Southfield Dental Malpractice Lawyer
It’s common knowledge that many people have anxiety about their dentist appointments. In most cases, the anxiety ends up being unfounded. However, in some cases, their anxiety is completely warranted. Experiencing dental malpractice is scary and frustrating. If you fear that your dentist or oral surgeon failed to uphold the proper standard of care, you may have a case. You need a dental malpractice lawyer on your side.
The dental malpractice lawyers at Lipton Law are here to help. An injured patient has the right to seek damages from a negligent dentist or oral surgeon. It can be difficult to handle these cases on your own. Working with an experienced medical malpractice attorney in Michigan can greatly help your case. To schedule a free consultation about your case, please contact the Southfield personal injury lawyers at our law firm today. Call our office at 248-557-1688 to establish an attorney-client relationship with us.
Dental Error and Dental Malpractice Lawsuits
Dental malpractice happens when a dentist causes significant pain or harm to a patient through negligent actions. These cases are similar to other medical malpractice cases involving doctors or nurses. You can even hold oral surgeons and orthodontists liable for malpractice. In the following sections, we examine what it takes to craft a successful lawsuit. We also examine the elements you must prove, as well as what damages you can seek.
Can I Sue My Dentist for Malpractice?
Yes, absolutely. When dentists or oral surgeons exhibit negligence and do bad dental work, you have a right to seek damages for your losses resulting from that dental work. You and your dental malpractice attorneys must prove certain elements in order to have a valid dental malpractice case. You can sue the following professionals for dental malpractice.
- Oral surgeons
- Dental hygienists
- Other dental professionals
What Is the Most Common Reason Patients Sue Dentists?
Certain dental malpractice cases are more common than others. Below, we list the most common reasons for filing a dental malpractice claim.
- Failure to diagnose oral cancer
- Tooth extraction problems
- Injury to the patient
- Improper administration of medicine
- Anesthesia failure or complications
- Failure to diagnose gum disease, periodontal disease, or other issues
- Extracting or operating on the wrong tooth
- Causing nerve injuries or permanent nerve damage
- Root canal injuries
- Complications with crowns or bridges
How Do I Know If I Should Sue My Dentist?
There are many telltale signs of when you should consider hiring a legal team for a dental malpractice claim. For example, maybe the dental professional performed a procedure you did not approve of. Maybe they caused injury or infection. Either way, if you suspect that your dentist did not uphold the appropriate medical standard, you may have a case. Speak with a qualified personal injury lawyer about your malpractice claim.
How Do I File a Dental Malpractice Lawsuit?
Some states require you to obtain an affidavit of merit from a health care professional before you can file a lawsuit. This affidavit asserts that your case actually has merit. Regardless, your attorney will be able to advise you on the steps to take before filing your claim.
Your lawsuit officially begins when you and your attorney file the complaint with the court. The dentist (the defendant in your case) will then have around 30 days to respond to your complaint. Then, both parties engage in discovery, which is the exchange of information.
Discovery usually includes information such as the dental records of the patient, treatment records, costs of the treatment, and evidence of this information. It can also include patient testimony, as well as testimony from the defendant and other witnesses. It is also common to take testimony from expert witnesses.
Lastly, the case has three potential paths. These paths are settlement, dismissal, or proceeding to trial.
Types of Compensation Available
It’s important to understand the compensation you may be entitled to if your dentist failed to uphold the proper standard of dental care. Personal injury cases aim to make the plaintiff whole. What this means is that, while a lawsuit can’t undo your harm, it can financially compensate you for your losses. Below, we outline the potential compensation available to you in a dental treatment malpractice case.
Dental Malpractice Settlement Amounts
Unless we can speak directly with a dental patient who suffered losses, it is very difficult to calculate the value of a malpractice case. Medical professionals, including dentists, open themselves up to medical malpractice lawsuits when they deviate from what is acceptable in their field. If a dentist breached their duty of care and that dentist caused injury to you, we recommend speaking with a dental malpractice attorney. When we meet with you, we can explain our prior results and establish an estimate of your case’s value.
How to Prove Dental Malpractice
Much like a medical malpractice case, you and your attorney must prove certain elements in order to win your case. We outline these elements below.
Elements of a Dental Malpractice Lawsuit
There are four essential elements of dentist malpractice. These elements are as follows.
This is usually the easiest element to prove. You and your lawyer will have several documents available to prove your patient status.
This is also a relatively easy element to prove. Generally, you must hire an expert witness to testify as to what the appropriate standard of medical care was under similar circumstances. It is important for the expert to be a similarly skilled dentist who has experience in the procedure in question.
That same medical expert must testify that the defendant breached the expected standard of care. Your attorney and the medical expert should outline the steps that the standard of care requires. This allows the court to clearly see where the defendant went wrong. It also allows you to show how the defendant’s actions led to injury to the patient.
Lastly, you must show that their negligence resulted in actual injuries. Otherwise, you cannot receive compensation. In order to have a successful case, you must use your medical records and expert testimony to prove this element.
Contact a Dental Malpractice Lawyer Today
At Lipton Law, we understand how scary and frustrating it can be to suffer injuries from dental malpractice. That’s why we offer an initial free case evaluation for those who suffered injuries at the hands of a negligent dentist. Our law firm stands ready to represent you in a court of law. To schedule your free consultation with us, please call 248-557-1688 today.
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