How to Correctly Respond to a Cyber Attack

As technological advancements increase daily, our dependence on technology continues to positively correlate with this trend. Practices implement technology to streamline administrative tasks, gather patient data, organize and store patient health records, manage finances, and other tasks to maximize overall profitability.  Unfortunately, the recent influx in technology also positively correlates to an increasing concern: the growing number of cybercriminals.
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How to Reduce Workers’ Compensation Expenses

Operating a dental practice is very expensive. Many times, the expenses are associated with workers’ compensation. Below are a list of guidelines and procedures that may help a practice owner reduce workers’ compensation costs and claim exposure:

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Practice Procedures Manual

Before you open your dental practice (or purchase a dental practice), you must have detailed office procedures in place.

Office procedures should address administrative tasks such as:

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Risk Management

Involving staff members in the risk identification process will give you a comprehensive picture of the risks based on different people’s involvement in different areas of your practice. You may also wish to engage the services and opinions of an accountant or a lawyer.

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Dental New Hire Checklist

The single most important task that contributes to the success of a dental practice is hiring the right employee which is a process. If this is done correctly, your practice will certainly have a competitive edge. According to dental statistics on a national level, the average dental practice experiences employee turnover approximately every 18 months.

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Independent Contractor or Employee: What Every Practice Owner Needs to Know

The IRS will review many factors in order to determine whether a worker is an independent contractor or an employee. Some of the factors include (1) behavioral control; (2) financial control; and (3) the relationship of parties.

In each case, it is very important to consider all of the factors regarding an employment relationship.

Behavioral Control

The factors listed above will show whether there is a right to direct or control how a worker performs their required work. A worker that may be considered an employee when a dental practice has the right to direct and control the worker. The practice does not have to actually direct or control the way the work is performed, as long as the employer has the right to direct and control the work.

For example:

Instructions – if a worker receives extensive instructions on how such work should be performed, then this suggests that a worker is an employee. Instructions can cover a wide range of topics, such as (1) how, when, or where to do the work; (2) what instruments or equipment to use; (3) what assistants to hire to help with the work; and (4) where to purchase supplies and services.

If a worker receives less extensive instructions about what should be done, but not how it should be done, they may be considered an independent contractor. For instance, instructions about time and place may be less important than directions on how the work should be performed.

Training – if the practice provides a worker with training about required procedures and methods, this indicates that the practice wants the work to be performed a certain way, and this suggests that a worker may be considered an employee.

Financial Control

The factors below show whether there is a right to direct or control the business side of the practice.

For example:

Significant Investment – if a worker has a significant investment in their work, they may be an independent contractor. While there is no precise dollar test, the investment must have substance. However, a significant investment is not necessary to be considered an independent contractor.

Expenses – if a worker is not reimbursed for some or all of their business expenses, then they may be considered an independent contractor. Especially, if their unreimbursed business expenses are high.

Opportunity for Profit or Loss – if a worker can realize a profit or incur a loss, this suggests that they may be in business for themselves, and that they may be considered an independent contractor.

Relationship of the Parties

The facts below illustrate how the practice and a worker may perceive their relationship.

For example:

Employee Benefits – if a worker receives benefits, such as insurance, pension, or paid leave, this is an indication that they may be an employee.  If a worker does not receive benefits, however, they may be either an employee or an independent contractor.

Written Contracts – a written contract may show the actual intention of the worker and practice. This may be very significant if it is difficult, if not impossible, to determine the status of a particular worker based on other facts.

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