Never would hire an LNCC

  1. 4
    I stumbled onto this site by accident...I am glad I did. As a Registered Nurse that is also an attorney, I was facinated by this thread. I read nearly every post and found something disturbing. It seems that many nurses have bought into the position of numerous LNC websites that implies to be a LNC there MUST be some sort special training. This is inaccurate (check the ANA's position paper re: LNC's). It is accurate that "to claim a LNCC there is special training required."

    Speaking as an attorney, I would personally NEVER hire a LNCC, and for that matter, neither would any of the attorneys that I have spoken to about the matter. Like much in the legal field, litigation is all about perception. A LNCC in my opinion gives the impression of a "hired gun." This is NOT how I want a nurse to appear. I (and most attorneys I know) would MUCH rather have an experienced nurse that we can qualify as an expert on the stand. It is FAR more important to us what your experience as a nurse is than whether you are a LNC or LNCC.

    This is not to say that you can't be both an experienced nurse and an LNC or LNCC. It is simply to point out that many attorneys prefer work experience as a nurse to qualify you as a expert (and make you highly credibile). In my opinion, just something to think about before sinking $3K-$15K for training that may or may not help.
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  4. 10 Comments so far...

  5. 2
    Hello and Welcome to allnurses.com

    Good to have you with us.

    Your post was moved from an off-topic thread to its own thread. Your observations in that off-topic thread would not include what you've pointed out.

    If you do a search, you will see many threads where your concerns are addressed. Yes, at this time, formal education as a Legal Nurse Consultant is not mandatory. One must be an RN with unencumbered/current license to practice nursing.

    Also, it appears you may be somewhat confused about the acronyms...

    LNC=Legal Nurse Consultatant. This is a title only. It does not imply any type of formal consulting education. Just that the RN is practicing as a Legal Nurse Consultant.

    LNCC=Legal Nurse Consultant Certified. This is conferred once an RN sits for and passes the certification examination given by the American Association for Legal Nurse Consultants (AALNC):

    http://www.aalnc.org/lncc/about/eligibility.cfm

    Again, formal education as a Legal Nurse Consultant is not mandatory:

    To be eligible to take the examination, candidates must have the following at the time of application:

    • current licensure as a registered nurse in the United States or its territories, with a full and unrestricted license
    • a minimum of five years of experience practicing as a registered nurse
    • evidence of 2000 hours of legal nurse consulting experience within the past three years.

    Those who meet the eligibility criteria and successfully complete the examination will earn the Legal Nurse Consultant Certified (LNCC) credential.
    It appears most of your concerns are regarding an "expert witness", not that of behind the scenes consultant.

    We hope this helps to explain about the LNC. We also hope you enjoy your stay at allnurses.com
    pennyaline and lindarn like this.
  6. 3
    A good point of view to point out to those considering going down this road. There have been several posts by people who have taken courses but never got established.
    pennyaline, Aviationurse, and lindarn like this.
  7. 4
    Wow, I have so much to say that I don't think my little fingers can type fast enough. And I apologize in advance for any misspelled or non capitalized words.
    I'm an RN with over 32 years of experience. After Hurricane Katrina, I lost my job as a Forensic Nurse and went to school for the LNC course. I also studied and obtained a Private Investigator's license. I realized I had been doing BOTH the LNC work and PI work in my job as a forensic nurse! Now, granted, my FN job was different than any other in the hospital, you see, I designed the job description myself, a virtually unheard of concept in the civil service system in which I was employed. I reviewed medical records on a daily basis, I identified risks and reported them to the RM department. I identified patients who came to us injured too critically to be able to identify themselves and then investigated to find their loved ones. I designed PI and QA programs that identified previously unrecognized revenues streams. I created programs that got us in compliance with federal regulations before they were mandated, putting us ahead of the game. Every day, I learned something new, and I was able to help both clients, their families and the hospital staff in ways I had never even considered nor planned. Needless to say, it was extremely rewarding and I miss it terribly. I learned so much that I carry in my two new careers, that I can knowingly say, that nurses do this stuff every day without even knowing it. And doing the job of a forensic nurse led me onto so many other paths that it's hard to put into one email. Of course, then I would read the post and see that I forgot something.
    I'm glad I took the LNC course because i did learn more about how to increase my professionalism in my practice, read court documents, write winning reports, etc. I also learned about marketing, which helps in PI services as well. I feel that we market to the same targets: attorneys. And the forensic nursing knowledge I have helps in both the PI and LNC cases when there is evidence collected, criminal elements or wrongful death.
    For me, I had colleagues that took the high priced week long courses that certify you as an LNC for ONLY that institute; they never worked as an LNC afterward. I early days, I remembered saying to myself, ohh, I wish I could afford that, but never did. Then later I took the course through a local university and have flourished! I have only my poor little website so far to market myself but it has gotten me cases already. I don't have the money to spend on big marketing program, nor litigation software yet, so I market in ittle ways. I always carry my cards, in my car, on my person, etc. I use ebates.com and vista print. If I'm in a casual restaurant, if I overhear an attorney talking I might orchestrate a chance meeting with him, say, on the way out, and hand him my card and give him a briefer than the usual 30 second elevator speech. Then about a week later, send him a personal card that gives him a one hour consultation free of charge. And who can stop after one hour? If you use that one hour to give them back excellent nuggets of info for a case, and you manage to impress them, they may just give you that case! you have to be careful not to give away the whole store, but just enough so they'll want more.
    Therefore in conclusion, I somewhat agree with the gist of what James said: You don't need to be certified as an LNC!

    I would love to hear comments on anything I've said in this post, no bashing please!
    Take care and have lovely, safe Memorial Day Weekend!
    KC007
    Last edit by sirI on May 23, '09
  8. 0
    Interesting point of view. A co-worker of mine and I have been told by 2 attorneys, seperate offices, that they would not use an LNC unless they were certified. They didn't care what certification, just get certified. I am speaking of behind the scene work, not expert witness though.
  9. 0
    I have training/certification in case management and life care planning. We do a ton of litigation consulting and have never considered getting certified as legal nurse consultants. I don't know that it's a bad thing as the original poster suggests but I'm not sure it would be all that helpful. What is helpful as far as being certified as an expert is having some body of education/certification/experience that you can sell to the jury as allowing you to offer an opinion they should care about.
  10. 3
    I'm a CLNC myself. I prefer NOT to act as a testifying expert myself but rather locate an expert witness(es) for attorneys to interview for themselves. I myself prefer to work as a "behind the scenes" consultant and offer attorneys screening or investigation of cases for merit; defining deviations from and adherences to the applicable standards of care; identify factors that caused or contributed to the alleged damanges and/or injuries; organize, tab and paginate medical records; summarize, translate and interpret medical records; assist in exhibit prepartion, etc.

    Behind the scenes consultants who do not act as testifying experts CAN offer attorneys many services (only some of which are listed) and save them time and money because of their knowledge of both the standards of care and knowledge of medical records. I find it a shame that attorneys would only view legal nurse consultants as testifying experts only. One VERY VERY IMPORTANT service we CAN provide also is detecting tampering of medical records. I feel that the radar we would have for that alone can make or break a case.
    pennyaline, lindarn, and sirI like this.
  11. 0
    Curious to know whether you would hire a nurse in the same capacity of an LNCC who is also a licensed attorney .
  12. 0
    I don't see why not! If I was is in need of another CLNC, LNCC, or LNC who was qualified to do research, prepare reports, identify tampering (if any), or other services I mentioned, I would consider hiring that person, even if they were also licenses as an attorney. Actually, I find that additional background interesting. I feel they would have an edge over others as they would be the one who knows the legal system like nurses know the medical system. However, I'm sure a nurse who subsequently went to law school wouldn't be interested in working as a legal nurse consultant (unless for poor economic conditions).

    In fact, the pioneer of legal nurse consulting, Vicki Milazzo, RN herself went into law following nursing but still held her nursing license for the consulting business she created.
  13. 1
    I would further like to comment on attorneys not wanting to hire a legal nurse consultant for fear of being viewed as a "hired gun". As a CLNC, I would work behind the scenes as mentioned in my earlier post. If an attorney didn't want to hire me to review the case for merit, tampering, to organize the records, etc. but ONLY wanted an expert witness, CLNC's can locate expert witnesses that would qualify with years of experience in the specific field of expertise [for a fee] (and only if that person was hired as an expert witness).

    Generally, when CLNC's are "locating" candidates to be considered as an expert witness per an interview with the attorney, they do look to send candidates who have testified on both plaintiff and defendant cases so as to not appear as a "hired gun" and, as mentioned earlier, who have a significant level of experience in whatever field of expertise necessary to match the needs associated with the specific case.
    lecavalier4 likes this.


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