Can I sue my employer for disclosing health information about me?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Can I sue my employer for disclosing health information about me?

I work for a multi-billion dollar healthcare company. My role requires me to

maintain certifications and licensure through my state and county to be able to

legally preform my duties. Recently I tried taking my own life via a legally

prescribed controlled substance. This was an off duty occurrence. I voluntarily

informed my employer about the situation after my short recovery, as an

explanation for missing work. In short, my employer has chosen to pay for therapy, which is part of their administrative process to dealing with this situation. Along with requesting I have my physician sign a document explaining what I’m prescribed and that I am physically and mentally fit to preform. If I wanted to keep my job I had to follow along with their process. Approximately 2 weeks following this I received a letter from my county requesting a written explanation for my

Asked on March 11, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Unlike a doctor or an attorney, your employer owes you no duty of confidentiality when it comes to disclosing information to the authorities about a possible criminal act (misuse of a controlled substance). They also have, as a healthcare company, obligations on them relating to not employing in potentially sensitive positions employees who may misuse controlled substances, and could face liabilty for covering up such misuse. Under the circumstances, it is very likely that your employer was allowed to--and possibly even was required to--to disclose this information and would therefore not be liable for doing so.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption