Can I sue a pharmacy for canceling my prescription because they assumed that I could not afford?

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Can I sue a pharmacy for canceling my prescription because they assumed that I could not afford?

Called in a refill of my
prescription.Went to pick it up
and was told that it wasnt in and
that I probably coyld not afford
it anyway.Pharmacist said they
cancelled the order because they
didnt think that I could afford
it.

Asked on February 8, 2017 under Malpractice Law, Missouri

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

No, you can't sue for this:
1) It is not defamation, because they said it to you. Defamation is a public untrue factual statement made about you to other people, which can be shown to have damaged your reputation to/among others. Statements made to you are not defamation.
2) You can only sue for the actual injury or damages you suffered. The injury or damage from a cancelled refill and having to spend some time on the phone to get it reinstated is de minimis--a court would put either no or a trivial value on it.
3) There is no "cause of action" or grounds to sue becasue you were insulted or affronted; the law does not protect our feelings that way.
A lawsuit is simply not the appropriate tool here; what you can do is contact the state board which liceneses pharmacies and pharmacists and lodge a complaint, which may result in some disciplinary action being taken, or at least a black mark in their file.


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