What it takes to defend a malpractice lawsuit

Most new dentists purchase a malpractice insurance policy hoping they never have to use it. Unfortunately, statistics show dentists have a high likelihood of being sued at some point in their career. It’s important to consider how prepared your insurance carrier is to respond and defend you, should a malpractice lawsuit arise.

Do all carriers handle the defense of claims the same way? The short answer is no. It’s important to select a carrier that has expertise in malpractice litigation. They should understand the venue, specific state laws, as well as clinical dentistry issues and how they apply to the laws of your state.

The successful defense of malpractice lawsuits also requires a claims team with:

  • An understanding of the scope of dental malpractice as determined by professional societies and state licensure boards
    • Malpractice can be viewed differently by state. Look for a carrier that has a clear understanding as to what constitutes as malpractice or a deviation of standard of care in each state.
  • A grasp of technical clinical concepts
    • It’s important that the carrier be familiar with the clinical concepts of dentistry and has a full understanding of what dentists do on a daily basis. This will help with communication between the dentist, lawyers and claims managers — building a stronger claims defense.
  • Access to highly qualified experts
    • At times there are cases where an expert witness is needed. Look for a carrier that has access to qualified witnesses across the country, as well as the entire healthcare spectrum.
  • The financial resources necessary to aid an aggressive defense
    • Depending on the nature of a claim, some malpractice cases can last multiple years. It’s important to have a carrier with strong financial resources to take on these cases and support it from start to finish. Simply put, you don’t want your carrier to be unreasonably constrained by a budget when it comes to defending your assets and reputation.
  • Expert knowledge of the law
    • The carrier and the attorneys they work with should understand healthcare law on a national, state, and local level. Having extensive and up-to-date expertise on the laws themselves is critical to defense.

MedPro Group holds a 95% national dental trial win rate. How did we get there? We’ve handled over 400,000 malpractice lawsuits since 1899. Our claims managers have on average 25+ years of experience and we have access to local and national defense experts in all 50 states. While you specialize in dentistry, we specialize in defending you.

To learn more, check out the resources below or contact MedPro’s dental team.

medpro.com/new-dentists • dental@medpro.com • 800-4MEDPRO

~Medical Protective

A.M. Best rating as of 7/14/2017. All data is MedPro Group internal data; claims data range is 2012-2016. MedPro Group is the marketing name used to refer to the insurance operations of The Medical Protective Company, Princeton Insurance Company, PLICO, Inc. and MedPro RRG Risk Retention Group. Visit medpro.com/affiliates for more information. ©2018 MedPro Group Inc. All Rights Reserved.

This content is sponsored and does not necessarily reflect the views of ASDA.

MedPro Group

As an ASDA member, you receive exclusive discounts with MedPro Group, the nation’s leader in dental malpractice insurance as well as: Occurrence coverage as low as $50 (ASDA member benefit); Pure consent to settle; and unmatched expertise from a company defending dentists since 1899.

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1 Comment

  1. This is some very wise information. Thank you for the post and I hope that it benefits someone before there is a malpractice suit.

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