Tag Archives: confidentiality

EEOC Wellness Program Regulations Offer Best Practices for Medical Record Confidentiality

As reported on our Benefits Law Advisor, the EEOC has issued proposed wellness program regulations. Much of the attention to those proposed rules understandably will be how they would affect the incentives employers have implemented to spur their employees to engage in healthier behaviors. The proposed rules also address, however, the confidentiality provisions under the Americans with Disabilities Act … Continue Reading

Facebook Post Breaches Confidentiality Provision of Settlement Agreement

A Florida appellate court has ruled that a teenaged daughter’s post on Facebook mentioning her father’s confidential settlement of an age discrimination claim breached a confidentiality provision in the settlement agreement, barring the father from collecting an $80,000 settlement. Gulliver Schools, Inc. v. Snay, No. 3D13-1952 (Fla 3d DCA Feb. 26, 2014). The plaintiff, Patrick Snay, … Continue Reading

Lawful Access and Improper Use of Computer Data Does Not Violate the CFAA

The Fourth Circuit recently held that the Consumer Fraud and Abuse Act’s (“CFAA”) prohibitions against unauthorized access or access in excess of authorization were not violated by an employee when the employee used his valid access to employer’s computer network to download confidential business information that he later used while working for a competitor. Prior … Continue Reading

Alleged HIPAA Violation Supports State Common Law Negligence Claim

A Missouri federal district court has ruled, in I.S. v. Washington University, that a HIPAA-covered entity’s disclosure of protected information can form the basis for a state-law negligence claim.  The Court reached this holding despite the well-accepted principle there is no private cause of action under HIPAA.  The plaintiff, I.S., was undergoing medical treatment for … Continue Reading

ADA Violated When Employer Responds to State Subpoena and Discloses Former Employee’s Medical Records

Companies frequently receive requests for information about current and former employees. These requests often come in the form of an attorney's demand letter or a subpoena and apply to the individual's medical records. Failing to carefully think through whether and how to respond can be a costly trap for the unwary.… Continue Reading

HHS Settlement Follows Enforcement Fine

In a uniquely timed second showing of enforcement authority, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced on February 24, 2011 a one million dollar settlement with a Massachusetts hospital that allegedly breached patient data.  This settlement announcement comes only days after HHS announced a 4.3 million dollar HIPAA Privacy Rule fine.  The Massachusetts … Continue Reading

Referencing Social Media in Non-disparagement Clauses

Confidentiality and non-disparagement clauses are customary in settlement agreements and severance contracts in the employment law context. These days, however, the temptation can be irresistible for disgruntled former employees to trash their former employer on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, on blogs, by text or e-mail or other electronic means. In the 1800s, … Continue Reading
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