Can an attorney force a hospital to release medical records to the patient?

UPDATED: Sep 5, 2014

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Can an attorney force a hospital to release medical records to the patient?

Let’s disregard all of the unique exceptions to the law, such as mental health or risk of injury to yourself or others, etc. What can a lawyer do, if you ask for your medical records and are denied and the state and HHS ignores your complaint?

Asked on September 5, 2014 under Malpractice Law, California


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

An attorney can obtain the medical records by having the client sign a medical authorization which is an authorization for the release of medical records.  When the attorney sends the medical authorization to the hospital, the hospital will release a copy of the medical records to the attorney.

Another alternative is for the attorney to subpoena the medical records.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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