What are my options if my orthodontist closed his office with no warning but I paid $4800 in full and am 10 months into a 24 month course of treatment?

UPDATED: Feb 24, 2015

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What are my options if my orthodontist closed his office with no warning but I paid $4800 in full and am 10 months into a 24 month course of treatment?

There are no details. The sign just said, “This office is permanently closed. Sorry for any inconvenience.” Would this be something covered by malpractice insurance?

Asked on February 24, 2015 under Malpractice Law, Ohio


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

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

It is unlikely that closing the office without any warning would be covered under malpractice insurance unless there is a provision in the policy prohibiting abandonment of patients.

It would be advisable to file a complaint with the state dental licensing board regarding abandonment of patients.

In addition, you can sue the dentist for breach of contract  for not completing your treatment  and not refunding your money.

Your damages (the amount of monetary compensation you are seeking in your lawsuit for breach of contract) would be the amount of the total you mentioned which represents the unfinished treatment.

If you complete your treatment with another orthodontist, your damages should include the additional cost of completion of the work by the second orthodontist.  You will need to mitigate (minimize) damages by selecting an orthodontist in the area whose fees are comparable to what you were paying with the first orthodontist.  If you were to select the most expensive orthodontist you could find, you have failed to mitigate damages and your damages will be reduced accordingly.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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