Md/jd

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by medicnas, Dec 5, 2002.

  1. Hey everybody! I've got two questions that I hope somebody can help me out with:

    1) What do MD/JDs do? Operate, litigate, other?

    2) Anybody doing an MD/JD, going to do and MD/JD or have an MD/JD?

    Thanks for any help/advice you can provide!!
     
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  3. Camden772

    Camden772 Senior Member
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    I have a JD now, and I will have an MD in 2007 (assuming I can graduate on time).

    I predict that my JD will be more or less useless to me when I get done with my medical education. But I don't really have a desire to use my law degree in the future. I just want to be a physician. Nevertheless, I am curious to hear from other future or current JD/MDs. I know there are at least a few others on this forum.

    Who knows, maybe I'll be able to find some use for that degree yet?
     
  4. Raptor

    Raptor Found one
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    I don't know what you can do with a MD/JD but I have a case with my friend. I know a friend from Duke that is graduating with a dual MD/JD degree. He saids that he isn't going to practice as a physician but he is going to work with HMO. I don't know if that helps or not. :confused:
     
  5. lotanna

    lotanna Child of God
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    We've been discussin a lot about controversy of science in teh courtroom, and how lawyers never understand scientific evidence.
    What would be better than a lawyer who is also a physician, and understands scientific concepts.
    The JD/MD degrees will be very lucrative, and extremely beneficial to anyone who gets it.
     
  6. Camden772

    Camden772 Senior Member
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    Except that I think you could do just as well without spending four years in medical school and paying between 50k to 200k for the degree. I think it would be of moderate help, if any, to the practice of law. This is because, unfortunately lawyers usually do not need to understand scientific concepts. The lawyers do not and cannot testify in a trial (at least not one where s/he is an advocate for one of the parties). They just hire experts (many of whom are complete whores) to say what they need on the stand. Then they make arguments to a judge who has no understanding of science or to a jury made up of people who have no understanding of science.

    Sure knowing and understanding many scientific and medical concepts can be helpful, but a lawyer can always have someone explain those concepts to him/her. In addition, a lawyer can always have an undergraduate degree in science. This would be a much more cost-effective way to have some type of scientific background. In fact, I know a number of lawyers that were engineering or science majors. This would be enough of a background that s/he could always be brought up to speed on any medical/scientific case.

    The sad truth is that the science and medicine is not important enough to the law for it to be worth the time and money it takes to get an MD. You're better off spending four years building your law practice and gaining legal expertise in the area you are interested in.
     
  7. captbadass

    captbadass Senior Member
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    theres some lawyer that advertizes on tv here in florida that has both md and jd degrees. i dont want to say his name because the guy is a loser malpractice attorney and i wouldnt want to give him free advertizing. anyways, i think the general population might be quicker to hire him for a medical malpractice case becuase of his medical background. however, i doubt it really gives him any advantage in the courtroom since lawyers generally have to hire experts to testify about all the medical issues anyway. In essence the guy is just another ambulance chaser who whores himself out on tv looking for the next jackpot. If anyone is considering MD/JD I think it can be a very valuable combination of degrees. I just hope I dont see you on TV.

    CAPTBADASS
     
  8. Camden772

    Camden772 Senior Member
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    I guarantee you won't ever see me trying to sue doctors for malpractice. I think we need radical reform in this area. A lot more than the caps many states have and are instituting. Anyway, I won't get started on that soapbox.

    I agree that the MD could be valuable to a lawyer as a marketing tool, but that's about it. And I know many lawyers who build up ridiculously profitable practices without investing the time and money to get an MD.

    It has value for a lawyer, but it's just not worth it in my opinion.
     
  9. You know...if I were cross-examining a doctor I think that I'd be able to do it much better if I had an MD. But other than that advantage...I'm lost.

    What if you flip it around and you practice but just have a JD...could it be useful in that scenario?
     
  10. Camden772

    Camden772 Senior Member
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    I don't understand the question medicnas.

    But I wouldn't advise getting an MD just to help your law practice. I don't think it would assist in a cross examination as much as you think. Certainly not enough to be worth the time and money.
     
  11. My apologies for not being clear. So far we've established that having an MD could help with a JD. What about the other way? For a practicing physician (if the ultimate goal is to practice or heck, even be an academic physician) then how would the JD help? I guess in some basic ways...contracts, stuff like that...but nothing you couldn't just retain a lawyer for. Hopefully it makes sense now? Clear as mud? :)
     
  12. Mistress S

    Mistress S Don't mess with the S
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    It would seem that this kind of education would be well suited for consulting work, especially with large hospitals, insurance companies, or similar businesses that deal with medical/legal issues as part of their field and would benefit from having an advisor/consultant on their staff with an extensive background in both areas. This could probably also be a very lucrative use of the MD/JD dual degree. Another, likely less profitable use of the degrees would be in the academic world- a person with this education would be a good choice to instruct doctors and medical students about their legal rights and responsibilities, a constantly growing issue. I'm not sure how helpful it would be for a practicing physician to have a JD or for a lawyer to have the MD in their everyday work. Of course, if you had a burning interest in both law and medicine and couldn't be satisfied with only pursuing one in depth, this would obviously be the way to go for you.
     
  13. LUBDUBB

    LUBDUBB Freakaholic
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    With an MD/JD you could be a CSO (chief scientific officer) for a Pharmaceutical company and make somewhere in the neighborhood of 800k

    or you could go work for the FDA and make like 60k

    good luck
     
  14. The Hulk

    The Hulk Official Green Monster
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    I agree completely and whole-heartedly. Although people often say JD-MD's would be great for malpractice law, you will not have the specialty training to really tell what is true malpractice or not beyond what the layman would know, because, having never done a residency, you would not have an true expertise in any medical area. JD-Mds would have a slight leg up going into patent law, specifically as it regards medical-device patenting. Also, Getting a MD-JD or MD-MBA would give you a slight leg up working at an HMO. Either way, the point is that if you really are in it for the money, just get a JD or MBA. If you have the intelligence and dedication to get through medical school, than if you just go for one degree and then apply yourself with that same energy in either the business or law field, you will be financially succesfull well before you would if you had pursued the joint degree.

    TH
     
  15. Kovox

    Kovox Going Places
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    Hi:

    Perhaps I can offer some insight, two of my cousins have JD/MD and I was going to pursue it myself.

    Unless you are interested in becoming a malpractice lawyer or doing consulting work, it isn't worth your time in obtaining both degrees because most likely, you'll be either doing litigation stuff or medical stuff. As for malpractice, it would help you in understanding the case at hand and not say something idiotic during the trial but if you do your homework, having a MD isn't really necessary to become a good malpractice lawyer.

    As for consulting, usually a science background and JD is enough.
     
  16. Camden772

    Camden772 Senior Member
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    Just out of curiosity, are you still planning on getting a JD/MD? And if you are what are planning on doing with it?
     
  17. Camden772

    Camden772 Senior Member
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    Well, keep in mind I have not practiced medicine yet. So I might not be able to see the potential benefits of having a J.D. But I think a practicing physician having a J.D. is even less useful than a lawyer having an M.D.

    Just having a J.D. does not make you an expert in contracts. I have a J.D. and I have been practicing law for almost four years, but I don't feel comfortable reviewing or drafting contracts. My wife does. But that's because it's been a big part of her job for the last four years. I, on the other hand, have been a prosecutor and I have worked at a law firm where I defend large international companies involved in million and billion dollar lawsuits. I learned a lot about litigation but I have never drafted or reviewed a contract for someone.

    My point is, just having a JD is not enough to make you competent at any particular aspect of the law. You are going to gain those skills by being out and practicing. I have gained skills in litigation, but if someone wanted me to review their employment contract, I would probably refer them to someone else (or maybe have my wife look at it). If someone wanted me to draft a will for them, I would again refer them to someone else (or at least make sure I have an estate and trust lawyer review what I draft). Maybe I'm overly cautious, but if I just had a JD and never practiced law, I probably wouldn't feel comfortable giving any legal advice or relying on what I learned in law school for anything in my medical practice. It would be like someone trying to treat a patient with just an MD and no specialty training. You could probably do some things, but you'd always prefer to have someone with real training and experience.

    The biggest value I see is that I now know a lot of lawyers. I have friends that are prosecutors, estate planning lawyers, corporate lawyers, criminal defense lawyers, employment lawyers, real estate lawyers, product liability lawyers, and I know a lot of judges, a few senators and the list goes on. So if I need quick legal advice, I can probably usually get it for free. But I don't know if that's worth three years of law school (two years in a combined program). In addition, most of the significant contacts I have made have been while I have been practicing, not while I was in law school. And if you are in a combined program, you might not have as much time to get to know all of the other law students.

    In short, I guess I would say that there is very little value in having a J.D. if you are a practicing physician.

    As for consulting. Something else other people have mentioned. My guess is that having an MD/JD would be of only moderate help. In reality I think the only real value to an MD/JD is as a marketing tool. I can't think of a consulting job where it would be worth the time and money.

    My advice to anyone is not to bother getting a JD/MD. I'm going to have both degrees, but if I could do it all over again I would have never gone to law school and I would have just kept trying to get into medical school back in 1995 (assuming that I still would have somehow been able to meet my wife).
     
  18. Teufelhunden

    Teufelhunden 1K Member
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  19. Camden772

    Camden772 Senior Member
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    Dr. Hume seems to be echoing my thoughts exactly. Or maybe I'm echoing his?
     
  20. phil413ru

    phil413ru Senior Member
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    Correct me if I am wrong, but someone once told me that if you wish to go into forensic pathology, you need MD, and its either required/recommended to get law degree. I was told that in Forensic pathology you are like a medical examiner, only you usually get crime victims and must determine how they died. You also testify in court, and work with legal system too (to prosecute perpetrator of crime) I had a friend in high school who wanted to do this. She said that one would need med school and law school, but once this is done, make $300+ annually. That is if you can stand having most of you patients be crime victims.

    If anyone knows more about this, let me know--I am incredibly curious. (Although I do not plan on working in this field--I'm a people person--living people) :)
     
  21. Camden772

    Camden772 Senior Member
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    You are wrong. A forensic pathologist, just like a forensic psychiatrist does not need a law degree. I have known several forensic pathologists (while I was a prosecutor and through my father who is a pathologist), and none of them had a law degree. It is not only unnecessary, but I think it would be a waste of time. A forensic pathologist is called to testify about medical and scientific matters not the law. In fact, the judge would most likely prevent the pathologist from giving any legal opinions even if he had a law degree (and if the judge allowed it, he would be reversed on appeal). To be a forensic pathologist, you go to medical school for four years, you do a five year residency in pathology, and then a fellowship in forensics. No law school required. In fact, I think it would make you a worse witness. I doubt I would want to call a forensic pathologist to the stand who had a law degree -- you want the jury to respect him/her as a medical expert and not think of him as another scumbag lawyer. ;)
     

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