Ronald W. Chapman

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Health Care Attorney in Miami, FL

Chapman Law Group
 | 701 Waterford Way, Suite 340
Miami, FL 33126
Phone: 305-712-7177
Selected To Super Lawyers: 2021
Licensed Since: 1985
Practice Areas:
  • Health Care (20%),
  • Civil Litigation: Defense (30%),
  • Personal Injury - Medical Malpractice: Defense (20%),
  • Criminal Defense: White Collar (20%),
  • Administrative Law (10%)
    Attorney Profile

    Attorney Ronald W. Chapman, M.P.A., LL.M., is the founding shareholder, president and CEO of Chapman Law Group, a national healthcare law firm with offices in Sarasota and Miami, Florida; Troy, Michigan; and Los Angeles, California. A top-ranked trial lawyer with 36 years of experience in healthcare law, Mr. Chapman provides exceptional counsel and support to healthcare providers and health industry professionals. He is one of the nation’s top practitioners in:

    • Professional Liability and Malpractice Defense, such as medical malpractice, claims of gross negligence, wrongful death, and disputes over standard of care
    • Health Care Compliance, including HIPAA/HITECH, False Claims Act concerns, health care compliance program formation, audits and appeals, and regulatory compliance
    • Health Care Fraud Defense and Criminal Defense, involving overprescribing, DEA investigations and registration revocation, drug diversion and trafficking, Medicare/Medicaid fraud, home health fraud, and Stark Law
    • Medicare Qui Tam/Whistleblower Actions, concerning healthcare fraud, illegal self-referrals, kickbacks, overbilling/upcoding, false claims, and relator representation
    • Professional Licensing and Regulatory Issues, for Florida and Michigan health care providers facing license suspension, administrative hearings, investigations/complaints, impairment program referral (HPRP, IPN, and PRN), emergency suspension orders, and orders compelling exam
    • General and Business-to-Business Litigation, such as contract disputes, business formation and breakup, officer/director liability and disputes, and non-compete agreements
    • Pharmacy Law, including DEA/FDA inspections and registration, licensure and disciplinary issues, National Practitioner Data Bank matters, and criminal/civil/administrative defense
    • Health Care Employment Issues, concerning credentialing/staff privileges/peer review, NPDB disputes, contract review, VA health care employment issues, and unemployment compensation appeals
    • Correctional Healthcare Law, for litigation involving claims of deliberate indifference, failure to monitor, failure to train, excessive force, improper procedure, and unlawful detention
    • Corporate Transactions, for ownership (acquisition, sale, and closure), business formation and operating agreements, managed care contracting, Medicare enrollment and opt-out, practice expansion, and practice management matters

    Mr. Chapman is one of the nation’s top practitioners in health care compliance strategies, which includes health care compliance program formation and advising; DEA complianceMedicaid and Medicare compliance; general medical compliance; and Medicare audits and the Medicare audit process.

    Over the course of his legal career, Mr. Chapman has gained a reputation as an authority on health care law, and he has achieved remarkable success defending the rights and interests of a diverse range of health care professionals. From 1989 through the present, Mr. Chapman has handled or supervised the defense of nearly 1,000 civil rights and/or medical malpractice claims. During that time period he successfully defended all claims with dismissals or No Cause of Action verdicts, with the exception of four adverse verdicts and six settlements. In addition, he has successfully defended hundreds of nurses and physicians in a variety of legal and administrative settings.

    Recognized for his outstanding professionalism and service, Mr. Chapman is AV Preeminent peer-review rated* through Martindale-Hubbell and has a Lawyers of Distinction designation for Health Law. In addition, Dbusiness Magazine voted him Top Lawyer of the Year in 2010 and 2020, and Michigan Lawyers Weekly named him among the state’s Leaders in the Law. He has also received the Gold Client Champion Award from Martindale-Hubbell. He holds a Master of Law in Health Law from Loyola University Chicago School of Law — the top school in the U.S. for Health Law.

    *AV®, AV Preeminent®, Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished and Martindale-Hubbell Notable are certification marks used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell® is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the anonymous opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Rating™ fall into two categories: legal ability and general ethical standards.

     
    Practice Areas
    • 20%Health Care
    • 30%Civil Litigation: Defense
    • 20%Personal Injury - Medical Malpractice: Defense
    • 20%Criminal Defense: White Collar
    • 10%Administrative Law
    Focus Areas

    Hospital Law, Health & Health Care Law, Dental Malpractice, Medical Malpractice, Delayed or Incorrect Diagnosis, Informed Consent, Licensing

    Selections

    Selected to Super Lawyers for 1 yearsbottom-image

    Super Lawyers: 2021

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    To: Ronald W. Chapman
    Super Lawyers: Potential Client Inquiry

    Disclaimer:

    The information contained in this web site is intended to convey general information. It should not be construed as legal advice or opinion. It is not an offer to represent you, nor is it intended to create an attorney-client relationship. The use of the internet or this contact form for communication is not necessarily a secure environment. Contacting a lawyer or law firm email through this service will not create an attorney-client relationship, and information will not necessarily be treated as privileged or confidential.

    White Papers

  • Severe Penalties For False Claims Act Violations (2015) - The penalties for False Claims Act violations and health care fraud are steep, not to mention the cost to defend an audit or allegations of fraud. With the government investing a significant amount of resources to investigate and prosecute health care fraud, physicians should be aware of the law and the penalties before it is too late.

  • About Ronald Chapman

    Admitted: 1985, Florida

    Professional Webpage: http://www.chapmanlawgroup.com/attorney/ronaldchapman/

    Honors/Awards:

    • For some 20 years, I have held the AV Preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell — the highest rating available, AV Preeminent, Martindale-Hubbell, 2020
    • DBusiness honored me for superior achievements in health law, DBusiness, 2020
    • Recognized as a lawyer of distinction for health law, Lawyers of Distinction, 2019
    • AV Preeminent is an award of professional excellence earned through a strenuous Peer Review Rating process that is managed and monitored by Martindale-Hubbell, AV Preeminent, Martindale-Hubbell, 2019
    • AV Preeminent is an award of professional excellence earned through a strenuous Peer Review Rating process that is managed and monitored by Martindale-Hubbell, AV Preminent, Martindale-Hubbell, 2015
    • AV Preeminent is an award of professional excellence earned through a strenuous Peer Review Rating process that is managed and monitored by Martindale-Hubbell, AV Preminent, Martindale-Hubbell, 2014
    • Top Lawyer 2013: This award is presented annually to attorneys who distinguish themselves in a specific field of law, and I was recognized in Civil Rights, Health Law, Top Lawyer 2013, Sarasota Magazine, 2013
    • AV Preeminent is an award of professional excellence earned through a strenuous Peer Review Rating process that is managed and monitored by Martindale-Hubbell, AV Preminent, Martindale-Hubbell, 2012
    • Top Lawyer 2011: This award is presented annually to attorneys who distinguish themselves in a specific field of law, and I was recognized in Civil Rights, Health Law, Top Lawyer 2011, Sarasota Magazine, 2011
    • Top Lawyer 2010 — Civil Rights: DBusiness recognized my accomplishing over 25 years of defending civil rights claims in the correctional health care industry, Top Lawyer 2010 - Civil Rights, DBusiness, 2010
    • AV Preeminent is an award of professional excellence earned through a strenuous Peer Review Rating process that is managed and monitored by Martindale-Hubbell, AV Preminent, Martindale-Hubbell, 2010
    • AV Preeminent is an award of professional excellence earned through a strenuous Peer Review Rating process that is managed and monitored by Martindale Hubbell, AV Preminent, Martindale-Hubbell, 2008
    • The U.S. Air Force Comptroller N.C.O. of the Year honor is presented to Noncommissioned Officers who has distinguished themselves from their peers, U.S. Air Force Comptroller N.C.O. of the Year, U.S. Air Force, 1979

    Special Licenses/Certifications:

    Bar/Professional Activity:

    • Vice-Chair, Medical Legal Subcommittee for the State Bar of Michigan Health Care Law Section, 2015
    • American Health Lawyers Association - member, 2015
    • The American Association of Nurse Attorneys - member, 2014
    • 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, 2003
    • The Florida Bar, 2003
    • U.S. District Court, Middle District of Florida, 2003
    • 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, 1989
    • U.S. District Court, Western District of Michigan, 1998
    • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan, 1987
    • State Bar of Michigan, 1985

    Scholarly Lectures/Writings:

    • Medical Ethics CME Course, Presenter, Manatee County Medical Society's 2021 CME Day, Manatee County Medical Society, 2021
    • How to Prepare and Respond to State and DEA Inspections and Medicaid Audits, Presenter, Florida Pharmacy Association Annual Law and Regulatory Conference, Florida Pharmacy Association, 2020
    • Medical Ethics CME Course on Self-Referrals, False Claims, Anti-Kickback, Physician Licensing, Standard of Care, Uninsured Physicians, Presenter, Manatee County Medical Society's 2020 CME Day, Manatee County Medical Society, Health Care, 2020
    • Correctional healthcare client’s annual educational meeting on the implications of Stark regulations, Speaker, Educational Presentation: Stark Regulations, Corizon Annual Meeting, Health Care; Corrections, 2019
    • CME Webinar discussing DEA Compliance and Controlled Substance Prescribing Issues, Presenter, Protect Yourself and Your License: DEA Compliance and Opioid Abuse, Urgent Care Association of America, Health Care, 2017
    • Discussed the consequences of health care fraud and the role played by the legal industry, Presenter, Consequences of Health Care Fraud, Southwest Florida Paralegal Association, Health Care, Legal, 2017
    • Continuing education class to nearly 400 pharmacists and technicians at the Regulatory and Law Conference hosted by the Florida Pharmacy Association, Presenter, Medicaid Audits, Pharmacy Inspections and DEA Inspections, Regulatory and Law Conference, Florida Pharmacy Association, Health Care, 2016
    • Guide to help physicians understand, prepare for, and defend DEA inspections and audits, Co-Author, Physician's Guide to DEA Administrative Inspections, Pain Medicine News, Health Care, 2016
    • Article on why pain physicians must be aware of the criminal consequences of departures from the standard of care, Co-Author, When Prescribing Controlled Substances Becomes Drug Trafficking, Pain Medicine News, 2015
    • Primer on the intricacies of administrative law as it applies to healthcare professionals, Guest Lecturer, Administrative Law for Health Professionals, Stetson University College of Law, Health Law, 2015
    • What correctional healthcare providers should know about mental health-related lawsuits, Presenter, Retrospect Analysis of Significant Lawsuits Involving Mental Health Issues: Cause-Effect and How to Prevent Future Litigation, National Commission on Correctional Health Care Conference, Health Law, 2011
    • How deliberate indifference claims have pitfalls and unique characteristics, Presenter, Redefining Deliberate Indifference to a Community Standard of Care, National Commission on Correctional Health Care, Health Law, 2009
    • What correctional healthcare providers should know about civil rights litigation, Presenter, Real Life Medicine: Avoiding the Perfect Storm of Litigation, National Conference on Correctional Health Care, Health Law, 2008

    Verdicts/Settlements:

    • Working with Payors As Incorrect Advice from Another Law Firm on CPT Code Use Leads to Medicare, Insurer Audits for Physician: Client physician requested a review of a set of CPT codes for a novel set of procedures the physician was to perform in the healthcare practice office. After a careful review of the CPT codes and the purpose for each, I provided an opinion: three of the codes could not be used, while one code required very specific criteria for when it would be able to be used. The physician did not favor my opinion and found a different attorney, who advised the physician that the one CPT code requiring specific criteria before being used, could be used without the specific criteria. A year later, the physician was on the verge of a federal indictment for using the code that the other lawyer said was usable, when it turned out the code could not be used for the physician’s intended purposes. I am now in the process of working with Medicare, third-party commercial insurers (Blue Cross Blue Shield and UnitedHealthcare) and other entities while massive audits are being performed on the physician’s practice for misusing the code in question. The physician in this matter has since shared a positive opinion of the Chapman Law Group healthcare compliance practice group with several other doctors, who also have retained us for the same CPT code issues, 2021
    • Through Documentation Analysis, Our Healthcare Compliance Lawyers Convinced RAC Auditor to Clear Payment for RFA Procedures: After a RAC audit decision denied reimbursement for 14 varicose vein procedures, our healthcare compliance attorneys helped a Michigan heart and vascular specialist practice draft a successful appeal. Additionally, I worked with the practice on better documentation techniques to avoid future negative audit outcomes, 2021
    • Ophthalmologist Awarded $510,000 After Medicare Tries to Backtrack Its Error: Our client, a Port Richey, Florida-based ophthalmologist, had a contract with UnitedHealthcare of Florida, along with its affiliate, WellMed Medical Management, dating back to 2010. United had been reimbursing the ophthalmologist regularly for Avastin (for diabetic eye disease, retina problems and age-related macular degeneration), processing the claims using CMS ASP Drug Pricing Files; WellMed was reimbursing by the default rate of a percentage of the billed charges. This meant the ophthalmologist got a higher reimbursement rate from WellMed than United. WellMed, upon discovering its error, ordered the ophthalmologist to pay back $250,000, which WellMed contended it was owed because of the overpayment. United and WellMed pointed to the fee schedule in the contract, saying it “is actually a sample and that the actual fees are derived from ‘market standard specifications’ which change regularly.” At arbitration, the arbitrator rejected United and WellMed’s fee schedule argument, calling it “an incomprehensible way of trying to determine rates. Indeed, it is apparently so confusing that WellMed itself arrived for more than six years at a rate it now claims is excessive.” Our client was awarded $510,706 in damages, 2020
    • Entrepreneur Saved from Being Hit with Possible $13.8 Million in Damages from Feds: A non-healthcare entrepreneur based in South Florida was working in the healthcare space. He received a civil investigative demand regarding his role in encouraging physicians to prescribe particular DME equipment, thus engaging in suspected health care fraud. I perceived the potential value of the claim was $4.6 million; if trebled, that amount could have been $13.8 million. I performed a due diligence investigation of the client’s equipment. I met with the U.S. Attorney on several occasions, and we were able to secure confidence that the federal attorney was not going to pursue any further civil investigation for the entrepreneur’s alleged healthcare fraud, 2020
    • Health Care Entity Paid for Rehabilitative Services After Insurer Refuses, Deal Set Up for Future Daily Fixed Rate: I represented a health care entity that, its insurance carrier claimed, was performing rehabilitative services without the proper licenses. The insurance carrier refused to pay for the rehabilitative services and was withholding payments of approximately $1.5 million. I was able to successfully negotiate payment for the outstanding claims and receivables at approximately 50%. In addition, our healthcare attorneys entered into an agreement with the insurance carrier for a fixed daily rate for each patient thereafter, 2020
    • Jury: Prison Physician Assistant Not Liable for Deliberate Indifference to ‘Broken Hand Symptoms’: A pro se prisoner alleged that our client, the physician assistant, was deliberately indifferent to “broken hand symptoms” when treating a bite wound on the prisoner’s hand. The physician assistant, an expert correctional medicine physician, and other witnesses testified to not seeing any sign of a fracture at the time of the initial visit. A federal jury found in favor of our client, 2019
    • Macomb County Jury in $4.5 Million Suit Rules Nurse Not Negligent in Inmate Suicide Action: Plaintiff’s decedent was incarcerated at Macomb County Jail. During intake, she did not appear suicidal, and with the exception of prior psychiatric history, she answered all suicide screening questions in the negative. Because of prior suicidal ideation, the electronic medical record autofilled the suggested housing placement as “suicide watch.” She was placed in detox for alcohol and not suicide watch. Forty hours into her five-day detox program, she was moved by custody to max/segregation. She committed suicide within three hours. The estate sued the nurse and the employer for professional negligence and “failure to train.” I contended that the actual record did not support suicide watch; further, if the nurse saw the checked box, she would have unchecked it. The plaintiff sought $4.5 million in damages. After a four-day jury trial, the jury returned a verdict of No Cause of Action, 2019
    • Medical Provider Acted Appropriately, Patient’s Death More Result of Old Age: Plaintiff’s estate alleged that, had Defendant diagnosed a surgical abdomen earlier, Plaintiff’s decedent would not have died following a surgery that discovered a cancerous tumor invading the bowel. Defendant argued that client’s actions on day one of patient’s hospital stay were not negligent, and that patient’s death was more the result of her age and health condition and not a result of client’s actions. After just 11 minutes of deliberating, the jury reached a No Cause of Action verdict, 2019
    • Jury Delivers No-Cause in Suit Against Medical Providers for Alleged Delay in Treatment: Medical experts testified Plaintiff’s first assessment on a Friday was within normal limits, justifying a referral to sick call for Monday morning rather than over the weekend. Ron was able to prove the physician was not aware of Plaintiff’s condition, which resulted in a ruptured appendix and therefore did not consciously disregard his health. A federal jury took 28 minutes to return a No Cause of Action verdict for both the nurse and the physician, 2019
    • Inmate Sued Physicians for Failure to Treat MS; No-Cause, Dismissal Issued: Plaintiff, who had multiple sclerosis, claimed Defendants collectively failed to comply with the applicable standards of care and conduct a thorough workup and/or referral to specialists for further review of his condition. Plaintiff was unable to establish that injuries or damages were proximately caused by the negligence or wrongdoing of the defendant physicians. After six years of federal and state litigation, the federal claim was dismissed in 2017, and our client won in a three-day arbitration hearing with a No Cause of Action ruling on the state claim in February, 2019
    • Pharmacist Granted Medicare and Medicaid Exclusion Period Reduction: I argued to the Office of Inspector General (“OIG”) that the prescribed time for Medicare and Medicaid exclusion (for a pharmacist convicted of a controlled substance violation) was unreasonable under the OIG regulations. In addition, I contended that the financial loss was less than $5,000 (well below the aggravating factors determined by OIG regulations, which call for financial loss of $50,000 or more); that petitioner’s mental, emotional or physical commission was found to lessen his criminal culpability; and that the petitioner has been substantially cooperating. The administrative law judge determined that the period of exclusion was unreasonable and reduced the exclusion period, 2018
    • Jury Delivers No-Cause in Suit Against Medical Providers for Alleged Delay in Treatment: Medical experts testified Plaintiff’s first assessment on a Friday was within normal limits, justifying a referral to sick call for Monday morning rather than over the weekend. Chapman Law Group was able to prove the physician was not aware of Plaintiff’s condition, which resulted in a ruptured appendix and therefore did not consciously disregard his health. A federal jury took 28 minutes to return a No Cause of Action verdict for both the nurse and the physician, 2015

    Transactions:

    • Involved in compliance review of multiple health care transactions including the sale of pharmacy, upstart of urgent care and cosmetic spa, etc., 2019

    Representative Clients:

    • Beazley defense of complex civil litigation matters involving medical issue, 2019
    • AIG: defense of civil litigation claims involving medical issues, 2019
    • Physicians, Nurses, Pharmacists, Pharmacies, Hospitals, Medical Clinics, Medical Malpractice Insurers, Correctional Health Care Providers, Dentists, Chiropractors, EMTs, Paramedics, Distributors, 2019
    • CCS/WellPath for the past eight years (medical malpractice and 42 § USC 1983 civil rights claims), 2019
    • Corizon: For 25 years, we have handled virtually all of the health care litigation involving privately contracted health care within the Michigan Department of Corrections, 2019

    Other Outstanding Achievements:

    • Graduated from Loyola University School of Law, Chicago, with an LL.M. in health law, 2016
    • Earned the rank of Godan (5th degree) black belt in Koei-Kan Karate Do, 2009
    • Honorable discharge from the U.S. Army Staff Judge Advocate Corps. (1987-91), 1991
    • Served as Chief of Staff to Wayne County Executive from 1985-97 (Wayne County was the third largest county in the United States at the time), 1985
    • Honorable discharge from the U.S. Air Force, rank of Sergeant, 1980
    • Completed the Detroit Marathon in 1991, 1992, and 1999 and the Pittsburgh Marathon in 1991, 1991

    Educational Background:

    • Loyola University Chicago School of Law - LL.M., Health Law, 2016
    • Wayne State University Law School – Juris Doctorate, 1984
    • University of Southern California – Master, Public Administration, 1980
    • California State University – B.A., Cum Laude, 1979
    • Sacramento City College – A.A., Summa Cum Laude, 1977

    Industry Groups

    • Health Care
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    Office Location for Ronald W. Chapman

    701 Waterford Way
    Suite 340
    Miami, FL 33126

    Phone: 305-712-7177

    Ronald W. Chapman:

    Last Updated: 3/31/2021

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