Defense Attorneys for Licensed Professionals

Howell, Buchan & Strong - Professional License Defense Attorneys in Florida

Critical Steps for Investing in Healthcare Facilities

May 18, 2022
Est read time: 4 minutes

If you’re a company, general counsel, or an investor that wants to open a new clinic or other AHCA-licensed healthcare facilities in Florida, Howell, Buchan, & Strong is the firm investors lean on to understand and navigate the complexities of the process. In this blog, we'll outline the Five Key Steps to Opening or Buying a Healthcare Facility.

Since the nature of opening or buying a facility is complex and riddled with potential pitfalls, a qualified legal team can anticipate and prepare for these pitfalls and steer you through them successfully. The most important move you make is engaging with a trusted legal team skilled in contracts, appeals, licensing, and administrative law. In the State of Florida, Howell, Buchan, & Strong is uniquely qualified with a team experienced in all aspects of buy/sell agreements.

Learn More: Explore more in our blog about the Considerations and Risks of Buying or Selling a Health Care Facility.

5 Key Steps for Opening or Buying a Healthcare Facility

Your legal team should be able to confidently walk you through the key steps or stages of opening or buying an AHCA-licensed facility in Florida. The process includes various aspects you want to be aware of before you enter into any agreements for buying or opening a facility.

  1. Drawing Up the Buy/Sell Agreement. When you enter into an agreement for a buy/sell, you should proceed with caution. Often a buy-sell agreement is conducted without checking with a lawyer on the administrative part of the transaction. The seller and the buyer each have their own lawyers for the transfer of the property. The seller’s attorney may even draft an “As Is” agreement for the sale. An inventive seller’s attorney may also add a “hold harmless” provision to the agreement. Unfortunately, these types of provisions do not release the seller from its obligations to AHCA. The seller may have some remedy in a civil action but that just entails more litigation and lawyer’s fees. The better way to handle these agreements is to contact an experienced administrative law attorney for assistance with the buy-sell agreement. Read More: Learn more in our recent blog as we cover proactive ways to Avoid HIPAA Issues When Buying or Selling a Healthcare Business.
  2. Review of the Real Estate Contract. The drafting of these contracts related to the property purchase agreements should be completed by an experienced contract attorney. Visit our Contract Drafting and Review page to understand the complexities of these legally binding documents.
  3. Applying for the License. The State of Florida has regulatory laws healthcare investors must understand. Your legal team should be well-experienced in working with these state boards to help you prepare for the regulatory steps. From anti-trust and anti-kick-back rules, these regulatory frameworks are meant to set basic standards that protect all parties in the agreement. But there are complex issues at play with licensed healthcare facilities both buyers and sellers need to be aware of to protect themselves, their livelihood, and the vendors or partners involved. Dig Deeper: We’ve outlined these regulatory laws in our blog titled, Regulatory Laws Healthcare Investors Must Understand.
  4. Challenging Denials of License. Licensure issues can occur before the sale, but most issues occur after the buy/sale which is why an administrative law attorney is essential as you enter into these agreements.
  5. Overcoming Background Checks for Investment Team. Often an expectation of buy/sell agreements is the inclusion of background checks for those involved in the business deal. These can be met with challenges if one or more of the investors has a criminal record. Our team is equipped and experienced to help your team navigate the background checks and the outcomes.

Our Relationships, Location & Experience

The main HBS location is in Tallahassee, the central location of AHCA. There's value in this proximity and in the relationship we have with the inner workings of this agency. But beyond location, our teams have decades of experience working with AHCA and successfully representing clients and investors in buy/sell agreements.

“Our team is experienced in all aspects of drawing up and reviewing contracts and the demands of the regulatory and licensing process. The nature of having a legal team stacked with that experience means you can enter into these agreements confidently,” says Jeffrey Howell, partner with HSB.

Our Team of Healthcare Facility Transaction Attorneys

We’re proud to have a full-scope legal team experienced in all aspects of healthcare facility licensing, buying and selling, and change of ownership applications. Each attorney brings a unique level of competence and experience to these transactions that buyers and sellers lean on before entering into any discussions or agreements.

Have questions about your need for legal representation with buying or selling healthcare facilities? Contact the law firm of Howell, Buchan & Strong at 850-877-7776 to set up a FREE, no-obligation consultation. Our firm represents physicians, nurses, psychologists, and other licensed professionals statewide. 

Orlando (407) 717-1773 | Tallahassee (850) 877-7776 | Tampa (813) 833-6726 | Sarasota (941) 779-4348 | Cape Coral (239) 671-4243

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