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Who has right to set fees?

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In our modern, materialistic, acquisitive society, it is only natural that the rewards of a profession constitute one of the significant considerations of one's choice of profession.

Professional fees fall into two basic categories: voluntary and involuntary.By voluntary, I mean those fees over which the individual has some independent choice as to whether or not to pay. Such services as investment and financial advice, grooming and recreation are within the category of voluntary services.

Involuntary fees are for services imposed by society and nature. Medical fees and legal fees fall into this category.

The question posed in this: Do the medical and legal professions have the moral right to be sole judge as to the value of these services? Also, does the individual who is subject to the demand for professional fees for medical and legal services maintain any degree of individual freedom in regard to the contract for such involuntary services?

I do not question the fact that the medical and legal professions offer a moral service to society and are composed of moral individuals. The only idea being posited here is the question of who has the moral right to determine the value of the services rendered.

H. Grant Heaton

Holladay