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The hospital's general counsel is its chief lawyer on staff. Their general duties are to:
- Provide legal advice to the physicians on matters of medical liability and informed consent;
- Ensure the hospital's corporate paperwork, such as its board minutes, are kept complete and up-to-date;
- Accept service of documents when the hospital is sued, whether for malpractice or for general negligence (e.g., a slip and fall in the lobby);
- Hire and supervise outside counsel for specialized work, such as defending malpractice suits;
- Representing physicians in insurance and disciplinary matters.