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Employment and Benefits in Health Care

Health care employers face unique employment and employee benefits questions.

Can hospitals provide different employee benefits for call-in nurses? How do you ensure compliance with the Fair Labor Standards Act? Do various agreements and/or grants result in an organization being a "federal contractor" that has to comply with affirmative action obligations? How can a hospital provide for additional deferred compensation for employed physicians and what is "reasonable compensation" for those employees? How do you provide for a "seamless" transition for employees when a hospital purchases a physician practice? How do you distinguish between personnel records, medical records and peer review records related to your employees? These and many more questions are unique to health care entities in a time of industry reorganization and in the wake of pressures of declining reimbursements.

The employee benefits, labor and employment lawyers in Ice Miller’s Workplace Solutions Group counsel tax-exempt, for-profit, and governmental health care providers across the nation. We work with health care clients to maintain a positive and productive workforce and to assist them with employee benefits with an emphasis on retirement structures that are unique to tax-exempt and governmental employers such as Section 403(b) retirement plans and Section 457 deferred compensation plans, which are often used to provide additional deferred compensation to executives and physicians. We understand that health care providers are under constant economic pressure due to reduced reimbursements and we work to find practical and affordable solutions to employment and employee benefits issues.

Representative Experience

  • Physician contract review for both physicians and hospitals
  • Affirmative action obligations and compliance programs
  • OSHA responsibilities and compliance
  • Advice on mandatory immunizations for employees
  • Family and Medical Leave Act compliance for employees of affiliated physician groups
  • Analysis and calculation of overtime payments under the Fair Labor Standards Act
  • Countering and avoiding increased union organizing activities in health care
  • Defending employment discrimination and wage and hour lawsuits
  • Deferred compensation plans to encourage physicians to take emergency room call under EMTALA
  • Transitions from traditional defined benefit retirement plans to 403(b) and 401(k) defined contribution structures
  • Employee benefits compliance with the Affordable Care Act and determinations of which categories of employees are "full-time" and should be offered health coverage to avoid penalties
  • On-site health clinic structures within hospitals for employees that comply with ERISA and Internal Revenue Code requirements
  • Advice about the intersection of the HIPAA Privacy Rules between health care entities as providers and employers


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