The Ninth Circuit recently held in Webb v. Smart Document Systems, that a hospital could charge a third party a higher rate for copying and providing a patient’s medical records than the reasonable cost-based fee permitted under the HIPAA Privacy Rule. The reduced HIPAA fee for providing medical records is required only when the “individual” or the patient’s personal representative (which does not include legal counsel in most cases) requests his or her own medical records. The court found that the term “individual” does not include a third party, other than a HIPAA personal representative. Thus a higher fee for providing records can be charged for third-party requests, even if the third party is acting as the patient’s agent. The court’s decision, however, expressly did not address whether the higher fee could be charged when the records were requested by the individual for delivery to an agent or were requested on the agent’s letterhead with the patient personally signing the request. The fees charged when records are requested by a third party or a patient’s agent, must, however, comply with other applicable state law limitations on copy charges.