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The Florida Statutes

The 2023 Florida Statutes (including Special Session C)

Chapter 456
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F.S. 456.059
456.059 Communications confidential; exceptions.Communications between a patient and a psychiatrist, as defined in s. 394.455, shall be held confidential and may not be disclosed except upon the request of the patient or the patient’s legal representative. Provision of psychiatric records and reports is governed by s. 456.057. Notwithstanding any other provision of this section or s. 90.503, when:
(1) A patient is engaged in a treatment relationship with a psychiatrist;
(2) Such patient has communicated to the psychiatrist a specific threat to cause serious bodily injury or death to an identified or a readily available person; and
(3) The treating psychiatrist makes a clinical judgment that the patient has the apparent intent and ability to imminently or immediately carry out such threat,

the psychiatrist may disclose patient communications to the extent necessary to warn any potential victim and must disclose patient communications to the extent necessary to communicate the threat to a law enforcement agency. A law enforcement agency that receives notification of a specific threat under this section must take appropriate action to prevent the risk of harm, including, but not limited to, notifying the intended victim of such threat or initiating a risk protection order. A psychiatrist’s disclosure of confidential communications when communicating a threat pursuant to this section may not be the basis of any legal action or criminal or civil liability against the psychiatrist.

History.s. 10, ch. 88-1; s. 33, ch. 92-149; s. 43, ch. 96-169; s. 83, ch. 97-261; s. 81, ch. 2000-160; s. 4, ch. 2019-134.
Note.Former s. 455.2415; s. 455.671.