If your child is graduating from high school this spring, you and your family are about to undergo a major change. The person you have raised for the past 18 years is no longer a child. The law says that they are now legally an adult and can make decisions on their own, without your consent or interference.
Having a child head off to college is a time of great pride and uncertainty. If your child is going to school non-locally or out-of-state, you might have anxieties about him or her being so far away from home. However, distance isn’t the only thing that college parents have to worry about; they also have to deal with the fact that their children are becoming legal adults.
Watching your child leave home for the first time can be difficult. Not only are there all of the emotional issues attached to dropping your child off at the dorms, there is also the reality of all the legal changes that are likely happening at the same time. You may always think of your children as your babies, but the law sees your children very differently once they turn 18. Namely, since your children are no longer legally minors, the HIPAA privacy rule now applies to your child's medical records. This amounts to a major legal change which could prevent you, as a parent, from knowing that your children are in the hospital in the event of a major medical issue.