How to Find an HPSO Insurance Attorney to Defend You in a Complaint Against Your Massage Therapy License

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law
We often hear from clients with professional licensing complaints and Department of Health investigations who have insurance coverage with Healthcare Providers Service Organization  (HPSO) Insurance but could not find a lawyer who accepts it. They come to us after disciplinary action has been taken against their license to appeal or reverse it.
Our law firm and attorneys have represented individuals covered by HPSO Insurance for over 25 years. HPSO covers and pays for legal matters in various areas, such as administrative hearings, professional license complaints, investigations, depositions, HIPAA violations, and more.
Under these policies, the insurance company will pay the legal fees and costs related to your defense. However, usually, you are required to locate and retain the appropriate attorney to represent you.
Tips to Help Find and Retain an Experienced Attorney to Defend You.
1. Seek and retain an attorney who accepts your insurance, whether it is HPSO Insurance, NORCAL Insurance, The Doctors Company (TDC) Insurance, CPH & Associates Insurance, Pharmacists Mutual Insurance, Philadelphia Insurance, or another national company. This will ensure that you have an attorney who will give you the lower rates the insurance company had negotiated and will have a good working relationship established with your insurance company. If an attorney with our firm cannot represent you, we will try to find one who will.
2. The primary qualification for any attorney you hire to represent you should be their experience working with health professionals in the same field. If the attorney is not familiar with your area of health practice or the type of hearings involved, it may be difficult for that attorney to get up to speed to represent you properly.
3. If you come across an attorney who states that they will help you make a statement to the investigator or assist you in the investigation but does not appear at hearings, this is the wrong attorney. You need an attorney that can represent you from start to finish.
4. You also want to retain the services of an attorney who has appeared before your professional board or state licensing authority in investigations and hearings, especially formal or informal administrative hearings.
5. Often, you will encounter an attorney who only wants you to accept a consent order, stipulation, or settlement agreement. Remember that these are all merely “plea bargains,” by signing this, you will be pleading guilty to whatever offenses are charged. In most cases, you will be innocent and must request a formal administrative hearing to prove this instead of signing the consent agreement (or order).
6. You don’t need an attorney in your city, state, or location. Almost all the work on the case can be done by telephone and e-mail. You usually have only one meeting or hearing with the agency, and depending on the type of hearing or meeting, it could be located in many different locations. Our attorneys will travel to those locations for meetings and hearings with you.
7. Beware of attorneys who hold themselves out in Internet advertising as health attorneys or professional licensed defense attorneys but are other types of attorneys. We see this greatly from medical malpractice plaintiff attorneys, criminal defense attorneys, and attorneys who sue insurance companies. Be sure you retain only an attorney who concentrates their practice on defending those in the specialty of massage therapy and physical therapy, board of physical therapy and massage therapy complaints, investigations, and hearings.
8. If you can’t find an attorney to meet your immediate needs through an Internet search, you may contact your insurance company or professional association and ask if they have a list of attorneys who can do the legal work you require.
For example, you may reach Healthcare Providers Service Organization (HPSO) at (800) 982-9491; you can reach CPH & Associates at (800) 875-1911 or (312) 987-9823; you can access additional policy info from American Massage Therapy Association Insurance (AMTA) by going to their website here: https://www.amtamassage.org/massage-insurance/overview
To learn more about professional liability insurance and why you should have it, read my prior blog here.
Contact Health Law Attorneys Experienced in the Representation of Massage Therapists.
The attorneys of The Health Law Firm provide legal representation to massage therapists and physical therapists, physicians, dentists, nurse practitioners, pharmacists, massage therapists, mental health counselors, registered nurses (RNs), assisted living facilities (ALFs), home health agencies (HHAs), nurse practitioners, lab technicians, occupational therapists, physical therapists (PTs), social workers, physician assistants, psychologists, and other health professionals in many different legal matters.
Services we provide include representation before your professional board in DOH investigations, administrative hearings, civil litigation, professional licensing matters, defense of allegations concerning HIPAA privacy violations and medical record breaches, and many others.
In cases in which the health care professional has professional liability insurance or general liability insurance, which provides coverage for such matters, we will seek to obtain coverage from your insurance company and will attempt to have your legal fees and expenses covered by your insurance company.  If allowed, we will agree to take an assignment of your insurance policy proceeds to submit our bills directly to your insurance company. We also defend health professionals and health facilities in general and business litigation matters.
To contact The Health Law Firm, please call (407) 331-6620 or toll-free (888) 331-6620 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 Avenue, Suite 1000, Altamonte Springs, FL 32714, Phone: (407) 331-6620 or Toll-Free: (888) 331-6620
Attorney Positions with The Health Law Firm. The Health Law Firm always seeks qualified attorneys interested in health law practice. Its main office is in the Orlando, Florida, area. If you are a member of The Florida Bar and are interested, forward a cover letter and your resume to: [email protected] or fax to: (407) 331-3030.
“The Health Law Firm” is a registered fictitious business name of and a registered service mark of The Health Law Firm, P.A., a Florida professional service corporation, since 1999.
Copyright © 2023 The Health Law Firm. All rights reserved.

Massage Therapists-You MUST Obtain License Complaint Defense Coverage Insurance

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law

I am often called on to represent massage therapists accused of sexually molesting a client during the course of the massage or for offering sex to an undercover agent. Most often, this type of case comes to us from a complaint filed with the Department of Health, the umbrella agency over the Board of Massage Therapy. Often the complaint is a made-up one or is based on mistaken identity or an incorrect perception on the part of the customer.

The tragic part of this story is that often, the case could be defended and the charges against the massage therapist dismissed, but the massage therapist does not have the money to retain a good, experienced attorney. As a result, the massage therapist must either give up their license or be found guilty, revoked, lose their board certification, and no longer has a job or profession. It is very inexpensive, often less than $100 per year.

That is why we say that all massage therapists absolutely should purchase professional liability insurance that includes coverage to pay for the legal defense of a complaint filed against the massage therapist’s license. Not all professional liability insurance does provide this type of coverage, so you must check and make sure your does.

Professional Liability Insurance with Professional License Defense Coverage is Cheap–Buy It.

Professional liability insurance with professional license defense coverage is very inexpensive for a massage therapist. It often costs less than $200 per year. When you have it, it will pay for a lawyer to defend you right from the very start, when you first find out there may be a complaint against you, even if no lawsuit is filed.

Yet, so often we see a massage therapist falsely accused of a wrong-doing, laid of from their job, without any money, and therefore unable to hire a lawyer to defend themselves. This type of insurance can be invaluable. It can save your license and your career.

If You Have a Policy, Check it for this Type of Coverage.

Even if you have a professional liability insurance policy, it may not contain this type of coverage. Check your policy. Call or write the company to find out if you are not sure. If it does not have professional license defense coverage, sometimes called “State Licensing Board Complaint Coverage” ask if you can purchase a “rider” to your insurance policy that does provide such coverage, even if no law suit is filed. If your company does not offer such coverage at all, then immediately purchase a different policy with a different company.

Employers: Make Your Employees Purchase Insurance Coverage.

If you employee massage therapists or you own a massage establishment, then you should require your employees to purchase such insurance coverage and have your company or establishment included as a “named insured” on the policy. Again, these policies are very inexpensive for the massage therapist to purchase, so you might even consider paying for such insurance if the employee claims they can’t afford it.

Often when a client or customer is thinking about suing a company or a massage therapist, their attorney will tell them to file a complaint with the licensing board. Then the licensing board will do all the investigating needed on the case and will even hire experts to review the case. Later, if the licensing board rules that the massage therapist (or massage establishment) is at fault, the plaintiff’s attorney can use all of that information in a civil law suit against the massage therapist of the employer.

You can prevent this by ensuring that you have legal defense from day one.

There Is Nothing That Prohibits You from Having Two Policies.

If your present insurance policy does not include professional license defense coverage or if it only includes a small amount ($5,000 or $10,000) consider purchasing an additional policy from a different company.

Companies That Offer Professional License Defense Coverage for Massage Therapists.

Following are the names of the professional liability insurance companies that we have been able to find that offer good professional license defense coverage at a low rate as of January 2023:

1. CPH Insurance–In our opinion, the best coverage that is available. It includes “State Licensing Board Defense Coverage” up to $35,000 for defense of a licensing board complaint. Customers can increase this limit to $75,000 for an additional $75 premium, or to a $100,000 limit for a $100 additional premium (which we recommend doing). See https://www.cphins.com/

2. HPSO (Healthcare Providers Service Organization) Insurance–Great coverage at a low price. See https://www.hpso.com/

3. CM&F Group Insurance. See https://www.cmfgroup.com/contact-us/

4. AMTA (American Massage Therapy Association) Insurance (but may only provide coverage while you remain a member of this organization). See https://www.amtamassage.org/massage-insurance/overview

5. ProLiability Insurance, powered by AMBA (Association Member Benefits Advisors, LLC). See https://www.proliability.com/professional-liability-insurance/

There may be others out there and if you come across one, please let me know. I am always looking to expand my list.

For more information and ways that The Health Law Firm can help in licensure matters, visit our Video Q&A section or visit our website’s Areas of Practice page.

Contact Health Law Attorneys With Experience Handling Licensing Issues.

If you are applying for a massage therapy, dental, or health care license, have had a license suspended or revoked, or are facing imminent action against your license, it is imperative that you contact an experienced healthcare attorney to assist you in defending your career. Remember, your license is your livelihood, it is not recommended that you attempt to pursue these matters without the assistance of an attorney.

The Health Law Firm routinely represents massage therapists, dentists, nurses, physicians, medical groups, clinics, and other healthcare providers in personal and facility licensing issues.

To contact The Health Law Firm please call (407) 331-6620 or toll-free (888) 331-6620 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. Suite 1000, Altamonte Springs, FL 32714, Phone: (407) 331-6620 or Toll-Free: (888) 331-6620.

Current Open Positions with The Health Law Firm. The Health Law Firm always seeks qualified individuals interested in health law. Its main office is in the Orlando, Florida, area. If you are a current member of The Florida Bar or a qualified professional who is interested, please forward a cover letter and resume to: [email protected] or fax them to (407) 331-3030.

“The Health Law Firm” is a registered fictitious business name of and a registered service mark of The Health Law Firm, P.A., a Florida professional service corporation, since 1999.
Copyright © 2023 The Health Law Firm. All rights reserved.

 

 

By |2023-02-02T11:57:13-05:00February 2, 2023|Categories: Massage Law Blog|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |0 Comments

Finding a Healthcare Providers Service Organization (HPSO) Insurance Attorney to Defend you in a Complaint Against Your Pharmacist or Pharmacy License

George IndestBy George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law
Many pharmacists or their pharmacies carry professional malpractice insurance through Healthcare Providers Service Organization (HPSO) or one of the other similar professional liability insurance companies. What they may not realize is that this insurance will pay for their legal defense expenses if there is a complaint filed against their pharmacist license or the pharmacy’s license. It will also pay for legal defense expenses if they receive a subpoena for records, if they are required to attend a deposition, or if they are accused of violating HIPAA or a client’s medical confidentiality.

Under this type of policy, the insurance company will pay the legal fees and other costs related to your defense or legal representation. However, you will be required to locate and retain the appropriate attorney to represent you in the matter.

What to Look For When Retaining an Attorney to Defend You.

1. The primary qualification for any attorney you hire to represent you should be his or her experience in working with health professionals in the same field. If the attorney is not familiar with your area of health practice, with the type of legal proceeding you have, or with your professional licensing board, it may be difficult for that attorney to represent you properly.

2. If consult with an attorney who states that she or he will help you make a statement to the investigator or assist you in the investigation, but will not agree to appear and represent you in hearings, then this is the wrong attorney. You need an attorney that can represent you from start to finish.

3. Seek and retain an attorney who accepts the insurance that you have, whether it is HPSO Insurance, CPH & Associates Insurance, Philadelphia Insurance, Pharmacist Mutual Insurance Company (PMIC), Trust Management Services, Philadelphia Insurance, Firemans Fund, or another national company. This will ensure that you have an attorney who will give you the lower rates the insurance company has negotiated and will have a good working relationship established with your insurance company. If an attorney with our firm cannot represent you, we will try to find you an attorney who will.

4. You also want to retain the services of an attorney who has appeared before your professional board or professional licensing authority in investigations and hearings, especially in formal administrative hearings.

5. Often you will come across an attorney who only wants you to accept a consent order, stipulation, or settlement agreement. Remember that these are all merely plea bargains and you will be pleading guilty to whatever offenses are charged. This is teh easy way out and often the easy way is not the right way. IF you plead guilty then, from that point on, you are guilty. In most cases, however, you will actually be innocent of the charges and will need a formal administrative hearing in order to prove this.

6. You don’t necessarily need an attorney who resides in your city, state, or location. Almost all the work on the case will be done by telephone and e-mail. You usually have only one meeting or hearing and, depending on what type of hearing it is, it could be located in many different locations. Our attorneys will travel to those locations for meetings and hearings.

7. Beware of attorneys who hold themselves out in Internet advertising as health attorneys or professional license defense attorneys but are really some other type of attorneys. We see this a lot from medical malpractice attorneys, criminal defense attorneys and attorneys who sue insurance companies. Be sure you get an attorney who concentrates his or her practice in defending those in the specialty of pharmacy and in board of pharmacy complaints, investigations, and hearings.

8. If you can’t find an attorney to meet your immediate needs through our firm or an Internet search, you may contact your insurance company or professional association and ask if they have a list of attorneys that can do the legal work you require.

For example, you may reach Healthcare Providers Service Organization (HPSO) at (800) 982-9491; you can reach Nurses Service Organization (NSO) at (800) 247-1500; you can reach CPH & Associates at (800) 875-1911 or (312) 987-9823; you can reach Pharmacists Mutual Insurance Company (PMIC) at (800) 247-5930.

Contact Health Law Attorneys Experienced Investigations of Pharmacists and Pharmacies.

The attorneys of The Health Law Firm provide legal representation to pharmacists, pharmacies, prescribing physicians, dispensing physicians and nurse practitioners, and other health providers in pharmacy board complaints and investigations, Department of Health (DOH) investigations, Colorado DORA investigations, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) investigations, Medicare and Medicaid audits, Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) investigations, and other types of investigations of health professionals and providers. To contact The Health Law Firm, please call (407) 331-6620 or (850) 439-1001 and visit our website at www.TheHealthLawFirm.com.

In cases in which the health care professional has professional liability insurance or general liability insurance which provides coverage for such matters, we will seek to obtain coverage by your insurance company and will attempt to have your legal fees and expenses covered by your insurance company. If allowed, we will agree to take an assignment of your insurance policy proceeds in order to be able to submit our bills directly to your insurance company.

We also defend health professionals and health facilities in general litigation matters and business litigation matters.

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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“The Health Law Firm” is a registered fictitious business name of and a registered service mark of The Health Law Firm, P.A., a Florida professional service corporation, since 1999.
Copyright © 2020 The Health Law Firm. All rights reserved.

By |2020-02-04T16:39:04-05:00February 4, 2020|Categories: Pharmacy Law Blog|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |0 Comments
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