Visitor Question

Can a business control where you go for medical treatment?

Submitted By: Anonymous (Kentucky )

I have a patient who came into our office in Kentucky (chiropractic) after taking a nasty fall at a local hospital. The risk management office at the hospital told this patient that her chiropractic services would not be paid for because they did not tell her to come here. I would only imagine this is complete bull and the patient has the right to choose where they receive medical attention.

Can the business where a slip and fall accident happened control where you go for medical treatment? Thanks.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.

Answer

Dear Anonymous,

Anonymous (Kentucky)

No. A business owner cannot control where a person goes for medical, or in your case, chiropractic treatment. A business who opens his door to the public has a duty to make the premises safe for those who come in. If the owner fails to do so and as a result of his negligence someone is injured, then the injured party has a valid claim against the owner.

The facts you present don’t indicate whether the hospital was negligent in any way. In the scenario you present, the negligence, or the theory of “strict liability” doesn’t seem to be relevant anyway.

A person who is injured as a result of the negligence of another has an absolute right to choose the place where they want to be treated.

The negligent party though, does not have to pay the same medical or chiropractic facility chosen by the injured party. In your patient’s case there seems to be two ways to get the hospital to pay for your services. That is either by agreement, or if the patient receives a cash settlement and chooses to be treated at your facility.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Published: April 10, 2012

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