Colorado Dental Malpractice Attorney


Medical Malpractice Lawyer Assisting Clients with Dental Malpractice Claims in Denver, Vail Valley, and Eagle and Summit Counties

When you visit the dentist’s office or have dental surgery and you end up suffering a serious injury, you may be able to file a dental malpractice claim. Dental malpractice is like medical malpractice: it refers to a situation in which a dental professional breached the standard of care and a patient suffered harm. A dental malpractice case does not necessarily mean that the dentist intended to hurt you, but rather that the dental professional’s negligence—careless or reckless behavior—led to your injuries. A dental malpractice attorney in Colorado can help.

Elements of a Dental Malpractice Claim

What does a plaintiff need to prove in order to win a dental malpractice lawsuit in Colorado? Generally speaking, there are four elements that a plaintiff must show in order to be successful:

  1. Dental professional had a duty of care to the patient (this is usually established through a dentist-patient relationship);
  2. Dental professional breached the duty of care by failing to provide adequate care (or, dentist was negligent);
  3. Patient suffered an injury; and
  4. Dentists’ breach of the duty of care caused the patient’s injury.

How Long Do I Have to File a Dental Malpractice Claim in Colorado?

Patients who suffer injuries while visiting a dentist’s office need to be aware of the statute of limitations for dental malpractice claims. The statute of limitations is a strict time period that specifies how long a plaintiff has to file a claim. Once the statute of limitations runs out, the law bars the plaintiff from filing a claim. In Colorado, the statute of limitations for most dental malpractice claims is two years.

This means that the patient must file her claim within two years of the date of the injury in order to be eligible for compensation. However, in some cases, it can take a long time for a patient to realize she was harmed. In these cases, the statute of limitations gives a patient two years from the date on which she discovered the injury. Yet decades cannot usually go by before a claim is filed. The statute clarifies that all malpractice claims need to be filed within three years of the actual injury unless certain conditions apply.

It is important to get started on your claim as soon as possible. The sooner you begin working with a lawyer, the sooner you may be eligible for financial compensation.

Damages Cap for Noneconomic Damages Under Colorado Law

Like many states, Colorado law (Colo. Rev. Stat. Section 13-21-102.5) imposes limitations on a plaintiff’s noneconomic damages award. While there is no cap on the amount of economic damages a plaintiff can receive (or the amount of objective, financial losses like medical bills and lost wages), there is a damages cap of $250,000 on noneconomic damages. Noneconomic damages are losses that cannot be quantified, such as pain and suffering or the loss of enjoyment of life.

As such, even if a jury award $1,000,000 in noneconomic damages, the plaintiff usually cannot recover more than $300,000. The total damages award—including economic and noneconomic damages—is limited to $1,000,000 unless the court determines that the amount is unfair to the plaintiff and should be higher.

Contact a Colorado Dental Malpractice Lawyer

To learn more about filing a dental malpractice claim, you should speak with an experienced Colorado dental malpractice attorney as soon as possible. Contact Bloch & Chapleau, LLC today to get started on your claim.