What is HIPAA law?

If you are a medical professional, people trust that you will do your best to treat their illnesses and take proper care. They tell you about personal issues that they would not necessarily tell anyone else. This is very sensitive information, and thanks to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), you are required to keep everything a patient shares with you confidential. However, this does not mean you cannot share this information if a patient gives you permission to disclose his or her health records or medical conditions with other specific parties. If you are a medical professional, here are some questions you may have regarding HIPAA law:

How is HIPAA law enforced?

Essentially, the United States Department of Health and Human Services uses an Officer for Civil Rights to ensure HIPAA laws are enforced. The OCR can conduct compliance reviews, investigate complaints, and educate providers on following HIPAA rules. If you are to violate any part of the HIPAA law, you may face civil or criminal penalties.

What are some of the penalties for violating HIPAA?

If you violate HIPAA, there are four possible penalties you may face, with increased severity:

  • If you committed an offense against HIPAA but can prove you did not do so knowingly, you may face a fine anywhere from $100-$50,000.
  • If you violated HIPAA law and claim you had a reasonable cause to do so, you may face a $1,000-$50,000 fine.
  • If it is confirmed that you willfully neglected the HIPAA law in place, but you corrected your offense in a certain period of time, you may face a fine between $10,000-$50,000. However, if you did not correct your willful neglect, then you may face a $50,000 fine. 
  • If you have violated HIPAA law multiple times in the same year, you may face a fine of $1.5 million.

Whether you pay out $100 or $1.5 million, no innocent medical professional should have this stain on their record. If you believe you were wrongly accused of violating HIPAA law, then it is important you hire an experienced attorney who knows the ins and outs of medical malpractice law. These accusations can have a serious impact on your career, and a $1.5 million fine can be financially crippling. Do not hesitate to reach out and receive the legal help you need.

Contact our New York City firm

When a medical professional is accused of misconduct, it is essential that they retain strong legal representation. If you require a medical law attorney for your legal matters, call Paul E. Walker, an experienced New York City OPMC & OPD Lawyer. Please contact the Walker Medical Law firm to set up a free initial consultation.