3 Things to Consider Before Firing a Physician

3 Things to Consider Before Firing a Physician

By Naomi Olson

Physician contract termination letter are legally binding papers that outline all of your job obligations. Contracts include termination provisions in addition to wage and benefit specifics.

Both physicians and employers rely on the termination provision in their contracts. It is critical that you grasp every detail of the termination clause before terminating your contract or firing an employee.

It is never simple to fire a physician from your practice. However, there are a variety of reasons why it may be essential. When deciding whether to fire a doctor or another professional, there are three aspects to consider:

What is required in your written contract? 

Although many states are “at-will” states, meaning you don’t need a cause to fire someone, and no notice is necessary, if you have a formal contract, you must respect it. Most provider contracts ask for a 30-day to 120-day notice before terminating “without reason.”

A physician’s employment contract should provide immediate termination if notice of termination without cause is issued. During the notice period, such a clause may compel the payment of compensation and/or benefits. 

When a provider does anything improper, a contract may allow for the prompt termination of an employment arrangement.

While termination due to the loss of a license or a criminal conviction is easy to manage, practices frequently struggle with instances involving unprofessional conduct, activities that harm a practice’s reputation, or failure to submit medical records on time. Make sure your contracts allow the practice to decide whether violations are fairly curable and avoid provisions that offer endless chances to remedy every breach.

It’s difficult to imagine how a provider may violate an agreement. While wide termination clauses can be unjust to a physician, a practice must frequently apply some subjective rules to fire a troublesome physician. For example, fraudulent billing and failing to complete medical records on time are typical grounds for terminations not previously mentioned in provider contracts.

Firing a Physician

Physicians who have been fired are frequently upset. 

You should expect legal threats and protests that the terminated provider is being forced to “abandon” patients. When a practice has numerous doctors and agreements established to let patients know they may obtain the treatment they require, there is a low chance of desertion. Informing patients who inquire about how to contact a physician who has left and arranging for timely and cooperative record transfer goes a long way toward reducing risk on the part of the practice. Of course, enraged physicians may come up with additional legal reasons.

For more info about the importance of frontline workers like physicians in the workplace, visit our page.


It is difficult to predict the future. To safeguard your interests, it is critical to have your employment contract examined by an expert if you desire to terminate the contract.

Terminating a medical contract can have major consequences for the physician and the employer. Both parties need to safeguard their own interests, so it’s vital to know what the other side wants ahead of time.

About the Author

authorNaomi Olson is a CFP® (Certified Financial Planner). She has a severe phobia of bridges and dirty balance sheets. Hobbies: blogging, meditation, and loving Bull Market (my dog).

The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of The World Financial Review.