What are my rights when a medical doctor puts in a comment in her notes about “abusive home” on the health form that was shared with outside agencies?

She made a general statement of abusive home which I will have her remove. In the meantime, do I have any rights against this doctor? This comment unfortunately got shared with schools and camps before I noticed it on the form.

Asked on June 8, 2012 under Malpractice Law, Massachusetts


MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You may have a claim against her for defamation, especially if a) it was not true and b) you were denied entry for specific camps, activities and so on. If there are no police records on your family for anything remotely related to abuse, domestic violence and the like, then you stand a good chance of suing her for defamation and filing a consumer complaint against her (in addition to the suit) with the state medical board. Consult with an attorney who handles defamation matters (civil litigation) and see if he or she can help you determine if it is worth moving forward with a case.

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