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You can enforce parental rights to medical and school records

Regardless of whether a parent has primary physical custody of a child, he or she typically retains certain rights as long as legal paternity was established through marriage, a paternity action or adoption. Two of those rights address the ability to review medical and school records of the child. A parent may need to enforce parental rights such as these, and protections are encompassed in both federal and Florida law.

Most Florida parents who are divorced share legal custody of their children. This means, among other things, that each parent has a say in the child's health care. In order to make informed decisions in this regard, the noncustodial parent needs access to the child's medical records. Under most circumstances, a parent is an exception to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act's provisions regarding privacy. Some state laws may also provide the right to a child's medical records.

When it comes to schools that receive federal funding, privacy of the records is protected under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. Even so, parents have the right to access school records, request changes and consent to disclosures. Simply being a noncustodial parent does not deny that parent these rights.

The other parent does not have the right to deny the noncustodial parent access to these records. Attempting to enforce parental rights to medical and school records may not be as simple as making a request to the other parent. It may be necessary to return to court. In order to help ensure the success of such an endeavor, it may be advantageous to secure the advice and assistance of a Florida attorney who regularly deals with these types of family law issues.

Source: Findlaw, "Father's Rights to School and Medical Records", Accessed on June 18, 2017

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