What are my options if my son has a scar from a dentist drill across his face?

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What are my options if my son has a scar from a dentist drill across his face?

My son went to the dentist for 2 crowns. The dentist afterwards came out and said my son was one of the best patients he has had. Then he states that he accidently ‘scratched’ my son with the drill. The scratch is worse then a scratch, plus it goes from the corner of his mouth to under his chin and then curves up. It looks like a big Nike swoop. I do not want to sue, I understand accidents happen, however, if my son has a scar, what do I do to get it fixed?

Asked on December 9, 2016 under Malpractice Law, Kentucky

Answers:

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

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Prior to filing a lawsuit for negligence against the dentist, it may be possible to settle the case with the dentist's malpractice insurance carrier.
When your son completes his medical treatment for the scar and is released by the doctor, obtain your son's medical bills and medical reports (I assume that your son is a minor and therefore there isn't any wage loss claim).  Your son's claim filed with the dentist's malpractice insurance carrier should include those items.
Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of the injury and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering which is an amount in addition to the  medical bills.
If the case is settled with the dentist's malpractice insurance carrier, NO lawsuit is filed.
I understand that you don't want to file a lawsuit, but if you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the dentist's malpractice insurance carrier, your only recourse is to file a lawsuit for negligence against the dentist.  If your son is a minor, you will need to be appointed guardian ad litem to file a lawsuit on his behalf because a minor cannot file a lawsuit himself.
If the case is NOT settled, the lawsuit for negligence against the dentist must be filed 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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