Red Flags Rule Postponed for 90 Days

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May 1, 2009

Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regulations require any business that may provide credit to customers to develop written plans to prevent and detect identity theft. The FTC has deemed dentists and physicians as creditors who are subject to the rule when they don’t receive payment in full from their patients at the time of treatment.

The American Dental Association (ADA) believes that characterizing dentists as creditors in this context is incorrect, and has undertaken efforts to reverse this regulation for dentists. The ADA mobilized its members to send 11,000+ e-mails to Congress. These efforts paid off as the deadline to comply with the rule has been extended by 90 days. Originally, this regulation would have gone into effect on May 1. The extension gives the ADA more time to challenge the rule’s applicability to small health care providers like dentists.

If you have already made your office compliant with the Red Flags Rule, we commend you for your time and effort to protect the identity of your patients. To assist dentists in complying with the rule, the ADA created a compliance guide, which is free to all CDA members and can be downloaded under the “Legal and Regulatory Questions” section of the practice resources page.

We will continue to keep you updated on the latest information about this regulation.