Law Offices of George W. Bodenger, LLC is a boutique legal practice providing legal services to various types of healthcare providers With over 25 years of experience, we have represented providers in virtually every sector of the healthcare industry (including medical, dental, and veterinary market segments) in a wide range of healthcare regulatory and transactional matters (i.e., purchase/sale of professional practices, senior living facilities/services, urgent care companies, medical spas/aesthetic medicine practices), Medicare/Medicaid reimbursement disputes, as well as healthcare compliance and fraud and abuse enforcement actions (i.e., Anti-Kickback Law, Stark Law, False Claims Act). We have particular expertise in negotiating physician employment agreements. We also have significant background in HIPAA compliance and enforcement matters for providers.
This range of experience and comprehensive understanding of the healthcare delivery system makes us unique in our ability to assist clients in achieving their business objectives while ensuring compliance with relevant healthcare laws and regulations.
Our Firm mission is to provide healthcare legal services at least equal to “big firm” quality standards, at a small portion of the cost and with cost certainty, through low hourly rates, fixed fees, and other creative billing arrangements.
HEALTHCARE CORPORATE & TRANSACTIONAL
We have significant experience with the regulatory, corporate, financial and operational considerations inherent to healthcare transactions. We help our clients to negotiate the complex legal, business, and regulatory issues that govern commercial conduct in the healthcare industry. We are engaged on a regular basis to provide advice and counsel to buyers, sellers and lenders in navigating the healthcare regulatory environment, minimizing risk and maximizing enterprise value. Furthermore, our extensive experience in dealing with the agencies that oversee the healthcare industry, including the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services – Office of Inspector General, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, as well as their state agency counterparts, is very useful in this regard.
We advise healthcare providers, suppliers and vendors regarding a wide range of compliance issues, including such bodies of law as the Federal Anti-Kickback and Stark Laws, HIPAA, as well as licensure, accreditation and certification laws and standards. Our lawyers develop and implement fraud and abuse and HIPAA compliance programs for all types and sizes of healthcare providers and have extensive experience in negotiating and monitoring corporate integrity agreements that result from settlements with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services – Office of Inspector General.
HEALTHCARE LITIGATION & ENFORCEMENT
We represent all types of healthcare providers in investigations and prosecutions brought under the Federal Anti-Kickback Statute, the Stark physician self-referral prohibitions, the False Claims Act and similar state laws. During a government investigation, the difference between a simple billing error, a civil False Claims Act prosecution and criminal indictment often depend upon counsel’s skill and experience in dealing with these issues on a regular basis. We have extensive experience in these matters and are well equipped to effectively counsel our clients in seeking to avoid problems before they occur. If problems do arise, our extensive experience in how the government builds and prosecutes a case enables us to aggressively protect our clients from potential overreaching by authorities; manage the risks inherent in any investigation; and proactively resolve these matters in an efficient and cost-effective manner.
We represent healthcare providers in proceedings involving the enforcement of the HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office for Civil Rights (OCR). Our experience in this area spans defending provider clients in complaints filed with OCR. We work with OCR to gather and review key information to determine compliance by the covered entity. We have assisted in the negotiation and implementation of voluntary compliance programs, corrective action plans and resolution agreements. We have extensive experience in negotiating within the civil monetary penalties (CMP) tiered penalty structure.
It is noteworthy that the HHS Secretary is prohibited from imposing civil penalties (except in cases of willful neglect) if the violation is corrected within 30 days (this time period may be extended at HHS’ discretion). Therefore, “time is of the essence” in responding to potential HIPAA violations. We have been successful in obtaining “no action” letters (meaning no civil penalties assessed) from OCR in numerous cases.
CREATIVE BILLING ARRANGEMENTS
In today’s legal services market, most law firms (both large and small) remain tied to the billable hour. We offer alternative fee arrangements that are designed to ensure that our clients receive the outside expertise that is needed within realistic spending expectations. The following sections summarize the types of fee agreements that we offer to our clients in lieu of traditional billable hour arrangements to provide cost certainty, whenever possible. Through these arrangements, we share financial risk with our clients, demonstrating our commitment to the delivery of quality, cost-effective legal services in an efficient manner.
Fixed Fees – Fixed fee arrangements involve the establishment of a fee that is set at the commencement of a new matter. The fixed fee quote does not fluctuate, regardless of the amount of work performed. We often use fixed fee arrangements in situations where the lifespan of the matter and the amount of work to be performed are relatively predictable. For example, we have experience in providing fixed fees for entities and individuals purchasing or selling medical, dental and veterinary practices. We also provide fixed fee arrangements for various types of opinion letters, and the negotiation of provider employment agreements. In litigation matters, fixed fee arrangements can be established per phase of the case, i.e., a set dollar amount for (1) the first phase of investigation and responding to the complaint, (2) the second phase through discovery, and (3) for the summary judgment motion phase. This type of arrangement can be particularly useful to clients who are making cost/benefit decisions about settlement as the case progresses, because the cost of attorneys’ fees is certain. In addition, we find that fixed fee arrangement challenge our lawyers to be efficient in their use of billable time throughout the life of the case.
Monthly Rates – We also offer fixed monthly fee arrangements, which have proven useful to clients who need ongoing and regular advice and counseling on legal issues during a particular phase of company development or through a particular business cycle. This type of arrangement can cover a very broad range of topics, i.e., fraud and abuse, HIPAA, Sunshine Payment Act, employment matters, etc. In these types of arrangements, we agree to a monthly amount, in consideration for which we address all legal issues that are brought to our attention (excluding major transactions and litigation matters). On a periodic basis, we review the actual number of hours spent with our clients so as to ensure that each party is getting what it needs from the relationship.
Client Loyalty Discounts – We enter into this particular type of arrangement with clients with whom that we work on a regular basis. In these matters, we establish hourly rates which can be reduced in relative proportion to the volume of work performed. For example, we may offer a 10% discount once we reach a level of $50,000 in fees during a given 12 month period.
Performance Bonuses – Although not really an alternative fee arrangement on its own, we are willing to consider a “performance bonus” under any of the types of arrangements described above. The bonus could be tied to a particular outcome—the closing of a deal or a successful settlement of a case, for example—or it could be tied simply to our client’s satisfaction with our client service and the value that we are able to add to a given matter. We have found that our clients appreciate “performance bonus” arrangements because they are only payable when the client is truly pleased with the Firm’s delivery of value.
George Bodenger has represented me for over 20 years, from his time at large law firms through his current small/solo practice platform. During this timeframe, George’s work has resulted in significant financial returns to me and my medical practice. In addition, George is always available whenever I need him. I have called him on many evenings and weekends and he gets back to me immediately, without fail. He is extremely responsive and very knowledgeable in relevant areas of healthcare and commercial law. I strongly endorse George’s legal skills and expertise. George also represents my daughter, who is a newly-minted physician.
David M. Cohen, MD, FCAP
George was my colleague of many years at Duane Morris., LLP, during his tenure with the firm as special counsel and as a young partner. His thorough knowledge and deep experience in the healthcare industry was extremely valuable to our firm, and I brought him into cases with our key clients on a regular basis.
Since George opened his own law firm in 2016, I have referred a number of clients to him when faced with firm conflicts or cases better suited to a small firm. George has consistently performed well as lead counsel in these matters and I am confident that when I send a client to George, he will do fine legal work on their behalf.
Michael M. Mustokoff, Esquire
Chair,. Special Litigation Department, Duane Morris LLP
I have known George Bodenger for fifteen years, and we were colleagues at one of Philadelphia’s largest law firms where George served as the Chair of the Health Law Department. I consider George to be one of the premier health care attorneys in the Mid-Atlantic region. What distinguishes him is his responsiveness, dedication, and deep subject matter expertise stemming from his varied experience representing an impressive array of health care providers and businesses. George’s work experience prior to and during law school in the healthcare consulting practice of Ernst & Young gives him a practical edge in skills over most other health care attorneys who do not fully understand their clients’ business challenges. I strongly recommend George Bodenger.
Richard J. King
Shareholder and Co-Chair, Health Care Department, Stevens & Lee
George has been an integral player in navigating our business through a myriad of challenges over the last few years, both routine and otherwise. His healthcare expertise has been invaluable as he facilitated many contracts, shareholder agreements, and provided in-depth review of complex legal matters. He is timely in his responses and his work product is comprehensive. I highly recommend George for organizations looking to build a personal relationship with Counsel.
Executive Director, The Ambulatory Surgery Center at St. Mary LLC
George represented me in an important matter involving my employment. Throughout the process, George demonstrated a keen knowledge of the relevant areas of law. He was able to determine that additional counsel was needed for our case and found another excellent lawyer to round out the legal team, giving me the best chance to be successful. In addition, I found him to be extremely responsive and resourceful. He always had time for my case, my questions, and was prompt in his replies. He was also able to work effectively with opposing counsel. Going into the case, there was a very low likelihood of a successful outcome for me, but George was able to achieve victory. I cannot imagine someone representing me better than George Bodenger. If someone found themselves in the same circumstances as I did, I would not hesitate to recommend bring their case to Bodenger Law.
Client Name Redacted Upon Request
George was patient, calm, and a voice of reason during negotiations in a difficult situation. He was my advocate and represented me in a fair and robust manner. He knows the health care system extremely well and knows how to be diplomatic when necessary and aggressive when necessary. He is someone you want to be in your corner. I highly recommend him.
Laura Oppenheim, M.D.
I have known and used Mr. George Bodenger for legal issues relating to my medical practice for over 16 years. I found Mr. Bodenger to be available and always responsive to the issue at hand. Mr. Bodenger has a way of making me feel like I am his only client which is very reassuring. There is never an issue too large or too small for him to handle. With great enthusiasm I recommend Mr. George Bodenger for medical related legal matters.
Don A Koenigsberg D.O.