A healthcare transaction lawyer is an investment into your future. If you want an overview as to what a healthcare transaction lawyer is, finding the right one, and what to expect in terms of cost, please read our article “Healthcare Transactions Lawyers: What You Need to Know,” from The Ambulatory M&A Advisor.
So why should you appoint one? The answer depends on what you are trying to accomplish. A healthcare transaction automatically includes complex rules and regulations that the transaction must conform to. For those who are physician owners, many of these are issues that they will only encounter once or twice in their lifetime. Therefore, it’s important to make sure to have a team assembled that will put in you the best position to achieve your desired outcome. One of the members needs to be a healthcare M&A lawyer.
What a Healthcare Transaction Lawyer Knows
A healthcare transaction lawyer refers to a very narrow specialization. You may find lawyers who specialize in healthcare and those who specialize in transactions, but it does not mean all of them specialize in healthcare transactions, whether it is in the ambulatory M&A space or more general.
Healthcare law covers a wide range of practices, and transactions are only one aspect of it. Transactional law focuses on not only buying and selling, but contracts, practice formations, joint ventures, etc. Even an attorney who has been successful in selling businesses will more than likely not know all the different elements that healthcare law introduces into a transaction.
If you engage a healthcare transaction attorney, then you know you are dealing with someone who is well-versed in the legal implications related to medical related transactions. That person is up-to-date on all ever-changing laws and how they may impact your particular healthcare transaction.
Buyer and Seller Representation
Various attorneys may choose to focus on either buyer or seller representation, or both. This means there are healthcare transaction attorneys for both sides in a transactional deal.
The realm of healthcare M&A is highly regulated, and those involving themselves in such transactions need someone on their team who understands deeply those regulations in place by the Anti-kickback Statute and similar legal obstacles. A healthcare transactions lawyer can provide advice to ensure that you as a client are well protected.
Most people only think about healthcare transactions in terms of buying and selling part or all of a healthcare business. However, healthcare transactions lawyers specialize in many other aspects of M&A, such as joint ventures, strategic alliances, partnerships, employment agreements, entity formations, real estate leases and raising capital, to name a few. All these situations involve complex and multifaceted legal documentation.
A healthcare transaction lawyer can help with the legal terms of the agreement for a joint venture, provide assistance in corporate structuring and reorganization, or be involved in documenting and structuring loans.
Ignorance is Not Bliss
The repercussions of going without the proper and appropriate legal counsel in a healthcare transaction can run deep. The fact remains that what might make good and common sense in dealings with ordinary business transactions might just be illegal in the world of healthcare.
Ignorance is not a valid excuse.
Being engaged with a solid business lawyer who is involved in other aspects of your business does not ensure you infallible counsel on healthcare rules and regulations. Perhaps you found someone who specializes in transactions, but is not fully versed in healthcare law. This does not exempt you from having to pay the penalty if something goes awry.
Hiring an attorney who specializes in healthcare transactions is the easiest and only definite way to ensure that your transaction complies with healthcare rules and regulations.