Contracts and Negotiations for Student Optometric Practice Management Association

University of Houston

By Bob Goss, J.D., LL.M.

January 24, 2009

Overview:

This presentation was tailored for optometric doctors and what they should know and understand about contracts.

The presentation discussed the State of Texas requirements for contracts --- know what you are signing, contracts in their simplest form, types of contract health care providers may encounter: real estate/property; employment; business operations; marketing and advertising; patients.


The contract presentation and discussion included breach of contract, items that may be contracted (arbitration, jurisdiction, obligation to reach contract), grounds to challenge a contract (fraud, lack of consideration, unconscionable conduct, each of the state, failure to perform, and illegal).


Dr. Michael Lambert suggested Drs. prepare for difficult clients to have a contract that allows the Dr. to disengage, what the requirements are to give a prescription, the need to provide copies and how long information must be kept, and the requirement or obligation to maintain the records.

Informed consent was also discussed, specifically knowing what this is and how to correctly document that informed consent is accomplished


Employment contracts and Texas were also discussed to include the differences between an employee and an independent contractor.


Finally factors to consider in any employment contract such as covenant not to compete, employee handbooks and finally a presentation of a real life contract that contained over 41 separate covenants was presented.