Loose Lips Can Sink Ships: Waiver of Privilege

Accident Benefit Reporter Volume 15, Issue 2 | November 2014

Posted November 1, 2014
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Many of you provide treatment to people recovering from serious personal injuries. It goes without saying that confidential information entrusted to you by your patients within a professional relationship should be carefully guarded – confidential information should not be disclosed without the patient’s authorization, unless otherwise required by law. Unfortunately, sometimes the most routine interactions with patients can jeopardize this confidentiality. This is particularly the case for patients who are involved in legal proceedings and who may forget to heed their lawyer’s advice not to discuss the details of their lawsuit with their treatment providers. While it is certainly not a treatment provider’s responsibility to prevent such inadvertent disclosures, an awareness of the potentially harmful ramifications on a patient’s lawsuit can perhaps help preserve the patient’s legal “zone of privacy” with their lawyer.

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