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Author Topic: How would you handle this?  (Read 3516 times)

Kboeds

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How would you handle this?
« on: Mar 28, 2005, 10:57:54 PM »
I should have posted this a week ago, Guess I was trying not to think about it, but now that Spring Break is over, I have to decide if I am going to follow through or not.

DD was over the weekend before last. Saturday I was getting ready for my ODD baby shower and went out to the mailbox to hang balloons. Just so happen the mail person delivered the mail while I was standing there.
I went back in the kitchen and DD (Who has lived with BF and SM for almost a year) says, did you get my progress report?
I looked at her and said why would I get your progress report, you don't live here.  
DD said, well you get a copy too don't you?
I said only if I request it.

Of course at this point my mind starts going like crazy, wondering why she would ask me something like that.

You see, back in January I contacted the principle of her school by e-mail and explained who I was and that I needed to know what the school would need from me in order for me to receive her report cards and ARD review records. I told her I understood that I may need to provide documentation or sign something, I just needed to know what, and what was the best way to go about getting it to the school. I mentioned in my e-mail that the principle could check my daughters records and see that my name was on all her records prior to August of last year when she was enrolled in their school. I also asked that she not confuse me with my DD SM who has the same first name as I do.

Two days later I had a message on my phone at work from the principle stating that she had given my e-mail to the registrar who would be contacting me about getting my daughters report card and had also given the information to the Diagnostician at the school for the ARD records............. I Was Shocked!! I called my sister and asked if I should be concerned that my DD new school would release records so freely. After 1 email to the principle and 1 e-mail the the registrar I have both the report card and the ARD records mailed to my home.

Okay... back to the conversation with DD about receiving her progress report.

After thinking for a minute, I said ... so since you brought it up, I'm guessing you know I have requested your report card before?
DD said yes...
I said, how did you know that I requested your records?
DD said, cause the school called and asked SM (by name) if it was ok....

Okay.... Bad mom alert!!! I couldn't stop myself... I have been keeping my mouth shut about many things over the last few months and I was not going to let this one go.

I told DD that it was unbelievable to me that the school would call someone who doesn't even have a legal right to the records I was requesting to get permission to release them???????
I told DD that, that REALLY pissed me off and that I would be contacting the school and the school board to file a complaint. I said I don't care how many people tells she is your MOTHER.... she will never be. I said her name is NO-WHERE in our custody papers and the fact that not only does your school mail your school information directly to your SM they call her for permission to release records to your REAL MOTHER!?!?!
(DD report cards are not mailed to the parents of (child) they are not mailed to the BF... They are addressed to DD SM.....UGH!!!

Sorry for venting... what do you all think???
Should I follow trough with filing a complaint? Am I right in having a serious problem with the school not only contacting SM about releasing records to me but that they are allowing her to give permission for anything  at all??? If they had asked for a copy of the CO, or my ID or anything I would have fully expected that and provided it with no problem.



Thank for any imput you may have.
KB

P.S. SM called DD later that evening to let her know that her progress report came.. I only know the two worst grades.. an 11 in English and a 63 in Algebra. (She is doing so much better with them...don't you think)



olanna

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RE: How would you handle this?
« Reply #1 on: Mar 29, 2005, 09:45:40 AM »
Yes and you should quote the federal regulations that require the school to send you the information if you request it. Let them know that legally, the step mom has no legal rights with your child, including but not limited to, deciding if her mother gets to have a copy of her progress reports and reports cards. I would call the school, email the school and send a letter to the school.

Totally, completely and without a doubt, unacceptable.

Imom

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RE: How would you handle this?
« Reply #2 on: Mar 29, 2005, 10:27:51 AM »
First I usally do not reply but I do have first hand at this. I do not reply because my dh is a custodial parent and I am only a sm to ss. (4 bio), and I lurk on ALL of these boards to gather information from a NCP's side.

We were different though, we sent bm copies of reports cards, school work, calendars, etc. We did until this year. It had became a problem because bm second guessed everything. So dh just said fine you get your own copies/information directly from the school. There is no stipulation regarding these kinds of issues in the co, dh still sends bm a letter once a month regarding normal medical information and non regular school information (things like speech, tutoring if offered, etc then tells bm to follow up on the information if she would like.).

Okay.....this is what the FERPA states

Parent means a parent of a student and includes a natural parent, a
guardian, or an individual acting as a parent in the absence of a parent
or a guardian.

So this is where she (and I for that mater) gets away with this. I tried to find the site I found a while back that stated that a step-parent that lives with the custodial parent DOES have access to the records because they are ACTING as parent/guardian.

Don't get me wrong because I don't think that they should have asked her directly if you could have the records (even with my case).......but this is where they are and will be.

How do I know? Well because from day one Dh and I both have made sure bm was on all records that they are to release any information regarding ss to her. Bm complained once about them not giving her info but they do to me. I went to the school and tore them apart. I was told that bm has never called and if she did and if they had any question as to who she was or if they could give her info they would have called us. They even stated they would talk to me about this if dh was unavailable as even though dh & bm  have custody I was still acting as a parent/guardian as a sm who live with the custodial parent and they showed me the FERPA and respones from there attorneys regarding step-parents, web sites to visit, etc.

This could have simply happened here, they got your email and maybe wanted to make sure that you was the ncp. Yet, some schools still think they need the cp permission. My short answer they are covered as long as they provided you with access to the records and over covered to provide you with copies. If you read the FERPA they don't even have to copy them unless this is the only way you can see them, and this would be hard to prove, just because you live far away you can get there to see them. They can charge you copying fees if they do copy them.

But I would next time send one of the letters from this site to the school. Go to the articles and look up access to your child's school record. Use the one where is states about the ferderal law (FERPA) and state laws and that they do not need anyone's permission to give you the records. Send them a copy of your id and co.

I do see your point so don't get me wrong here. BUT on another note I also learned that step-parents are not allowed to sign records/forms with out a power of attorney. So make sure you check on that too. It may be different in your (kids) state?

olanna

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RE: How would you handle this?
« Reply #3 on: Mar 29, 2005, 12:12:58 PM »
While step parents may be allowed rights while the marriage is intact, they aren't promised *and* if that marriage disolves, it's like they never existed.

Imom

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Yes, that is very true.....n/m
« Reply #4 on: Mar 29, 2005, 12:55:40 PM »
fff


Kboeds

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RE: Yes, that is very true.....n/m
« Reply #5 on: Mar 29, 2005, 07:55:52 PM »
Thank you for the responses. I guess that is another big loop whole in the system.  You always hear how Step Parents have no legal say when it comes to their step children, then they have it in the federal law that anyone who claims to be taking care of a child can get any info they want on them??? A Guardian or someone acting as a guardian??? Unbelievable!!!!!
If the courts want the step parents to have legal say over step children then they should list them in the CO. It makes me sick that SM can sign for anything she wants to and there is nothing I can do about it..

Want an abortion???? No Problem..I'm your Smother I can sign for that.. Want a boob job??? No Problem.. don't need a parent for that..
SM just took her to the GYN last week and got her on birth control... Who gives a crap what Mom thinks.... GRRRR!!

Sorry, don't mean to sound pissy, but I have been the only one for 14 years to have anything to do with her medical care or schooling. Now in the past 3 months, I have had my daughters school contact SM for permission to release records to me, and had a medical provider refuse to release information to me stating that they would not get involved in a custody dispute and that the record was being mailed to the patient. I said the patient is a minor and they said we have Mom listed as the contact person and it will be mailed to her address. I said I'M THE MOM!!  They told me that they would be sending a copy to the Dr who requested the service and that I would have to get the record from them. I did get the records from the Dr. and there was no record of the evaluation. Dr's office said they never received anything.
So twice in 3 months SM has been given more rights then BM...

Some loop whole they have there isn't it??? Not to mention the all powerful PRIVACY ACT!!! OMG!! Don't get me started...

KB

Forthelittleones

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RE: Yes, that is very true.....n/m
« Reply #6 on: Apr 03, 2005, 02:50:06 PM »
Did they tell you in writing that they would not get involved in releasing your daughters medical records?

If not, send them a written letter outlining what they said and that you are requesting their records.  They need to let you know in 10 days if they are going to comply. If not, then they need to let you know the reason why they are not going to send them to you.

If they still dont send them to you, file a complaint with HIPPA.  As a parent you are still entitled to receive your childs records as long as your rights have not been taken away through a court order and as long as your state or court order gives both parents the right to get records.

On the court order, it doe not specifically have to say it.  In DH's order, both parents are able to get all medical records.

File a HIPPA complaint.  They sure wont like that...

Kboeds

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RE: HIPPA Complaint
« Reply #7 on: Apr 03, 2005, 07:22:21 PM »
Thanks forthelittleones,
        I had thought about filing a complaint but I wasn't sure who to file it with.

They have not denied my request in writing. I have only spoken to them over the phone. As a matter of fact I have only spoken to (I guess) the receptionist who answers the phone. The therapist that actually did my daughters evaluation refused to speak to me according to the receptionist. She said the therapist won't get invovled in our dispute. I told her there isn't any dispute, I just want to talk to her about the evaluation and I want a copy for my records. It was the receptionist that said they ONLY send out one copy of the report to the patient. That is when I told her the patient is a minor and she said they have Mom as the contact person. (Really SM)  I said what about the doctor? she said that they would send a copy to the doctor who made the request, but I now know that was never done. I have tried to call so that I can talk to the owner of the center, but I haven't been able to get through as of yet.  

So don't call? Only write a letter? When I write should I go ahead and send them a copy of my CO or just state in the letter that I have legal rights to a copy of my daughters record? You said they have 10 days to respond, is that per HIPPA? or do I give them that time frame in my letter?

The sad part is that no-one knows my daughters history or case like I do and they won't even allow me to be involved.

Thanks again for the info
KB

Forthelittleones

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RE: HIPPA Complaint
« Reply #8 on: Apr 03, 2005, 07:33:08 PM »
In order for HIPPA to investigate the complaint, you have to have made a request in writing.  they have to deny your request in writing.  If they do not, then HIPPA will still investigate.

Technically, they have 30 days to respond.  More than likely they will not.  I would use 10-15 business days as your guide.  Leave it up to them to ask to see your court order.

Address this to the PRIVACY COMPLIANCE OFFICER

Dear XXX,

Per our phone conversation on DATE, you stated that you would not provide a copy of my daughters report daughters mother.  As such I am allowed and not prohibited to receive all reports, tests, etc conducted on my daughter.

Although you stated you wouldn't get involved in the dispute, I am not sure what you mean.  There is no dispute.  I am a concerned mother who has medical history that is vital to Daughter's treatment.  

If it is your position that you will not supply me with the records, I requested, please provide your denail and associated reasoning in writing no later than X days.

I appreciate your time and effort in this matter.

MOM

Send it certified, return receipt requested.

If no response, file with HIPPA.  They will send you letters asking for more information and then will decide if the doctors office had a legal basis for denying you the records.  

Good luck.  PM me if you would like more help.

 

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