The Fourth Department, in this dog bite case, determined veterinary records are not protected by Education Law 6714 and are discoverable:
Education Law § 6714 (1) provides that, “[u]pon written request from the owner of an animal which has received treatment from or under the supervision of a veterinarian, such veterinarian shall provide to such owner within a reasonable time period a copy of all records relating to the treatment of such animal. For the purposes of this section, the term ‘records’ shall mean all information concerning or related to the examination or treatment of the animal kept by the veterinarian in the course of his or her practice. A veterinarian may impose a reasonable charge for providing copies of such records. A veterinarian may make available to the owner either the original or a copy of such record or document including x-rays, electrocardiograms and other diagnostic tests and may impose a reasonable fee for the reproduction of such copies.”
Nothing in the plain language of that statute prohibits a veterinarian from providing a copy of treatment records pursuant to a subpoena. Had the legislature intended to create such an exemption, it could have done so using language similar to that found in Education Law § 6527 (3), which provides that “records relating to performance of a medical or a quality assurance review function . . . shall [not] be subject to disclosure under article thirty-one of the [CPLR] except as hereinafter provided or as provided by any other provision of law” … . Ashley M. v Marcinkowski, 2022 NY Slip Op 04437, Fourth Dept 7-8-22
Practice Point: Pursuant to Education Law 6714, veterinary records in this dog-bite case are discoverable by subpoena.