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HIPAA Audits Net Millions In Fines
Are You In Compliance?


 By: Claudia G. Allen, Esq.  


    Strauss Troy - HIPAA audits net millions in fines     

If your business involves health care, or services to health care providers, are you sure you could pass a HIPAA audit? On May 7, 2014, the US Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) announced that it had levied a fine of $4.8 million against Columbia University and New York-Presbyterian Hospital.

The reason? Thousands of patients' records had become accessible over the Internet, resulting in a breach of the privacy and security rules in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).

When the penalty amount was announced in the Wall Street Journal, I expected it to send health care practitioners running back to their offices to see what vulnerabilities they could detect. After all, HIPAA's rules apply to all "Covered Entities" (i.e. any health care provider, whether a solo practice or a giant hospital system) and all "Business Associates" (i.e. any service provider, such as a billing company or lab). Everyone who provides health-related services is required to protect "Personal Health Information" (PHI) from unauthorized use or disclosure.

And yet, 18 years after enactment, it's evident that the breadth of HIPAA's requirements remains a mystery to many practitioners.

Here's What The HHS Office For Civil Rights (OCR) Is Looking For During An Initial Audit:
  • The designation of a Privacy Officer
  • Knowledge by the staff of the privacy rule for disclosures
  • Written policies for HIPAA compliance
  • Written Business Associate Agreements stating the service provider will protect PHI
  • Evidence that a risk analysis was conducted and remediation undertaken
  • Security for electronic medical records, including encryption of laptops and other mobile devices, and implementation of password and firewall technology

The OCR has announced that the full audit will dig into problems with PHI data breaches and security issues.  


Read more for five easy steps toward improved compliance.Read More



Strauss Troy Attorney Claudia Allen
Strauss Troy Attorney Claudia Allen
Claudia Allen works with Covered Entities and Business Associates to help answer questions about HIPAA compliance. If you're interested in a compliance audit, in-house training or need HIPAA compliance forms:


Contact Claudia at 513.621.2120 or

By: Charles C. Ashdown, Esq.




Umbrella policies are most often thought of as the ultimate protection if you face a claim or lawsuit based on liability arising from the use of your personal vehicle. But, like anything else, it pays to be a wise consumer and understand the basics of what is and isn't covered.

In Ohio, you're required to have liability coverage for your personal vehicle. Liability insurance provides you with protection for your liability to others. You can also purchase physical damage coverage which provides you with protection in the event of damage to your own vehicle. Such coverages are common with most automobile policies.


For the highest level of liability coverage, many opt for a personal umbrella liability policy. The key purpose of this policy is to protect you from liability that you may cause others, but at a lower rate than your primary insurance.   


However, remember that an umbrella policy, like your primary insurance, is nothing more than a contract between you and your insurance company, so read it carefully and understand what's covered and what's not. 


Learn more about umbrella policy benefits and exclusions. Read More 

Strauss Troy Attorney Charles Ashdown
Strauss Troy Attorney Charles Ashdown
Charles Ashdown is a partner in the Litigation Practice Group and Corporate | Business Practice Group. He has experience with litigating significant personal injury claims and assisting business owners with updating their insurance coverages.

Contact Charles at 513.621.2120 or


The dirge for bitcoin may have been a bit premature. Just last week,
Dish Network announced that it will begin accepting bitcoin as a form of payment later this year. Bitcoin mining hardware manufacturer, BitFury, also just announced $20 million in new financing that it'll use to further strengthen its international market presence while accelerating its production of ASIC, semiconductor and server products. 

Whether a harbinger for the future or a fad, the IRS wants its share. According to most analysts, bitcoin is now characterized as property and subject to tax thanks to IRS Notice 2014-21. Its taxation is dependent on the intended use and holding of the currency -- similar to the way that stocks and bonds are taxed.

Created in 2009, bitcoin is a digital currency that uses peer-to-peer technology to operate without the use of a middle man -- meaning no banks. Until this year, the bitcoin had gone fairly unregulated in the U.S., but now the IRS has developed 16 FAQs to guide taxpayers on tax treatment and tax compliance for use of bitcoin.Read More

Strauss Troy Attorney Patrick Newton
Strauss Troy Attorney Patrick Newton


Patrick Newton focuses his practice on corporate tax planning and estate plan preparation. He also has experience in handling tax controversy matters and has been admitted to practice before the United States Tax Court.


Contact Patrick at 513.621.2120 or
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Sharper Insight. Trusted Integrity. 

Serving the Greater Cincinnati | Northern Kentucky community, Strauss Troy has stood apart from the competition since 1953 by providing the highest-quality legal services in the most personalized, prompt and economical manner possible. As a full-service law firm, Strauss Troy has diverse expertise and a history of proven success. No matter what issue you face, the firm has the right professionals, working together as a team, to get you the answers you need.

Strauss Troy is recognized as a leading law firm in the Greater Cincinnati | Northern Kentucky region and is a Martindale-Hubbell Top Ranked Law Firm™ in Fortune Magazine. The firm is recognized as a U.S. News & World Report "Best Law Firm", and many of its attorneys are honored as peer-rated Martindale-Hubbell AV� Preeminent™ Attorneys, Best Lawyers� in America, Super Lawyers� and Rising Stars. The firm is also listed as a top law firm by the Cincinnati Business Courier.   

Strauss Troy President Marshall Dosker Helps Build Leaders Worth Following
At NKY Leadercast


Strauss Troy President Marshall Dosker With NKY Leadercast Emcee Durran Alexander
Strauss Troy President Marshall Dosker With NKY Leadercast Emcee Durran Alexander

Strauss Troy President
Marshall Dosker met with other local leaders at NKY Leadercast. Sponsored by Strauss Troy, the one-day leadership event was held at the Northern Kentucky University METS Center on May 9. A lineup of world-renowned speakers was broadcast live from Atlanta to more than 100,000 participants around the world. For more information about the Leadercast movement, click here.



Learn How Strauss Troy Helps Fast Growing Companies
Watch To Learn How Strauss Troy
Helps Fast Growing Companies


On June 5, Strauss Troy and the Business Courier will honor the region's 55 fastest growing companies at the 10th annual Fast 55 awards luncheon.


The Business Courier names finalists in five revenue categories. While all Fast 55 companies are winners, the top revenue-producing business in each category will be named during the event.


To be named a Fast 55 honoree, companies must be independent, for-profit or privately held, be headquartered in the 17-county, three-state Greater Cincinnati region, have a three-year operating history and have an average of at least $1 million in sales for the three most recent years, with no year less than $200,000.


Strauss Troy is proud to support our community's fastest-growing companies. "Our mission is to understand where you're headed and help you get there," said Strauss Troy President  Marshall Dosker.


For more information about Strauss Troy's Corporate | Business Practice Group, click here. 
On Fountain Square
Watch This Video To Learn More
Watch This Video To Learn More
Tuesdays | 11 AM - 2 PM | Fountain Square 
Click Here To Watch A Video Of A Previous Cirque Devou
Watch A Clip From A Previous Cirque Devou

Strauss Troy is proud to continue its support of the Kentucky Symphony Orchestra as it celebrates its 20th summer series at Devou Park. Please mark your calendar to join us. 


Cirque Devou Deux

Saturday, July 12, 2014

7:30 p.m.

 "Oye Como Va"

Saturday, August 2, 2014

7:30 p.m.   


Pops Firm: Anderson, Hayman & Mancini

Saturday, August 30, 2014

7:30 p.m.   


Concerts are held rain or shine. Parking is free throughout the park. T.A.N.K. shuttles run from Covington Catholic to the band shell from 6:00-7:30 p.m. Cost: $1 each way. Bring blankets or lawn chairs. Suggested donation -- $5 per person. Additional information can be found by visiting or calling (859) 431-6216.


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The Federal Reserve Building

Cincinnati, Ohio 45202




Northern Kentucky

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Suite 1400

Covington, Kentucky 41011



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