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? about court and medical records


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ok so in about a week my husband will be getting with a lawyer so we can go to court for custody of his daughter.

ok so the thing is we just recently found out that his daughters mom knows about me having been in the hospital and being on meds.

well apparently his mom has or had been telling her all this stuff about me and i guess my step daughter took a note book home where my husband wrote down symptoms i had been having for my dr.

ok so now the question...when this goes to court does anyone know if my drs. the hospital therapists and all will have to give over records?

any time i saw anyone they said we fight that courts do not violate the patient confidentiality or whatever but still in some cases that records are turned over.

now it has been a long while since i have been very "sick" i guess you could call it. i am doing alot better now and the paper she found is over two yrs old. so i really do not know how much that will have to do with anything. but the thing i am worried about are the therapy records and dr records cause alot of the stuff that was going on i dont want anyone to know. let alone to be heard in a public court room in a small town. i just do not know anyhow any info will help. sorry i made this so long.

oh also if the drs do have to give the reports over can i ask them not to release certain info in the records? again any info will be of great help

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  • 1 month later...

I have no answers for you, I'm afraid.  Just saw this query had gone unanswered and felt bad for you.

Sorry you've had such a hard time. Does seem one would have some rights to privacy here.  Maybe your notes could be gone over by a mediator or uninterested third party and it could be declared  that none of the contents had to do with the sensitive legal issues of child abuse, threats to harm others, etc (those are the areas a therapist is legally bound to disclose info anyhow)

Guess we all need to go to priests instead, huh?  Looks like they don't have to disclose anything - even murder - if it's confessed in the sacrament of confession.  That DOES seem unfair to others - like us Jews (not to mention Wiccans)!

You need a lawyer, and I think you realize it.  How about trying Legal Aid?  Otherwise , you may have to decide between relinquishing the custody fight and being publically embarrassed. Almost seems like blackmail! 

PS Do I have this right? The custody battle is between the son, our bsband and his mother?  Guess you two aren't very good friends, are you? 

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I don't have any experience with child custody cases, but have a couple points.

- If they want to obtain your medical records they will have to submit a subpoena request to the judge stating what records they want, and the justification.  Your lawyer should have the opportunity to comment or object to the request.

- The judge may deny their request, approve it, or approve it with modifications or restrictions. When a subpoena is issued it is delivered directly to the doctor's office.    The doctor's office must provide exactly what is ordered, to the person to recieve it, by the deadline. If they do not comply they are personally subject to criminal prosecution. (When I received subpoenas I always read them carefully and provided exactly what was ordered.  Medical offices get subpoenas all the time.)

Again I don't have direct experience in such a case, but I have a hard time imagining that psychiatric records would be released. If anything, I would think that the judge would order Social Services to conduct a review of your and probably both homes for suitability. They might interview your doc, maybe asking nothing more than "Do you consider X to be a suitable step mom?" or "Is there any reason why you think X would not be suitable?".   

You know what? The person who has the answer is your LAWYER.  He does this for a living, he knows the system, and should be able to answer your question in 60 seconds or less.    No need to speculate any further.

Good luck, don't worry.  I don't think your outlaws will get your psych records.

A.M.

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A.M.

What do you thinkl will be the fate of that notebook the daughter sneaked out of the home and gave to her grandmother?  THe notebook where hubby was keeping a record of stepmom's symptoms? Geez, what a lousy thing to get your granddaughter to do!  Wonder how old the little sleuth is.  Sounds there are some relationship issues in the offing whatever the legal outcome is (and yes, this is a legal issue).  I hope for everyone's sake, there is some quality family counseling required by the judge.

Speaking as someone who survived (not really) a divorce where no one DID hammer it home to the dad that  the children  needed for the parents to remain cooperative adults - if only while the kids were watching... ;) and :- (

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from what i have learned about child custody cases, it seems that they can request that you be evaluated for uh "fitness" as a parent, so to speak.  i'd ask your lawyer if this extends into prior psych records.  my experince with this issue is close to 20 years old, so probably no longer relevant.

good luck.

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Quick thought--a notebook snuck out of your house would likely be deemed inadmisable as evidence.  Afte all, it's essentially stolen, and thus presenting it is a Fourth Amend,ent violation. I'm assuming this would be the same in a custody hearing as it would be in a criminal court.

If you've already had the hearing, I'd like to know how it went.  if not, hey, update us!

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