By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law
Doctors, nurses, dentists, health professionals, and health facilities often face legal challenges from many different sources, including federal and state regulators, medical malpractice trial lawyers, hospitals, clinics and colleagues. When faced with a legal problem, the first person they should turn to should be an attorney who is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law.
A Board Certified Health Law Attorney is Your Legal Specialist.
To assist in finding a lawyer who is able to handle particular legal situations and who has expertise in the area of law relating to your legal needs, the Supreme Court of Florida directed The Florida Bar to offer a "Board Certification" program for Florida Bar members. The program is designed to help the public make an informed decision when seeking and selecting a lawyer.
While all lawyers are allowed to advertise, only certified attorneys are allowed to identify themselves as "Florida Bar Board Certified" or as a "specialist." Being certified is the highest level of recognition by The Florida Bar of the competency and experience of attorneys in health law.
A lawyer who is a member in good standing of The Florida Bar and who meets the standards set by the state's Supreme Court, may become a "Board Certified Health Law Attorney."
Not all qualified lawyers are certified, but those who are board certified have taken the extra step to have their competence and experience recognized. According to The Florida Bar, there are only 116 Board Certified Health Law Attorneys in the state.
You can read more about the Health Law Certification process in The Florida Bar Journal.
What is Health Law?
Health law is the practice of law involving federal, state, or local law and rules or regulations regarding the delivery of health care services. In addition to health care provider issues and regulations of providers, health law includes legal issues regarding relationships between and among providers and payors.
The area of health law certification was first approved by the Florida Supreme Court in 1994. It is one of 24 areas of legal practice in which the Supreme Court has allowed attorneys to become certified as “legal specialists.” Once the rigorous requirements are met, an attorney may state that he or she is an expert, legal specialist or board certified in this area of law. Of the 4,559 board certified members of The Florida Bar, there are only 116 Board Certified Health Law Attorneys, certified by The Florida Bar, as of April 2012.
Requirements for Becoming Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law.
To qualify to take the health law certification examination, attorneys must:
1. be members of The Florida Bar for at least five years,
2. be engaged in the full-time practice of law,
3. be substantially involved, at least forty percent (40%), in health law for the prior three years of their practice,
4. complete at least 60 hours of advanced continuing legal education of approved health law credits , and
5. Pass a stringent peer review process.
To become certified in health law, an attorney is also required to pass a rigorous written board certification examination designed to test the attorney’s knowledge, skills and proficiency in the field of health law. All currently certified attorneys must apply for recertification every five years.
Read more on The Health Law Firm’s Board Certified Health Law attorneys here.
You Seek Specialized Medical Care from a Medical Specialist; Seek Specialized Legal Services from a Health Law Specialist.
If you have a medical issue you seek treatment from a physician who is board certified in a medical specialty, such as obstetrics and gynecology, orthopedic surgery, neurology or others. This is because they have superior education, training, knowledge and experience in that area of medicine.
Likewise, when you have a legal problem in the area of health practice, health licensing, health care regulation or other legal situations unique to the health care industry, you should seek legal advice and representation from a legal specialist in health law.
Contact The Health Law Firm to Speak with an Attorney who is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law.
The Health Law Firm currently has two Board Certified Health Law attorneys:
George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M, is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law.
Michael L. Smith, J.D., R.R.T., is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law.
To learn more about all the attorneys at The Health Law Firm, click here.
To contact The Health Law Firm, please call (407) 331-6620 or (850) 439-1001 and visit our website at www.TheHealthLawFirm.com.
About the Author: George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law. He is the President and Managing Partner of The Health Law Firm, which has a national practice. Its main office is in the Orlando, Florida, area. www.TheHealthLawFirm.com The Health Law Firm, 1101 Douglas Ave., Altamonte Springs, FL 32714, Phone: (407) 331-6620.
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