Vancouver dentist overfilled root canals in 4 of my teeth, causing severe pain, and necessitating thousands of $$ of ongoing remedial work by (other) dental specialists: othodontist; endodontist, etc. How do I proceed in order to have financial redress - I just want my expenses covered/refunded. BC Dental Assoc. say they will try mediation by phone with offending dentist - but I need to know waht if he refuses? How do I get hold of my dental records? I have copies of all my SS receipts (so far), but expect that the remediating specialists will be reluctant to give info against a colleague.
I am sorry to hear this happened to you.
Let me explain the law about malpractice and then I will also suggest a way of finding a lawyer.
What you should know is that to succeed in a malpractice claim you have to prove the dentist owed you a duty of care and that either there was negligence or that the care provided was below standards of practice and then you have to prove that you suffered damages. The first and third factors are obvious.But to determine whether there was negligence or not you would need to see a medical malpractice lawyer who would need to request the records and then have an expert review them.You cannot sue successfully if there was no negligence. Sometimes things go wrong because of the nature of what is happening as nothing is perfect so proving negligence is really the main issue here.Does that make sense?
In terms of the records the dentist has a legal obligation to provide you with a copy of all the records.
What I suggest you do is first consult with a malpractice lawyer face to face.
You can contact the BC Branch of the Canadian Bar Association and use their Lawyer Referral Service. You will be given the name of a lawyer and can consult with the lawyer and the first half hour will be $25.The number is:604.687.3221 or 1.800.663.1919.
Then you will have a better idea of what your chances of succeeding are.
And I suggest you discuss damages for pain and suffering as well as just your out-of-pocket expenses as you have suffered severe pain.
If he does not want to mediate then you have to sue him.
You can sue for up to $25,000 in Small Claims Court and self-represent.
So it would make sense to do that in most cases.
But it may also make sense to have the lawyer send the dentist a demand letter.
He has insurance and it could be that the insurance will pay you to stop you from suing.
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Just wnated to thank you for your excellent advice. I now know what to do, step by step. By the way, do you think a lawyer would represent me on a contingency basis - my cash is all used up paying dental stuff. Thanks again
If this is a sure case and there is enough money involved a lawyer will take this on a contingency basis.
Any chance you can take my case on? I'm so impressed with your immediate grasp of the situation, and your sensible advice. I'll understand if not allowed. But thanks again, really!
Thanks but we aren't allowed to have direct contact with the customers and actually I am in Ontario anyway.But you will find a good lawyer for sure.Just don't feel you have to take the first one you meet if you aren't sure. You can use the referral service as many times as you need to.
Cannot thank you enough!
Take good care and enjoy the long weekend.