Procuring Medical Records For A Personal Injury Case: A Primer


If you find yourself as the plaintiff in a personal injury case, in most cases, you will find that you will have to present your medical records in order to be compensated for the damages for which you are suing. You might also find that you must procure these documents for others if you are their guardian, custodian, or simply trying to help out a friend or family member. This guide will serve as a primer for procuring your medical records in the event that you need them for a personal injury suit.

You May Procure Your Own Records

There are no occasions when you should be denied access to your own medical records. Under the HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act), there are provisions made so that, under no possible circumstance, can you be denied access to your own medical records, either through a public institution like a hospital or a private provider.

You May Have Access to Records Of The Deceased

Although you cannot always have access to a deceased individual's medical records, there are certain occasions where such records can be made available to you. If you have been appointed the representative of a person's estate, either through will designation or appointed by a court of law, then you can have complete access to that person's medical records. You can also have access to a deceased person's medical records if you are related to the deceased and there is a bit of information in the medical file that corresponds or relates to your own health.

You May Have Access to Others' Medical Records

Again, in most cases, you cannot have access to others' medical records. However, one particular provision of HIPAA allows you to gain access to the records of other living individuals. The person or people in question must give you express permission in writing to have access to their medical records. This will essentially give you the ability to act as a representative on behalf of the living to access these medical records.

You May Have Access To Your Children's Medical Records

If you have children, you will have access to their medical records. There are a few provisions that can prevent you access, however. If the parent agrees to the decision that the child and physician or provider have a confidential relationship or, if there is an occasion where a child has consented to medical care in which consent on behalf of the parent is not required by law, a parent will not have access to his or her child's medical records. Visit to learn more.


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