Medical professionals often wear multiple hats. In addition to practicing medicine and standing up to a hostile malpractice climate, many doctors are also small business owners who must navigate New Jersey’s challenging business laws. Think of your dentists, general practitioners, and gynecologists.
NJCJI recently launched a small business task force to learn more about this set of needs. Our recently-released survey, conducted by the Monmouth University Polling Institute, examined the impact of New Jersey’s civil justice climate on a variety of small business types. And as we know, the results of this survey were alarming: approximately one-in-five small businesses have been sued in the last five years, and another one-in-three expect to be hit with a lawsuit in the near future. Doctors and other medical professionals weren’t included in the survey sample, but I’d be willing these numbers would be skewed unfavorably if they were.
It’s a difficult climate for any small business to operate in New Jersey. Doctors are leaving New Jersey for greener pastures at an alarming rate. When they have to balance the burdens of weak evidentiary standards and a hostile Consumer Fraud Act against ever-increasing malpractice premiums and costs of doing business, it’s hard to blame them.