Dentists and dental professionals are legally required to follow the generally accepted processes and procedures when administering dental care. If a dentist or dental professional fails to meet the applicable standard of care or fails to obtain consent to perform a dental procedure, you could experience painful injuries.
Injured people may require the assistance of an experienced St. Augustine dental malpractice lawyer to hold a negligent dentist financially responsible for their actions. A seasoned malpractice attorney could evaluate the improper treatment you received and help determine the potential for compensation. Allowing a legal representative to stand by your side may be the key to recovering for your dental malpractice injury.
Standard of Care for St. Augustine Dental Professionals
Following a dental procedure, a significant amount of pain or continuing symptoms may indicate the original problem was misdiagnosed or improperly treated. If so, this could be an instance of dental malpractice.
Dental malpractice cases in Florida are based on a negligence theory. The applicable standard requires every dentist to treat patients with the skill and care that a reasonably prudent dentist would exercise under the same circumstances. This means the patient must demonstrate a dentist breached the applicable duty of care and that the breach caused harm.
The standard is objective and not every injury will arise to negligence. However, dentists may violate this standard of care if they:
- Perform a procedure without informed consent
- Perform a procedure they are not qualified to perform
- Perform an unnecessary dental procedure
- Fail to diagnose the patient’s condition
- Fail to keep proper records
- Improperly prescribe medications
- Negligently perform a procedure
People injured by improper dental care could look to a seasoned dental malpractice attorney in St. Augustine to determine the cause of an injury. Once this is established, a legal representative could collect evidence of the reasonably accepted standard of care and any violations.
Compensation for Injuries Caused by Dental Malpractice
Patients who have been injured because of a dentist’s negligent actions could recover compensation for the harm caused by the malpractice. Depending on the injuries suffered, a well-versed St. Augustine dental malpractice lawyer could fight to recover compensation for:
- Pain and suffering
- Lost wages
- Medical expenses
- Future lost wages
- Loss of consortium or support
Injured patients are generally able to obtain compensation for economic damages—damages for specific expenses incurred as a result of the malpractice—without limit. Until recently, there was a $1 million cap for non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering, but the Florida courts ruled that this cap is unconstitutional.
In extremely serious cases, the court may award punitive damages. These damages are designed to punish the dentist for the malpractice and are generally subject to a cap unless if it is found the dentist specifically intended to cause harm.
Allow a Skilled St. Augustine Dental Malpractice Attorney to Help
Filing a claim alleging improper dental care in the St. Augustine legal system is complex and Florida maintains strict time limits for filing an injury lawsuit. After you have been injured due to improper dental care, you deserve to be compensated. A St. Augustine dental malpractice lawyer could work for full and fair compensation for your injuries. Reach out to an attorney to schedule a consultation about your dental injuries today.