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  • Contract Review Service: Contract Diagnostics, Dennis Hursh or someone else

    I'm a current PGY4 derm resident that is in the process of interviewing and looking for jobs. I absolutely plan on getting my contract reviewed by a lawyer but I was curious what experience people have had with some of the names mentioned on the WCI website.

     

    Specifically:

    -Contract Diagnostics: advertiser on the site. I've heard good things from a couple colleagues but also there were a few items missed.

    http://www.contractdiagnostics.com/

    -Dennis Hursh: author of the Final Hurdle, who Dr. Dahle said was the best book he's read on contracts. Slightly pricier but I'm willing to pay to get the best benefit.

    https://pahealthlaw.com/product/physician-employment-contract-review-copy/

    https://www.whitecoatinvestor.com/the-final-hurdle-a-review/

    -Kelso Law: the lawyer has a physician for a wife and gave a good presentation at a recent conference I was at.

    https://kelsolaw.com/

     

    I'm leaning towards either of the first two, especially as WCI has recommended both (although only one is an advertiser), but not sure which to go with. Also, each of the options offers different "packages" which adds another element to the discussion. They range from a brief review, to a thorough review and unlimited phone calls, to the more expensive package where they will do the negotiating on your behalf. Just curious what other people's experience has been and which makes the most sense to go with. In general, the difference between the low/medium packages to the higher packages is about $1000. Obviously, if they can negotiate more than the $1000 additional fee then it is worthwhile investment.

    Finally, how best to handle multiple contracts as that will surely be my situation? Do most of it myself and have a professional step in at the end or pay them to review multiple offers right up front, or somewhere in between. I currently have 6 interviews, and while I'm sure some will be immediate "no", there could be a few contenders that could make things pricey!

    Thanks!

     

     

  • #2
    It's funny because the title of the next thread is "suing over bad online reviews"

    Comment


    • #3
      I'm not sure there is anyone who has used all of those services, so it's going to be tough to get a really good recommendation.

      Rather than trying to find "the best" review, I would submit that the point is to get the contract reviewed by someone. That puts you so far ahead of someone that never got the contract reviewed at all that it isn't even comparable.
      Helping those who wear the white coat get a fair shake on Wall Street since 2011

      Comment


      • #4
        I don't think you could go wrong with Contract Diagonstics.  I used them myself and couldn't have been more pleased with the service I received.

        Comment


        • #5




          I’m not sure there is anyone who has used all of those services, so it’s going to be tough to get a really good recommendation.

          Rather than trying to find “the best” review, I would submit that the point is to get the contract reviewed by someone. That puts you so far ahead of someone that never got the contract reviewed at all that it isn’t even comparable.
          Click to expand...


          I think this is spot on. Physician contracts esp for new grads aren't that complicated. You're really paying someone to look for a few really rare but terrible things and to help you understand anything that is counter-intuitive or atypical.

          I have no data for this but my guess would be that 97-98% of docs never really have a contractual issue during their career. Those that do my guess is that it's mostly around non-compete clauses in smaller markets.

          Comment


          • #6







            I’m not sure there is anyone who has used all of those services, so it’s going to be tough to get a really good recommendation.

            Rather than trying to find “the best” review, I would submit that the point is to get the contract reviewed by someone. That puts you so far ahead of someone that never got the contract reviewed at all that it isn’t even comparable.
            Click to expand…


            I think this is spot on. Physician contracts esp for new grads aren’t that complicated. You’re really paying someone to look for a few really rare but terrible things and to help you understand anything that is counter-intuitive or atypical.

            I have no data for this but my guess would be that 97-98% of docs never really have a contractual issue during their career. Those that do my guess is that it’s mostly around non-compete clauses in smaller markets.
            Click to expand...


            i guess it depends on what you define as a contractual issue.  MsBonnie was frustrated at pay formula during maternity leave earlier this year, i'm aware of organizational issues we've had issues with paternity leave, disability, non compete, etc.   i'm also not sure whether they include payment analysis in their service, which certainly might be of value.  at the same time, if it is a large organization, the amount of flexibility to adjust the contract will be limited.  when i was in private practice, issues i personally experienced included buy in calculations, time to buy in, junior/senior partner clauses, calculations for payments exceeding salary, how a/r would be handled in cases of departure.

            as they say, you don't get what you deserve, you get what you negotiate.

            having said that, i've never been on the receiving end of contract review service.  i'm not sure i would look favorably on someone using them to do the negotiating.  using them to review is fine.  but i work for a large place which won't make many adjustments to the contracts anyways.  

             

             

            Comment


            • #7




              i guess it depends on what you define as a contractual issue.  MsBonnie was frustrated at pay formula during maternity leave earlier this year, i’m aware of organizational issues we’ve had issues with paternity leave, disability, non compete, etc.   i’m also not sure whether they include payment analysis in their service, which certainly might be of value.  at the same time, if it is a large organization, the amount of flexibility to adjust the contract will be limited.  when i was in private practice, issues i personally experienced included buy in calculations, time to buy in, junior/senior partner clauses, calculations for payments exceeding salary, how a/r would be handled in cases of departure.

              as they say, you don’t get what you deserve, you get what you negotiate.

              having said that, i’ve never been on the receiving end of contract review service.  i’m not sure i would look favorably on someone using them to do the negotiating.  using them to review is fine.  but i work for a large place which won’t make many adjustments to the contracts anyways.

               

               
              Click to expand...


              Fair points. I made your last point in the comments section of the recent blog post on negotiating.

              To be fair, I work in academics in a hospital based field (EM) in a city that is as saturated w/ docs as anywhere in America, so my experience with this is different than some.

              Comment


              • #8
                @JK: Who did you decide to go with?

                 

                Also, I've heard that you should be using a lawyer familiar with the state/local laws of the area you are going to work in. Not sure how important that truly is, but since you're searching right now, maybe make sure your contract is reviewed by someone in the state you want to work in rather than where you residency is.

                Comment


                • #9




                  @jk: Who did you decide to go with?

                   

                  Also, I’ve heard that you should be using a lawyer familiar with the state/local laws of the area you are going to work in. Not sure how important that truly is, but since you’re searching right now, maybe make sure your contract is reviewed by someone in the state you want to work in rather than where you residency is.
                  Click to expand...


                  i doubt contract/labor law changes that much state to state

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    My 0.02 cents.  Since this is going to be your first job out of residency and since most new grads do not stay at their same gig after 5 years, I would make sure that the person (best would be lawyer from your state of practice) who does the review has legal expertise in terms of explaining and analyzing the clause for terminations, non competes, malpractice coverage after leaving the position, etc. This is especially true if you are not familiar with these terms yourself.

                    Money is important and getting appropriately compensated is important but if you have another 30 years or so of practice, its really your future employment mobility/ options that is most at stake. Don't get locked down early.

                    Comment


                    • #11




                      I’m a current PGY4 derm resident that is in the process of interviewing and looking for jobs. I absolutely plan on getting my contract reviewed by a lawyer but I was curious what experience people have had with some of the names mentioned on the WCI website.

                       

                      Specifically:

                      -Contract Diagnostics: advertiser on the site. I’ve heard good things from a couple colleagues but also there were a few items missed.

                      http://www.contractdiagnostics.com/

                      -Dennis Hursh: author of the Final Hurdle, who Dr. Dahle said was the best book he’s read on contracts. Slightly pricier but I’m willing to pay to get the best benefit.

                      https://pahealthlaw.com/product/physician-employment-contract-review-copy/

                      https://www.whitecoatinvestor.com/the-final-hurdle-a-review/

                      -Kelso Law: the lawyer has a physician for a wife and gave a good presentation at a recent conference I was at.

                      https://kelsolaw.com/

                       

                      I’m leaning towards either of the first two, especially as WCI has recommended both (although only one is an advertiser), but not sure which to go with. Also, each of the options offers different “packages” which adds another element to the discussion. They range from a brief review, to a thorough review and unlimited phone calls, to the more expensive package where they will do the negotiating on your behalf. Just curious what other people’s experience has been and which makes the most sense to go with. In general, the difference between the low/medium packages to the higher packages is about $1000. Obviously, if they can negotiate more than the $1000 additional fee then it is worthwhile investment.

                      Finally, how best to handle multiple contracts as that will surely be my situation? Do most of it myself and have a professional step in at the end or pay them to review multiple offers right up front, or somewhere in between. I currently have 6 interviews, and while I’m sure some will be immediate “no”, there could be a few contenders that could make things pricey!

                      Thanks!

                       

                       
                      Click to expand...


                      You absolutely get your contract reviewed by an attorney.  Preferably someone local or at least very familiar with your particular state's laws.

                      Hursh obviously wrote the book on this.  I've read his book, and it's a good book.  I would feel confident if I hired him.  You may be able to find a local attorney cheaper than him, but he may be the most efficient.  I'd also feel pretty good about the attorney dr's wife, I don't have any knowledge about him specifically but you could call him up and feel it out.

                      I would be interested to hear about the items missed by contract diagnostics.  A couple "items missed" could be nothing, or it could be the whole contract.  Personally, despite the positive reviews about CD on here, I would shy away from them as they are not qualified to render a legal opinion on a contract.

                      Regarding multiple contracts, as you mention you shouldn't need to get 6 contracts reviewed, but perhaps only two or three.  This is something you can ask about in the initial consult.

                      Comment


                      • #12







                        I’m not sure there is anyone who has used all of those services, so it’s going to be tough to get a really good recommendation.

                        Rather than trying to find “the best” review, I would submit that the point is to get the contract reviewed by someone. That puts you so far ahead of someone that never got the contract reviewed at all that it isn’t even comparable.
                        Click to expand…


                        I think this is spot on. Physician contracts esp for new grads aren’t that complicated. You’re really paying someone to look for a few really rare but terrible things and to help you understand anything that is counter-intuitive or atypical.

                        I have no data for this but my guess would be that 97-98% of docs never really have a contractual issue during their career. Those that do my guess is that it’s mostly around non-compete clauses in smaller markets.
                        Click to expand...


                        IMO any physician who is subject to a non-competition agreement has a contractual issue.

                        These days the contracts can get so long and convoluted that there are many issues that seem like non-issues until one day the doc finds out there is one, e.g., something the doc invented on the his or her own time belongs to the employer, he or she can't moonlight, can't invest in a particular business, or something more common like a lack of tail coverage when moving or at retirement.

                         




                        i doubt contract/labor law changes that much state to state
                        Click to expand...


                        :lol:   Good one!!!

                         

                        Comment


                        • #13




                           

                           




                          i doubt contract/labor law changes that much state to state
                          Click to expand…


                          Good one!!!

                           
                          Click to expand...


                          Am I wrong about that? I'm certainly not an attorney, ************************ I'm not even a very good doctor.

                          Comment


                          • #14







                             

                             




                            i doubt contract/labor law changes that much state to state
                            Click to expand…


                            Good one!!!

                             
                            Click to expand…


                            Am I wrong about that? I’m certainly not an attorney, ************************ I’m not even a very good doctor.
                            Click to expand...


                            Really I'd say you're both right and wrong.  The general tenets behind labor law and ideas behind contracts, what contracts look like, what the goals of the parties are and what they're are trying to do is going to be the same or very similar state to state.  Where they differ is in the details and the execution.  Probably the biggest example is the non-compete, which might be anything from completely illegal or completely open, with many states regulating them heavily, each with their own bright lines and/or nuance.

                            Some states are looking out for the doctors, some states are looking out for the hospitals, some states are mainly concerned with cost of healthcare, others are more concerned with availability of care, etc. etc.... and then each state has its own legislature filled with people who may or may not be adept at writing law.

                            Also apart from specific laws, certain jurisdictions may be more or less likely to enforce certain contracts, be more favorable for the employer vs the employee, etc.  There are some places where you can have a perfectly fair and legal contract and a court may be unwilling to enforce.  Other places you may have very unfair, hugely burdensome contracts that courts will strictly enforce.

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