New Privacy Laws Affect How Spouses Can Protect Each Other In Emergencies

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By Deborah Dillon

New Privacy Laws Affect How Spouses Can Protect Each Other In Emergencies

When you pledge to be together ‘for better or for worse’ as part of your wedding ceremony, you assume that by taking those very vows that you will have the legal capability to take care of each no matter what happens throughout your married life. Unfortunately, that is no longer the case. Did you know that new privacy laws no longer allow spouses to do any of the following for each other without prior written authorizations:

-pick up x-rays or other test results at hospitals, doctor’s offices,

imaging centers, etc.;

-get medical information from doctors or hospitals;

-get health information, ask questions or be each other’s health care


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-get information from Medicare, Social Security, or other government


-ask questions, resolve problems, make payments or any other activity

for any bank, investment, or other financial accounts that don’t have

both names on them;

-ask questions, resolve problems, make payments or any other activities

on any loans, credit card accounts, mortgages, etc. that isn’t in both


-ask questions, resolve problems, call for service or change services for

telephone, cable, utility, cell or any other accounts that isn’t in both


The list of things that spouses can no longer do for one another is long and getting longer. These laws are not just inconvenient, they can become huge obstacles when the unexpected happens and one of you has an accident or sudden illness and your spouse must undertake important financial, household, insurance, medical and other matters for you until you are on your feet again.

Before you get too comfortable believing that these types of things will never happen to you, you should know that the Centers for Disease Control statistics show that 90 percent of us will have some period of disability during our lifetime – whether for just a few days or longer. With ever increasing life expectancy in the U.S. and medical treatments that both save and prolong life, it makes sense that some period of disability is more a matter of ‘when’ then ‘if’ it happens.

When the unexpected happens, it’s too late to put into place the legal safeguards necessary to allow you to give each other the help you need when you need it the most. So, take the time now to prepare for the inevitable day when you or your spouse will need the kind of help that only you can give with the proper written authorizations in place. One comprehensive and affordable option that will allow you to do this is at

The list of authorizations is long and includes all areas such as household, small business, financial, medical, minor children, personal, pets, small business and estate matters. It doesn’t have to cost a lot to prepare for unforeseen events. You just have to know what needs to be done and how to get that information in the hands of the right people. We can help you do that.

About the Author: Deb Dillon is the founder and creator of She was diagnosed with a brain tumor and it changed her life completely and from this experience came LivingSmart, thorough legal guides to protect yourself and your family from life’s unexpected events by planning for them in advance. LivingSmart Guides address all important aspects of life – including medical, personal, household, financial, minor children, pets, small business, and estate matters.


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This entry was posted on Thursday, June 20th, 2019 at 1:14 am and is filed under Loan Agreements. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.

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