i am involved in an auto accident case where i hired an attorney. without my permission he had given my medical records to a third party. i signed a release for him to get the records, but i did not think he was allowed to show them to anyone outside. did he have a leagel responsabilty to inform me and/or ask permission?
You need to speak to your attorney and ask him or her these questions. Your attorney wants the best results for you from this case and so he or she would generally not just be providing your personal information to people who are not involved. There are several reasons your attorney could be providing your medical history to a third-party. Your attorney is not a doctor and as such, would need to have a doctor who specializes in the area concerned to give an opinion of what the records may mean to your case. This is common and it is expected. If your case goes to trial, your attorney may need to have an expert witness (a doctor) testify as to what he or she believes your records mean. Your attorney cannot testify and your attorney cannot just present your medical records as evidence and hope the lay jury would understand what it means.
If your attorney was providing confidential information to others that had no bearing on your case, then that may be a violation of the Rules of Professional Responsibility and I would recommend you file a complaint with the Attorney Grievance Commission but you have not provided any information for any of us to determine what actually happened. So, help yourself out and sit down and discuss this with your lawyer. He or she really does want a favorable outcome for you - this is how he or she gets paid. Good Luck!
The comments listed here do not create an attorney-client relationship. The comments are for informational purposes only and are not to be considered legal advice. This attorney is only licensed in Michigan and does not give legal advice in any other state. All comments are to be considered conversational information and you should not rely on these comments as legal advice or in place of retaining an attorney of our own. The comments here are based solely on what you have provided and therefore are general in nature and with more specific facts or details a different answer or outcome could result. The legal system is not a perfect science and this attorney does not guarantee any outcome.
As repeated at various points in the film Cool Hand Luke, "[w]hat we have here is a failure to communicate." If you have placed your medical condition at issue by filing suit for injuries sustained in the accident, it's your lawyer's job to share those medical records with anyone in the litigation who requests them. It may also be that your lawyer needed expert opinion about your injuries. He should have made it clear to you that this is a part of every auto accident case where injuries are involved. Speak with your lawyer and let him know your concerns and your questions. It's his job to answer them and make you feel comfortable with what he's doing.
Not legal advice as I don't practice law in Michigan. It's just my two cents on the facts you describe in light of general principles of law. If you need legal advice, please consult a lawyer who holds Michigan licensure. That's not me.
Usually when you are in an auto accident and you hire an attorney to represent you, the only way he can obtain a recovery for you is to provide your medical records to the defendant, or, if needed, to an expert as well, to evaluate your claim. Since we do not know the circumstances as to whom he provided your records, no one here can really comment other than to advise you of the general protocol in these cases. If he gave them to a representative of the person who caused your accident, then this is what he had to do to move your case along. If a lawsuit were filed, they are entitled to this information (including much of your pre-injury medical information).
If you reason it out, ask youself how else do you think he can prove your claimed injuries to the third party who caused the accident?
I will evaluate your case for free. I can also refer you to an attorney to help you if I cannot help you. Joyce J. Sweinberg, Esquire 215-752-3732 www.jjsassoc.net Disclaimer: Please note that this answer does not constitute legal advice. It is merely intended to provide general information to aid the poster in finding answers to the problem posed. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship. In most cases, it is best to contact an attorney directly to find answers to your problems.
Car / Auto Accident Lawyer
My entire practice is representing people like yourself. The release I have people sign give me the right to consult and discuss with others your health/medical conditions. I'm sure your attorney has the same provisions in the release that you signed.
Furthermore, in order to efficiently and effectively represent clients attorneys need to discuss your case with other people. Your injuries and medical conditions are parts of your case.
I'm guessing your problems with your attorney go well beyond this issue. As the other people have stated, you need to call your attorney and discuss it with her/him. If that does not allevate your concerns, find another attorney.
I wish you the best