Independent contracting in private practice can be a great way to get experience, learn new skills, work flexible hours and, of course, pay the bills. But it comes with risks and responsibilities, too: especially for private practitioners just starting out. As the public sector downsizes and outsources, and the private sector becomes more competitive, contracted or locum speech pathologists are becoming an important part of the speech pathology landscape in many countries.
This checklist is designed to help speech pathologists in private practice – both independent contractors themselves as well as people hiring them – to think through and agree the main business issues before they start their relationship. Written from the perspective of an independent contractor just starting out, this checklist includes many points equally relevant to experienced independent contractors and hirers.
Ticking off and agreeing these 24 matters in advance reduces your risk of a misunderstanding down the track. As always, seek the advice of your professional association or lawyer (or both) if you have any concerns about a particular contract you are considering.