Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Are hospital medical record fees regulated by the State?

    Answer: Yes, Senate Bill 975 regulates hospitals regarding the retrieval and copy fees of medical records. These fees are changed yearly in response to the increase in the consumer price index. Please visit TXHIMA.org for current fee statutes.

  2. Are doctor's offices medical record copying fees regulated by the State?

    Answer: Technically, No. The Texas State Board of Medical Examiners "advises" doctors as to the per page charge they feel is reasonable but there is not a law that governs doctor's office specifically. Also, the Texas State Board of Medical Examiners does not indicate what fee is reasonable for completion of a Written Deposition and that is usually where the argument lies.

  3. If you submit a subpoena for records, why do custodians continue to ask for signed authorizations?

    Answer: Many Medical Records custodians attend seminars held by Medical Associations year round which tend to focus on obtaining signed authorizations, in all instances for the release of records. Although, Texas Rules of Civil Procedure (Rule 509 & 510 (exceptions)) are very clear, they are subject to interpretation as any other rule.

  4. What is the waiver/notice period and how does it affect the retrieval process?

    Answer: If you issue a Notice of Intention to Take Deposition by Written Questions, there is a Notice period that is required to allow all other counsel the opportunity to file Cross Questions, Objections, etc. in response to your Notice. As the Rule reads (TRCP 200.3), all responding counsel has ten days to file crosses or objections to the notice. However, a Notice of Intention must be served upon all parties and the witness at least twenty days before the deposition can be taken (TRCP 200). The deposition can be taken sooner only with an agreement by all parties (to waive the notice period). That is why the waiver period is twenty days, although, other counsel have ten of those days to file objections/cross-questions. In Federal cases, the waiver/notice period is fourteen days but allowing an additional three days for mailing or faxing of the Notice of Intention—so seventeen total days. Obviously, this time delay can seriously affect the ability to obtain records in a short period of time.

  5. Admissible - A subpoena issued and served with a deposition on written questions to prove up the records. No need to file an Affidavit.

    Inadmissible - A subpoena is issued and served with a deposition on written questions w/ a business records Affidavit. The deposition questions does not prove up the records; therefore, the Affidavit must be filed 14 days prior trial.

    By Authorization, with an Affidavit - The records are secured via Authorization supplied by the Claimant. Basically, we forward a request to the records custodian along with a business records Affidavit; this must be filed 30-days prior to trial.