How to Sue a Dentist for Surgical Malpractice


You go to a dentist to get an impacted tooth removed or for a dental implant. Something goes wrong, and you have permanent damage, or you require a corrective procedure. You may have a claim against your dentist. Call a personal injury law office in Northridge, CA, for a free consultation. In the meantime, here’s a few things to remember.

Suing a Dentist

To be successful in a suit against a dentist, you must prove four things:

  • Duty: Your dentist has a duty to provide the quality of care of dentists practicing in the same community.
  • Breach of duty: You must show your dentist failed to meet the standard of care required of dentists in the community.
  • Causation: You must prove the dentist’s conduct caused your injury.
  • Damages: You must prove you suffered an injury.

Expert Testimony

You need an expert to testify that your dentist’s act or omission did not comply with the applicable standard of care. Your attorney will find an expert for you. The expert needs to be a dentist who performs the same types of procedures as your dentist. The expert can say your dentist was negligent, because he or she cut healthy tissue causing nerve damage or used an un-sterile tool causing an infection. The expert will explain the procedure that should have been followed, and how your dentist deviated from that procedure.


A personal injury attorney will obtain your dental records and consult with an expert. The expert will explain your injury and what additional treatment will be necessary. He or she will detail any permanent damage, such as paralysis of the lower lip from nerve damage. You can obtain the cost of additional dental expenses caused by your dentist’s act or omission and also get compensation for your pain and suffering.

Resolution of Your Case

Your lawyer will work with the insurance company of the dentist to reach a settlement that compensates you for your injury. Most cases settle, but if your lawyer can’t reach a fair settlement, the lawyer will litigate the matter. Your lawyer will prepare your case for trial and let a judge or jury decide the amount of money to award you.

If you find your teeth, gums, or face have been damaged by a dental surgery procedure, contact the Law Offices of Savin & Bursk for a free consultation.

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