Business privacy laws

Is it a HIPPA violation to confirm admittance in a rehab facility & to refund money to a third party without patients knowing?

My boyfriend had paid ($30k in full) for me to enter a 90 day sober living facility upon completion of the 30 day program (unoffiliated with the Sober Living facility) I had attended. I completed the 30 day & never entered the Sober Living facility. I never filled out paperwork or set foot on their property. However, my boyfriend and i agreed to leave the money there in the event I decided I wanted to attend . Unfortunately, a year later my boyfriend passed away and a year after that I decided I wanted to attend. When I called to ask about my status with the rehab, I decided to talk to a very good friend that had worked there whom, at the time, was a high-up executive. He informed me that the full amount had been refunded to my boyfriends mother. Was it legal for them to do that?

Nathan’s Answer

By your own admission, you never filled out paperwork, or set foot on their property. Thus there is no protected health information that could have been generated that could have been passed along unless you're asking about something entirely different. Also, was there a written agreement between boyfriend and entity that they would hold this money for you until and if you decided to attend? If so, you may have rights. Speak to an attorney. If not, it'll be difficult to enforce a right you cannot provide evidence was in fact established, especially after your former boyfriend passed on and cannot testify to what you are alleging is a right.

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