Healthcare Business Compliance: How to Stay Legally Compliant

As a healthcare professional, you know staying legally compliant isn’t something you can put on the back burner. Ensuring that your business adheres to the latest regulations is paramount to safeguarding your practice and maintaining trust with your patients. 

From reporting beneficial ownership information to navigating ongoing state and federal filing requirements, it’s hard to know where to start on your business compliance journey.

Here’s a comprehensive guide on how to stay on the right side of the law.

Business Compliance: Understanding Beneficial Ownership Reporting

Starting January 1, 2024, companies across the United States are mandated to report information about their beneficial owners to the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN). These beneficial owners are the individuals who ultimately own or control the company. 

This requirement stems from the Corporate Transparency Act of 2021, underscoring the importance of transparency and accountability in business operations.

For healthcare professionals, this means ensuring that your business accurately reports its beneficial ownership information to FinCEN, thereby upholding the integrity and trustworthiness of your practice within the regulatory framework.

Internal Requirements for Legal Compliance

Business compliance is about meeting external obligations and maintaining robust internal IT processes. Regardless of your business structure—be it a corporation, LLC or another entity—documenting compliance with internal requirements is essential. 

For corporations, this involves holding regular director and shareholder meetings, recording meeting minutes and adhering to bylaws. Similarly, LLCs should maintain updated operating agreements and record membership interest transfers.

When you meticulously document internal compliance measures, you can ensure smooth operations and mitigate legal risks down the line. 

And, if you’re unsure where your IT infrastructure currently stands, consider either a co-managed approach or leveraging IT consulting services.

Navigating Ongoing State and Federal Filing Requirements

Annual filing requirements can vary based on your business structure and location. From annual reports to franchise taxes, staying abreast of state filing obligations is crucial. 

Federal requirements, such as tax obligations and compliance with the Affordable Care Act, further underscore the need for thorough record-keeping and timely submissions.

For businesses with federal licenses or permits, ensuring compliance with relevant regulations is non-negotiable. Whether it’s reporting health coverage under the Affordable Care Act or maintaining federal permits, healthcare professionals must navigate these requirements diligently.

Addressing Other Regulatory Considerations

In addition to filing requirements, healthcare businesses must comply with various other regulations. From marketing and advertising laws to workplace health and safety regulations, staying compliant encompasses a broad spectrum of considerations, including healthcare IT support.

Ensuring accessibility under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and adhering to copyright laws further underscores the multifaceted nature of regulatory compliance in healthcare.

Licenses, Permits and Recertification

Maintaining licenses, permits and certifications is paramount for healthcare professionals. Renewal requirements vary based on industry and location, requiring proactive engagement with local licensing authorities. 

Whether it’s renewing health and safety certificates for restaurants or obtaining recertification for professional services, staying on top of licensing obligations is vital for maintaining legal compliance.

Action Items for Healthcare Professionals

What are some steps you can take today to help make sure your business complies? Here’s a quick recap of what we covered in this post:

1. Understand Beneficial Ownership Reporting

Familiarize yourself with the Corporate Transparency Act of 2021 and the requirement to report beneficial ownership information to FinCEN.

2. Document Internal Compliance Measures

Establish procedures for documenting internal compliance measures, including regular meetings, recording meeting minutes and adhering to bylaws or operating agreements.

3. Review Local State and Federal Filing Requirements

Regularly review state and federal filing requirements applicable to your business structure and location. Ensure timely submissions of annual reports, payment of franchise taxes and compliance with federal tax obligations and the Affordable Care Act.

4. Maintain Federal Licenses and Permits

If your healthcare business requires federal licenses or permits, like those related to health coverage reporting or specific medical services, ensure they are kept up to date. Monitor any changes in federal regulations that may impact your business operations.

Proactively engage with local licensing authorities to ensure timely renewal of health and safety certificates, sales permits, professional certifications or any other required documentation.

5. Address Additional Regulatory Considerations

Keep in mind marketing and advertising laws, workplace health and safety regulations and accessibility standards under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Ensure compliance with copyright laws and any other relevant regulations applicable to your practice.

How to Stay on Top of Healthcare Business Compliance

Healthcare compliance is a continuous commitment to upholding the highest standards of ethics and integrity. By understanding and adhering to regulatory requirements, healthcare professionals can safeguard their practices, protect patient trust and contribute to a healthier, more transparent healthcare ecosystem.

At Merit, we understand the complexities of HIPAA compliance. Our expert team is here to support your compliance efforts, ensuring that your business remains legally compliant every step of the way. 

Talk with an expert today to learn more about our comprehensive compliance solutions tailored to the unique needs of healthcare professionals.

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