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Comment on HIPAA / Should you modify the custom’s form service contract / webinar sign-up
November 5, 2021
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Comment on HIPPA from article on October 26, 2021
          Humorous use of HIPAA by an EMT at a Volunteer Fire Station.  He said we could not aim the cameras at a corner where they did their paperwork because of HIPAA. This was one of the locations to be viewed so I asked the Fire Chief who called BS and said that they just didn't want to be caught on camera smoking there. 
          I agree with the Fire Chief.  Alarm companies are not health care providers and unless under very limited circumstances [such as medical alert service] should not have a need for confidential medical information.  When alarm companies do have medical information in the PERS service they also have consent [if the alarm company has the Standard K&K PERS agreement] from the subscriber [customer – patient] to have and disclose medical information to aid in an emergency response.
Should you modify the custom’s form service contract
          We’re working to establish monitoring for two sites. The customer is requesting we sign their Service Contract which also includes our contract as an Exhibit. Our main concern is ensuring this service contract doesn’t override any protections in our contract. In addition, the Service Contract seems a little onerous. Would you recommend modifying it in any form?
          This is the kind of inquiry that is covered by the Concierge Program, which includes as one benefit a free monthly credit of half hour for contract review.  Since this question and a myriad of others comes up daily every alarm company should join the Concierge Program, today.  Contact our Concierge Program Coordinator Stacy Spector,Esq at or 516 747 6700 x 304 or visit our website and sign up:
          Including your contract as an exhibit is not enough information for me to know if you are adequately protected.  For example:
  *  the customer form contract could say that your contract, attached as an exhibit, is attached only for “scope of work” and not terms and conditions
  *  the customer contract could [and probably does] provide that its terms and conditions supersede terms of any other document, perhaps even naming the exhibit specifically
  *  even though the K&K contracts provide that its terms supersede other documents the contract at best it will get you into a contest of forms if a problem arises
          You have two other interesting observations about the customer’s contract:
  *  its onerous
  *  should you seek to modify it
          Keep in mind that there is a big difference between not liking a contract provision and not understanding it.  I can explain contract provisions; that’s my job as your attorney.  I can also help you seek to modify a customer contract you don’t like, though you have to be willing to incur the expense for such professional efforts [even a Concierge Client has expense after the first half hour each month], and before we even go down that path you should find out if the customer is amenable to discussion and changing its form agreement. 
          The safest way to resolve conflict of forms is to provide on the customer’s form or on your form that your form governs inconsistencies in the two agreements.  Easy to insert, but not that easy to get inserted.

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Ken Kirschenbaum,Esq
Kirschenbaum & Kirschenbaum PC
Attorneys at Law
200 Garden City Plaza
Garden City, NY 11530
516 747 6700 x 301