to be sure everything is done correctly.  While I did not get paid they were required to block a day of clinic, then the morning of the deposition the lawyer decided he did not want the deposition of a resident. So I got a free day in residency, which was a win in and of itself.
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        Agree. Its unlikely you will actually be deposed and even more unlikely you get paid. Unless youre an expert (you're not by definition as a resident) you will not be paid. If you're part of the treating team than your deposition would be related to your care as a treating physician. Therefore it needs to be handled as above and treated properly. If you had zero contact with the patients care process you would never get deposed.

        Use your risk management team as the valuable resource they are and learn about your role as the treating physician in the case and how that impacts what and how you respond to questions as opposed to an expert giving an opinion.

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        • #5
          I've had quite a bit of exposure to this.

          Assuming you are TREATING DOC and not named and you are a resident I would tell you to charge $200/hr with a 2 hour minimum and require payment in full 7 days before the dep which is nonrefundable if they cancel. The attorneys will cancel on you the day before after you trade out of your call to get there. It's absolutely amazing how little regard they will have for your schedule.

          Remember that you are not a defendant and you're not in any kind of trouble. I reply to emails with my fee structure and also say something like "if the attorneys cancel or reschedule the dep with <48h notice my next availability is..." and then I pick a date usually 3-4 months down the road.

          Attendings should chart $500/hr w/ 2 hour min for dep, same rules on pre-payment.

          I have had plaintiff's attorneys say that my fees are unreasonable and in that case I just refused to negotiate. If they want to subpoena you and get a court order to order your testimony they can do that, it's not criminal on your part or anything like that to refuse to accommodate an attorney in a personal injury case.

           

          All of that aside, as a resident if you get asked to do this I would try your best to do so. It's a chance to get the feel of a dep when you have no skin in the game. You learn about how lawyers view things which is in a different solar system than the way we do.

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