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  1. #1
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    Sep 2019
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    Hill Country of Texas
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    Question Step-Parent Rights

    My question involves a child custody case from the State of: Texas
    My daughter's divorce decree states that the other conservator (ex-husband) should be added to the HIPAA form at the pediatrician's office. Her ex-husband insists that his current wife should be added. As expected, this is causing problems because my daughter feels that the current wife should not be attending doctor visits, etc. I can find only vague answers to this conundrum. Can anyone help?

    Thank you!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    15,670

    Default Re: Step-Parent Rights

    Quote Quoting grandmotherinTexas
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    My question involves a child custody case from the State of: Texas
    My daughter's divorce decree states that the other conservator (ex-husband) should be added to the HIPAA form at the pediatrician's office. Her ex-husband insists that his current wife should be added. As expected, this is causing problems because my daughter feels that the current wife should not be attending doctor visits, etc. I can find only vague answers to this conundrum. Can anyone help?

    Thank you!
    Ok, there is no such thing as stepparent rights. However, it is possible for dad to designate his wife to represent him via POA in dealing with medical matters with his children.

    Mom does not have to add stepmom to the HIPAA form at the pediatrician's office, however dad might be able to add her later.

    My personal opinion, which has nothing to do with legalities, is that any parent who tries to insist on their new spouse being added to things like that is being a disrespectful A hole. However, again, my personal opinion has nothing to do with legalities.

  3. #3
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    Jul 2018
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    Default Re: Step-Parent Rights

    Quote Quoting grandmotherinTexas
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    Can anyone help?
    Help with what? I'm not sure what your question is.

    There's no obligation to do anything beyond what the divorce decree says, but it's certainly possible that your daughter's position is nothing more than petty bitchiness and jealousy that her ex-husband has moved on with someone else. Why shouldn't the stepmother take the child to a doctor visit if the visit is scheduled during the father's custodial time and the father isn't available to do it?

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Step-Parent Rights

    Quote Quoting pg1067
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    Help with what? I'm not sure what your question is.

    There's no obligation to do anything beyond what the divorce decree says, but it's certainly possible that your daughter's position is nothing more than petty bitchiness and jealousy that her ex-husband has moved on with someone else. Why shouldn't the stepmother take the child to a doctor visit if the visit is scheduled during the father's custodial time and the father isn't available to do it?
    Because that should never happen unless both parent's agree? Because that is serious overstepping? Because its piss poor co-parenting on dad's behalf?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: Step-Parent Rights

    Either party can add whomever they wish on the list of Hipaa authorized parties. The father would not have to be added as an authorized parry because he is a parent. He is who authorizes people to be able to be given info regarding the child along with the mother.


    Hipaa authorization, in itself, does not allow for the step mother to attend the child’s doctor visits. While the authorization would have to be in place for the step mother to attend the office visits, it is not permission for her to do so.

    How old is the child? The child can express their choice the step mother not be in the exam room along with the child. Unless there is some valid basis for the step mother to attend the exam, the doctor should respect the patient’s wishes and send the step mother out of the room.


    I don’t agree that a step parent being listed as an authorized party for purposes of Hipaa is improper in most circumstances as the step parent is often in a position where they need to know the medical info of the child. One needs to understand there is a huge difference between being an authorized party on regarding Hipaa and being involved with the treatment of the child. Hipaa deals only with information. It does not allow a party to make any sort of medical decisions for the patient.

    Quote Quoting llworking
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    Because that should never happen unless both parent's agree? Because that is serious overstepping? Because its piss poor co-parenting on dad's behalf?

    Sorry but I believe you’re wrong. A step parent is often called in to be a pseudo parent in many situations. I suppose the step parent isn’t supposed to take the child to school or extracurricular activities unless the mother agrees to allow that too. Sorry but the step parent often is called upon to do many things for the parent with the child at the moment. I have seen parents try to prevent the step parent from having any involvement with a child. The courts felt they were trying to cause problems and told the parent to back off. The parent without the child at the moment doesn’t get to control what happens when the child is with the other parent.

  6. #6
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    Jun 2006
    Location
    Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Step-Parent Rights

    It's overstepping for a stepparent to drive a stepchild to the doctor and receive information on behalf of the parent? Seriously?

    I'm with j/k; I think you are imagining that being authorized for HIPAA purposes gives the stepparent the right to be involved in the treatment. It does not.

    And if you do understand that and still think it's overstepping, then I think you need to get out more.

  7. #7
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    Oct 2006
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    Default Re: Step-Parent Rights

    Quote Quoting cbg
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    It's overstepping for a stepparent to drive a stepchild to the doctor and receive information on behalf of the parent? Seriously?

    I'm with j/k; I think you are imagining that being authorized for HIPAA purposes gives the stepparent the right to be involved in the treatment. It does not.

    And if you do understand that and still think it's overstepping, then I think you need to get out more.
    You have the right to your opinion, I have the right to mine. However one thing is absolutely true, stepparents who get overly involved in things like medical issues and educational issues cause more problems than its worth. If my husband needed me to take a child to a medical appointment I would be on the phone to the child's mother immediately to make sure that she was ok with it as well. If she preferred to take the child herself, I would happily bow out.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Step-Parent Rights

    I see. So Mom's wishes are the only ones that matter - what Dad wants is of no consequence. Mom is entitled to have everything exactly as she likes, and if it inconveniences Dad that's just too bad.

    Got it.

  9. #9
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    Jul 2018
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    Default Re: Step-Parent Rights

    Quote Quoting llworking
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    Because that should never happen unless both parent's agree?
    Disagree. What if the child is 16 and takes an Uber or Lyft to the appointment. Should mom have to consent to that?


    Quote Quoting llworking
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    Because that is serious overstepping?
    For a stepparent to take a stepchild to a doctor's appointment? That's just silly.


    Quote Quoting llworking
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    Because its piss poor co-parenting on dad's behalf?
    That doesn't answer the question.

    As you've said, we all have our opinions and, since these are not legal opinions, I'll not spend more time on this.

  10. #10
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    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: Step-Parent Rights

    Quote Quoting llworking
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    You have the right to your opinion, I have the right to mine. However one thing is absolutely true, stepparents who get overly involved in things like medical issues and educational issues cause more problems than its worth. If my husband needed me to take a child to a medical appointment I would be on the phone to the child's mother immediately to make sure that she was ok with it as well. If she preferred to take the child herself, I would happily bow out.

    What if the mother wasn’t available but she didn’t want the step mother to take the child to the doctors office?

    There is a huge difference between a step parent usurping the other parents position and simply acting like a blended family making life work.

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