Medical professionals are required by law to practice medicine to the best of their ability and provide a certain standard of care for their patients. In the event that this does not happen and a physician participates in misconduct, they may be held liable for their actions. This can be done through a complaint to the Office of Professional Medical Conduct (OPMC). Receiving a letter from the OPMC is a very serious matter to happen to a medical professional. Many professionals buy insurance in the event that they face legal issues. However, there are some cases in which medical professionals are uninsured.
Types of Misconduct
When medical professionals get a letter from the OPMC stating that they will be investigating their behavior, they often panic. A professional may receive a letter from the OPMC in the event that a third party filed a complaint about their behavior. Some of the most common OPMC conducts that result in investigations includes:
- Billing fraud
- Substance abuse
- Insurance fraud
- Inappropriate sexual relations
- Medical malpractice
When receiving a letter from the OPMC, it is important that the first thing a medical professional does is contact a medical defense attorney so they can begin working to protect their future.
There are some cases in which physicians do not buy the “tail” of their Claims Made Medical Malpractice Insurance Policy. In the event of this, the physician must enlist legal counsel to defend them in a malpractice lawsuit. When this happens, they may be required to pay a great amount of money for legal defense in malpractice litigation. This may consist of all legal bills, the expenses of the experts, the expenses of the depositions, and any other excess expenses for the case. It is also possible for them to lose the case, along with this money. In addition to this, it is possible that a physician may have to settle a case in some situations. This may require the settlement money to come out of the physician’s pocket.
If a doctor does not purchase enough insurance, they may be held liable even after they retire. Majority of the time, retired doctors do not expect this to happen and are unsure of how to proceed. In the event of this, the doctor should send papers to their former insurance carrier. This is because the carrier may have to provide defense even if they did not purchase the tail end of the insurance. There are some cases in which the insurance company may settle the case on behalf of the doctor. However, the doctor may be liable to repay the insurance company for their coverage. When this happens, the retired physician should seek legal representation to guide them through this process.
Contact our Firm
When a medical professional is accused of misconduct, it is essential that they retain strong legal representation. If you require a medical law attorney for your legal matters, call Paul E. Walker, an experienced New York City OPMC & OPD Lawyer. Please contact the Walker Medical Law firm to set up a free initial consultation.