If my 14 year old son went for root canal but they did the wrong tooth, what should I do?

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If my 14 year old son went for root canal but they did the wrong tooth, what should I do?

They admitted the mistake.

Asked on January 2, 2012 under Malpractice Law, New York

Answers:

Thomas Reilly / Albert W Chianese & Associates

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

The first thing you should do is have your son seen by a differnt dentist to find out what treatment he now needs on the root canaled tooth.  Was the tooth that required the root canal near the tooth they performed a root canal on?  IF your son now requires a crown on that tooth or will when he is 18 or so, that is something that will need to be replaced over his life time.  With inflation that can be a significant cost.  Once you get an opinion as to what treatment your son needs you should contact an attorney to investigate the claim.  The root canal may not be performed well and if it is not corrected he may lose that tooth.  There are a number of issues to consider, you can contact me at your convience to discuss. 

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Malpractice is negligence.  Negligence is the failure to exercise due care (that degree of care in this case that a dentist in the community would have exercised under the same or similar circumstances to prevent foreseeable harm).

You should contact the dentist's malpractice insurance carrier and file a personal injury claim on behalf of your son.  Obtain your son's dental bills and dental report.  Your son's claim will consist of these items.  Compensation for the dental bills is straight reimbursement.  The dental report will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering which is an amount in addition to the dental bills.  If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the dentist's insurance carrier, reject the settlement offers and file a lawsuit for negligence on behalf of your son against the dentist.  Since the dentist has admitted liability, you should be able to easily prove negligence.  You will need to be appointed guardian ad litem to file a lawsuit on behalf of your son because a minor cannot file a lawsuit.  If the case is settled with the dentist's insurance carrier, NO lawsuit is filed.  If the case is NOT settled with the dentist's insurance carrier, you will need to file the lawsuit for negligence against the dentist prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or your son will lose his rights forever in the matter.

 


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