Judge orders spine surgeon, practice to pay $9K fees for personal injury business model: 3 things to know

Written by Laura Dyrda | July 25, 2018 | Print  |

The way a Georgia-based spine surgeon and practice interacts with plaintiff lawyers in personal injury cases has come under scrutiny and resulted in a nearly $9,000 fee, according to the Daily Report.

Here are three things to know:

1. The surgeon and practice developed a business model for treating personal injury patients, which the defense attorneys in one case labeled a "de factor joint business venture" with the plaintiffs. The defense claimed the surgeon and practice "specialize[d] in helping personal injury patients maximize their recovery" and a U.S. District Judge agreed, ordering the group to pay a $8,970 fee.

2. The spine practice denies those claims, stating the group aims to cooperate with patients' attorneys in a "highly professional manner" and maintained that the group provides the "best possible medical care" to all patients.

3. In addition to treating personal injury patients, the group offers payment options for patients, including a lien on potential litigation recovery. The defense argued this arrangement meant the surgeon had a financial stake in the outcome of the case, while the spine group's attorneys argued their model is a common industry practice. Regardless of the litigation outcome, patients are still responsible for their medical bills.

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California spine, neurosurgeon indicted for allegedly accepting $40M in kickbacks

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