Q. What should I do if a process server shows up at my office and tries to serve me with Legal Documents?
A. If the Legal Document is addressed to you personally, you must accept service, immediately contact the Office of General Counsel by telephone (305- 284-2700), and obtain Counsel’s instructions before taking any action, producing any documents or making contact with the attorney that issued the subpoena. If the Legal Document is directed to the University, do not accept it, and refer the process server to the University’s registered agent:
Andrea E. Orange, Registered Agent
University of Miami
Gables One Tower
1320 South Dixie Highway
Coral Gables, Florida 33146-2945
Q. What if the process server refuses to properly serve the Registered Agent, leaves my office and/or asks for my name?
A. Immediately call your supervisor or the Office of General Counsel. Under no circumstances should a process server effectuate improper service on an employee. Do not provide your name to the process server.
Q. What if the process server just drops the Legal Document on my desk and leaves?
A. Call the Office of General Counsel immediately to make arrangements to forward the document(s).
Q. What if a subpoena or other Legal Document is inadvertently accepted by me or another employee in my office?
A. If a Legal Document is inadvertently accepted, the recipient must immediately notify by telephone (305-284-2700) and email the Office of General Counsel. The Office of General Counsel will advise if the recipient should hand deliver or otherwise send the Legal Document(s) served to the Office of General Counsel.
Q. What if I am personally served with a subpoena addressed to me concerning the University?
A. If you are served with a subpoena (naming you personally) concerning the University, either requesting the production of University records or your appearance at a deposition, or both, you must accept service and immediately contact the Office of General Counsel by telephone (305-284-2700) and obtain Counsel’s instructions before taking any action, producing any documents or making contact with the attorney that issued the subpoena.
Q. What should I do if I receive a Chapter 766, Florida Statutes, Notice seeking information within a certain deadline/time-frame (this includes any attorney letter request referencing Fla. Stat. §766.204)?
A. The Notice/request should be sent to the Office of the General Counsel.
Q. Does the University require a properly served subpoena for the release of patient information?
A. The University of Miami complies with HIPAA, and all state and federal laws, rules, regulations, regarding patient confidentiality and disclosure of patient records. This includes all statutory notices and requests for patient records. Therefore, process servers seeking to make service upon the University with subpoenas for deposition or for MEDICAL records or information, including doctors’ notes, patient information, and any other type of medical information must also be referred to the Registered Agent. This does not include patient and/or attorney letter requests. See this FAQ section regarding how to handle demand letters, letter requests from government agencies, and letter requests from patients for their medical records.
Q. Does the University require a subpoena for student transcripts and student records?
A. The Registrar’s Office routinely responds to valid letter requests from current and former students seeking copies of their transcripts. All other requests however, must be made through a subpoena. The University complies with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), in connection with the disclosure of student’s records. For more information please see http://www.miami.edu/index.php/about_us/hea_student_consumer_information/ferpa/.
Q. What should our office do if we receive a charge/complaint or request for information from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the Florida Commission on Human Rights or the Miami Dade Equal Opportunity Board? Who should I contact?
A. Contact the Office of Workplace Equity and Performance immediately.
Q. Our office received an inquiry regarding a charge/complaint or request for information or notification of an audit from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Who should I contact?
A. Contact the Office of HIPAA Privacy and Security immediately (305-243-5000).
Q. Will the University accept Legal Documents on behalf of employees regarding PERSONAL matters unrelated to the University?
A. The University will NOT accept service when an individual employee is named in a personal, non-University-related legal action. If a process server contacts the University to serve an employee personally in a non-University related legal action, then the University shall permit the process server to make service on the employee in a private area designated by the University. See Stat. §48.031(b). The University, however, has no obligation to force an employee to accept personal service of process. Personal information regarding employees (e.g., home or work addresses, work, home, or cell phone numbers or any other identifying information) will NOT be provided to the process server without a court order. In the case of non-University related matters, the employee should seek the advice of his/her own attorney.
Q. I received a letter demanding payment from or threatening legal action against the University. What department should I notify?
A. Upon receipt of such a letter, the recipient should immediately call the Office of General Counsel (305-284-2700) and either fax (305-284-5063) or send by courier the original letter or demand to the Office of General Counsel.
Q. What should I do if I receive a letter request from a patient or a patient’s attorney requesting medical records?
A. When a department receives a request for medical records from a patient or patient’s attorney (that is not a subpoena), the request should be sent to the medical records department for your facility or to the departmental medical records custodian to respond to the request. All such requests should be HIPAA compliant. Please consult the Authorization Checklist to determine if the request received is compliant. For any additional questions, contact the Office of HIPAA Privacy and Security (305-243-5000).
Q. What should I do if I receive a Subpoena by MAIL or letter request from a Government Agency?
A. The University of Miami cooperates with all local, state and federal law enforcement agencies. Anyone presented with or having received via standard U.S. mail a subpoena from a government agency (e.g., State or U.S. Attorney’s Office) should immediately contact the Office of General Counsel.
Q. What should I do if I receive a Subpoena by MAIL for records only WITHOUT deposition or appearance at trial?
A. When a department receives a request for records in the form of a subpoena by mail, the recipient should immediately scan by email to email@example.com or send by courier the original subpoena to the Registered Agent.
Q. How are writs of garnishment, court are ordered child support, and tax levies handled?
A. The Payroll Office will make every attempt to notify an employee when a notice of an IRS levy or child support order is received. Consumer garnishments are handled by the Office of the General Counsel which directs the Payroll Office to withhold from the employee’s pay as appropriate. Employees should contact the IRS, the local Child Support Enforcement Agency, or their attorney for further advice or information.
Q. What should I do if an officer or agent has a Search Warrant or agency investigatory request?
A. Employees approached by law enforcement officers (state or federal) seeking witness testimony, records, or other University information should immediately contact the Office of General Counsel. If an employee is presented with a search warrant by a police officer or other government official they should immediately contact the Office of General Counsel.
Any questions regarding this Policy should be directed to the Office of General Counsel.