Reason the doctor is seeking an associate?
- Doctor is too busy and wants too reduce his patient load.
- Doctor is busy and wants to reduce work hours, take more holidays.
- Doctor is preparing to retire and wants to sell.
- Doctor wants someone to build practice with buy in opportunity.
- Doctor wants associate to build practice with no buy in opportunity.
- Doctor wants associate to share costs/overhead.
- No start up costs or initial capital required.
- Overhead or costs are a percentage of revenue, not fixed.
- Immediate income and positive cash, although initially small.
- Immediate patient flow, although initially small.
- Location is established, greater opportunity for new patients.
- May become a purchase/buy in opportunity.
- Get to view/learn practice operations/procedures.
- Get to view/learn Doctor’s clinical/treatment style.
- Easy access to second opinion when required.
- Staff is already trained and experienced, also a good info source.
- Access to clinic’s contacts and suppliers.
- Access to reactivate old patient files.
- Access to evening and weekend hours, good for new patients.
- No administrative responsibilities.
- Doctor is responsible for your source deductions.
What should be included in a fair and equitable associateship agreement?
- No ownership, an employee, therefore little influence on issues.
- Income is slow to build, perhaps competing with existing Doctor.
- Income potential is lower than ownership.
- Friction over clinical/treatment style/beliefs.
- Personality conflict with staff, no power to hire/fire.
- May rush into a bad situation/contract and be locked in for years.
- Practice not as busy as you were led to believe.
- Doctor hires you to help build practice.
- Doctor hires you to lower costs and overhead.
- Your dream location for practice is taken during associateship.
A sample associate agreement is available in the Members’ Only area of the web site.
- Always have a lawyer evaluate the agreement before signing.
- Payment should be approx. 50% of all revenues generated for the clinic.
- Revenues should include treatments, reports and products sold.
- Payment % should increase with increasing revenues to a fixed maximum.
- Doctors' hours should rarely overlap, less competing.
- New patients should be evenly shared, unless patient very specific.
- A reasonable non-compete clause.
- A non-solicitation agreement.
- A first right of refusal on the sale of the practice.
- An idemnification and save harmless clause for both parties.
- A probation period for both parties to assure the relationship is fair/equitable.
- Holidays of two-three weeks.
- Not allowed to bring in other associate.
- Doctor responsible for all expenses except licensing and malpractice.