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Debt Validation


larnell62
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I sent a debt validation request to a company and they sent me five responses that had my wife's medical records included. It stated what kinds of test were done and the dates. Since we didn't sign a release for them to get this info from the doctors isn't this a HIPAA violation?

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Not likely. The hospitals and medical providers do regular business with collection agencies. In order to do business with a healthcare provider, they must sign a Business Associate Agreement (BAA). That BAA gives them the permission they need to handle medical information.

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395.3025 (7)(a) If the content of any record of patient treatment is provided under this section, the recipient, if other than the patient or the patient's representative, may use such information only for the purpose provided and may not further disclose any information to any other person or entity, unless expressly permitted by the written consent of the patient. A general authorization for the release of medical information is not sufficient for this purpose. The content of such patient treatment record is confidential and exempt from the provisions of s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I of the State Constitution.

I still have a funny feeling that this is just internet folklore.

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Read the link (note that the address is the Florida Legislature)

It worked for me against Midland. Here is the letter I sent them: (Right after I sent it, I disputed the TL, and they deleted)

I have attempted to write to you in regards to the above account in order to preserve and exercise my rights under Florida and Federal Law. Instead of complying with the law in response to a reasonable dispute, you have chosen to violate numerous state and federal laws with regard to medical privacy, consumer debt collection practices, and credit reporting practices. Accordingly, I must inform you that the following events have occurred:

1. Midland Funding and Midland Credit Management are operating as Debt Collectors in the state of Florida without being licensed by the Office of Financial Regulation of the Financial Services Commission of the State of Florida, in violation of Florida statute 559.553.

2. Midland Funding, Midland Credit Management, and Orlando Regional Health Care have furnished medical records to parties not authorized by the patient to receive such records. This is a violation of Florida Statutes 456.057, 395.3025, and may also be a violation of 45CFR160 (HIPAA).

3. Midland Funding received assignment of the purported account without notifying the debtor within 30 days that the assignment had occurred. This is a violation of Florida Statute 559.715.

4. Therefore, Midland Funding and Midland Credit Management have each attempted to enforce a debt which they have no legal right to enforce, which is a violation of Florida Statute 559.72.

5. The fact that Midland Funding and Midland Credit Management are attempting to collect a debt in violation of State law, when they have no legal right to collect, is also a violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.

Unless your organization ceases all collection activity in connection with this account, I will be forced to file complaints with all applicable regulating bodies, including the Office of Financial Regulation of the Financial Services Commission, the Federal Trade Commission, and the Florida Department of Health Bureau of Consumer and Investigative Services. In addition, I may be forced to protect my rights by filing litigation in the Federal District Court in Orlando, Florida. Since this debt is time barred by the statute of limitations, I have no intention whatsoever of paying it, nor are there any legal remedies available to you in regards to this debt.

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Yea, but here's the skinny on that. HIPPA is federal law which takes precident over a business associates agreement. I think when they do send info to CA's they are to use numerical codes and not reveal the actual diagnosis or treatment info unles the patient signs a release form authorizing same.

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