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Dimitry K., Esq.
Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 41221
Experience:  Multiple jurisdictions, specialize in business/contract disputes, estate creation and administration.
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My son was attending Franklin and Marshall College,

Customer Question

My son was attending Franklin and Marshall College, He was also on there lacrosse team to, while there he had a lacrosse injury and the trainer had him take Oxytocin, to make a long story short, he got addicted to opiates and his last semester there did not go to school.
No calls from his counselors or teachers, I found out his lacrosse coach new and not a word or a call to us about his problem.
I was not until a concerned payer on the lacrosse team got the nerve to call us and let us know what was happening to our son. We went there the following day to take Joey home with us.
Now three years later and 4 rehab facility's are we seeing an improvement in him and he want to return to a college to finish his education.
I had numerous discussions with the dean at Franklin & Marshal about his last semesters tuition, trying to work something out with them because I did not feel we should pay the whole tuition, some of the responsibility lies on there hands to, and with no one from the school calling us and if we would have none perhaps we could have taken care of his problem sooner.
Now here is Joeys problem, he wants to attend another college to finish his 4ht year and F&M will not release his transcripts unless they are payed in full and denying any responsibility in his problem.
Can I sue them over this ? besides the money of 4 rehabs that cost our family over 150K and the distress on our family, ( I am now divorced with Joeys mother ) I just feel they are not fair at all
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Dimitry K., Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question. I am a licensed Pennsylvania professional and will be happy to assist you this afternoon.
Angelo, the answer I may provide may not as you hoped to hear. Are you only looking for an answer pertaining to a lawsuit, or are you seeking a realistic answer as far as what your options and perhaps what type of liability they may have here. The answers may differ and I wish to know exactly what your expectations are before I post a response. Please advise.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Dimitry,I would like a legal view and what other options I have, and is it legal to hold my kids transcripts
Expert:  Dimitry K., Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Hi,Fair enough, so let me go down the list here. If I miss anything, please let me know and I will clarify. First of all, it is absolutely legal for any business and any college to hold transcripts if there is an outstanding balance. Since colleges ultimately provide a service, specifically education, and the transcripts are proof of that service, they can withhold that service until paid in full on the underlying debt. Claiming that they are in violation will not work since almost all businesses can withhold until paid. Attorneys can refuse to transfer the case-file and work until paid, accountants are free to withhold tax returns until compensated, and so forth. Now, as far as telling you about your son, if he was a legal adult (18 or over), they cannot disclose his information without his permission. Medical information is bound under HIPAA regulations, and you as a parent cannot even view his grades without his permission (even if you paid for the education). So blaming them for not telling you is not really possible--they would only be liable if you were listed as an emergency contact, your son was in an emergency situation such as the hospital and they refused to call you. Now, they may have liability to the child directly if they knew of the addiction and covered it up, or their doctors failed to pursue a 'reasonable standard of care' to get this resoled. But notice this is more of a medical liability and not a liability based on education. I wish I had better news but suing them here won't help, it would be better to negotiate a payment plan or a means by which they agree to waive part of the bill, but otherwise you have a duty to pay it if you wish to receive the transcripts. I am sorry. Sincerely, ***** *****