Do You Have To Give Your Medical Records To Your Spouse During A Divorce?
During your divorce, your spouse will likely ask you for several documents or records. One of the requests could be for your medical records. Even though the request might seem strange, the court might side with your spouse and order you to turn over your records. If you are concerned that your medical records could become part of your divorce, here is what you need to know.
Why Are Medical Records Important?
In some instances, there is no reason that your spouse would need medical records. However, there are some special circumstances that could make his or her request reasonable. One such situation is if you are asking for alimony.
Alimony can be awarded based on many factors, including your ability to work. If you are claiming that you are unable to work due to a health issue, your spouse has the right to review your medical records with an expert to determine if you truly are impaired.
Your medical records could also be important in child custody matters. Your spouse could claim that your physical or mental health has impacted your ability to care for your child. Your spouse and the court will need to review the records to determine if this is true.
What Can You Do?
Regardless of whether you have concerns about providing your spouse with the medical records, you need to talk to your divorce attorney before acting. Your attorney can review the request and determine if there is a legitimate reason for the request. He or she can help you understand the potential consequences of providing the records.
If you are concerned with the request, your attorney can act to limit just how much information is available to your spouse. For instance, if you want to keep him or her from accessing information about a past cosmetic procedure, your attorney can ask the court to restrict his or her access to the records.
If the court does side with your spouse regarding your medical records, your attorney can request a confidentiality order. The order can prevent your spouse from sharing any information that is included in the medical records and place limitations on who can see the documents and how many copies of the records can be made. Violations to the order then become contempt of court, which is punishable by a fine or jail.
Your divorce attorney can provide further guidance on how to handle your spouse's request for your medical records. To avoid claims that you are not cooperating, talk to an attorney, like one from Law Office of Jared T. Amos, as soon as you receive the request.