Button: Make a Payment Button: Newsletter Mailing List

Icon: Healthcare LawHands-On Experience

Providing legal advice

and services since 1977

Healthcare Newsletter

Refusing to treat non-paying patient okay?

July 11, 2013



Can a doctor (in private practice) refuse to see a patient that refuses to pay either his co-pay or if uninsured, refuses to pay at all?

Dr. R


Depends on the circumstances.  If the patient is an existing patient with a  follow up appointment or emergency situation requiring immediate assistance, yes you may have an obligation to treat regardless of payment.  However, assuming there are no continuity of care issues due to necessity and the patient has ample time to seek medical treatment elsewhere, you are not required to treat and private patient refusing to adhere to your office policy, i.e., refusing to execute you required forms, pay required payments, etc. 

For more info on a related topic, click here to reread how to terminate an awful patient.

Looking for the KK Healthcare Exchange?  Click Here. 

Looking for HIPAA and compliance forms?  
Click here to visit our website.
Have a question or comment for Jennifer?
Contact Jennifer at or  at (516) 747-6700 x. 302.
Interested in having Jennifer speak at an event or
at a residency/fellowship program?
Contact Jennifer directly at (516) 747-6700 x. 302 or at
Click here to learn about
K&K's Prepaid Legal Audit/Investigation Defense Now!