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I have been researching HIPAA and the potential for a private right of action. Others have opined that HIPAA does not provide a basis for a private right to sue and cause of action. Based upon a review of the law, this appeared to be correct, ie. an individual cannot sue using HIPAA as the cause of action. However, several state court cases have recently set legal precedence that show an individual can sue using a cause of action of "negligence" or "breach of duty of confidentiality" with a reference to HIPAA and the law's "standard of care" requirements. It appears when plead carefully, federal appeals courts are validating the approach as perfectly legal in the original state legal actions when there has been an improper disclosure of medical records. My read of this is an individual could also plead "breach of contract" if the contract required confidentiality of medical records in accordance with HIPAA. Two interesting articles with supporting case law on the topic are posted below. http://www.mcguirewoods.com/Client-Resources/Alerts/2011/6/HIPAA-May-Provide-Basis-for-State-Law-Private-Cause-of-Action.aspx http://www.driven-inc.com/hippa-violations-may-result-in-private-right-of-action-under-state-law/