Dental malpractice cases happen more often than you might think. Although dental malpractice lawsuits are not as common as medical malpractice lawsuits, the consequences can be just as dire. In some cases, dental malpractice can lead to permanent damage, emotional stress, and even death. Dental malpractice cases can also be quite complex, and it can be challenging to determine whether or not you have a legitimate claim. In this article, we will take a deep dive into dental malpractice lawsuit, so you know all there is to know.
- What is Dental Malpractice?
Dental malpractice occurs when a dentist or oral surgeon deviates from the standard of care. Standard of care is the level of care, skill, and treatment that a competent dentist or oral surgeon would provide in a similar situation. Dental malpractice can occur in many different forms, including misdiagnosis, delayed diagnosis, mistakes during treatment, failure to provide informed consent, and more.
- The Elements of Dental Malpractice
To file a dental malpractice lawsuit, you need to prove four elements:
- Duty: The dentist had a duty to provide you with treatment.
- Breach: The dentist breached that duty by not providing adequate treatment.
- Causation: The dentist’s breach of duty caused you harm.
- Damages: The harm caused by the dentist’s breach resulted in damages.
- Common Dental Malpractice Claims
Some of the most common types of dental malpractice claims include:
- Failure to diagnose or treat periodontal disease
- Administering the wrong type or amount of anesthesia
- Nerve injuries or damage to the tongue, jaw, or lips during a procedure
- Failure to diagnose or treat oral cancer
- Failure to diagnose or treat infections
- How to File a Dental Malpractice Lawsuit
To file a dental malpractice lawsuit, the first thing you should do is contact an experienced dental malpractice lawyer. Your lawyer will help you evaluate your case and file the appropriate paperwork. Next, you will need to provide evidence to support your claim, such as medical records, x-rays, and expert witness testimony. Finally, you will need to prove causation and damages, which can be challenging.
- What to Expect During a Dental Malpractice Lawsuit
If your case goes to court, you may need to testify and provide evidence. You will also need to attend depositions and answer questions from the other side’s lawyer. The dentist or dental practice may try to settle the case before it goes to trial. If the case goes to trial, a judge or jury will decide whether or not the dentist is liable for malpractice and how much in damages you are entitled to.
Dental malpractice lawsuits are complicated and require experienced legal representation. If you believe you have been the victim of dental malpractice, it is important to act quickly. You should contact an experienced dental malpractice lawyer as soon as possible to assess your case. With the information outlined in this article, you are now equipped with the knowledge to identify if you might have a viable claim and what to expect if you decide to file a lawsuit.