This tool seems particularly important during the SARS-CoV-2 epidemic which presents physiotherapists with numerous challenges, including those of legal nature. In accordance with current statistics, our Legal Department has answered over five thousand emails since April 2018. Unfortunately, a large part of this correspondence is not very precise or does not concern legal issues. Moreover, some of these requests are submitted by not-authorized individuals (persons other than physiotherapists) or by physiotherapists who do not comply with their obligation to make regular payments for membership fees, which disqualifies them from participation in the Chamber’s budget. Hence the idea to systematize the process of reporting legal problems via the Physiotherapy Portal. The above-mentioned tool, introduced in accordance with the KIF resolution (427/I KRF) from the 16th of March 2020, aims to facilitate, clarify and accelerate the process of obtaining legal support for physiotherapists who are members of the KIF.
It is also worth noting that this resolution provides an opportunity for personal meeting with a legal advisor or lawyer. This solution will be employed in complicated cases, requiring additional explanations or presenting supplementary documents. It should also be kept in mind that, due to restrictions resulting from the epidemic state announced in Poland, personal meetings are temporarily impossible to conduct. As soon as the epidemic period ends, our pilot plan will be to organize legal aid in the form of open office hours – first in Warsaw and Cracow, then in specific KIF departments in other voivodeships. According to the provisions included in the resolution, legal aid in the form of personal meetings with legal advisor or lawyer will be provided after KIF indicates the date and location of the meeting. The meeting will take around 30 minutes, with the possibility of prolongation up to 1 hour.
The scope of legal aid
Giving our users access to this tool allows them to seek legal aid in a relatively easy way, as guaranteed by the conditions of working as a physiotherapist or running professional practice – especially in the field of medical law, which means all legal aspects of providing physiotherapeutic services.
Legal aid on the Physiotherapy
Portal In order to benefit from this new opportunity, choose “Legal aid” from the menu on the Physiotherapy Portal – this will redirect you to a subpage where you can apply for free legal aid regarding the terms and conditions of your work as a physiotherapist and review all previously submitted requests. If you wish to submit a new application, please choose “Submit an application” tab and provide, as precisely as you can, the title and brief description of your request in the designated areas. You can also attach documents which can help our experts understand the problem and choose your preferred type of legal aid.
The Portal enables you to access three types of legal aid:
- Information or statement provided via e-mail
- Meeting with legal advisor or lawyer during their duty hours
- Online consultation with legal advisor or lawyer
If you decide for online consultation or a meeting with legal advisor or lawyer during their duty hours, we will ask you for a short explanation why this type of help is best in your situation.
In order to review previously submitted applications and check their current status, please choose “Your applications” tab. This tab will direct you to a list of all previously submitted requests and present their submission dates, functional identity numbers (which can be used to provide precise details of your case when consulting other lawyers who work with KIF) and current statuses.
Help Center on the KIF website
Please note that, regardless of the legal aid available through the Physiotherapy Portal, the website of the Polish Chamber of Physiotherapists features a Help Center, where you can find regularly uploaded opinions concerning the most frequent legal problems reported by physiotherapists. The resolutions prepared by the Board of Polish Chamber of Physiotherapists and published on the website are also worth reading, as they often contain official statements regarding important and problematic matters of this profession. Ensuring fast access to legal support for members of the Polish Chamber of Physiotherapists, especially during the difficult situation caused by the COVID-19 epidemic and growing concerns of legal nature, this is one of the most important tasks we strive to complete today. New option of legal aid provided via the Physiotherapy Portal serves as a real answer to the needs of the physiotherapeutic community.