Picture this: You are struggling with depression and are constantly on the verge of a break- down with all the stressors in your life that bog you down. While your work performance isn’t necessarily reflecting the way you feel, you decide you need to take some time off to seek counseling, and receive some medical advice pertaining to your condition. You receive a diagnosis from your doctor, and upon returning back to work, you have concerned co-workers approaching you, and asking you how you are handling the condition you have been diagnosed with, which was only disclosed to your boss. You immediately feel overwhelmed, insecure, and as if your rights have been violated.
Well, if you have ever been involved in a similar situation where your medical information was shared with co-workers without your permission, you may very well have been a victim of violated rights, and Utah employment and labor law attorneys want you to know there is in fact something that can be done about this.
While many receive their health insurance from their employer, there is not always a guarantee that they not learn of a condition you simply wanted to keep private. Employment law lawyers acknowledge that when you provide medical information on a health insurance application, your employer may in fact learn of a condition you would rather have nobody know about, however, this does not mean they are legally permitted to share this information with anyone else. There are some instances, though, where your employer may need to disclose this information, and it generally in your benefit for them to do so.
For example, if you require accommodations due to a disability that may not be recognizable, your employer may have to inform others in a managerial position who directly work with you to ensure you receive the proper accommodations, and aren’t being frowned upon for not doing something you physically are unable to do.
As workplacefairness.org highlights some exemptions to this, never is your employer given permission, unless authorized by you, to share with other co-workers that have no impact on your position, medical information, especially something as private as seeking psychiatric help.
Labor and employment lawyers in Utah want you to be aware that there are laws that have been enacted for this specific purpose, such as the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), that restricts those from providing medical information to others than the ones you have given permission to do so.
Therefore, if you feel victimized by your employer for revealing a condition you are struggling from that if it had been up to you, would have been kept private, you may have a viable claim in which employment law legal representatives can intervene, and possibly help recover compensation for the damages this situation has brought on.
There are certain aspects of our lives that we would prefer to keep to ourselves, and should an employer take it upon themselves to violate our rights, labor law lawyers in Utah want you to know that you do not have to be subjected such treatment.