A young dentists asked if it’s typical for a clause to be in an associate dentist’s contact that states that the associate dentist is responsible for for all or a part of any revisions that have to be done to the associate’s work after she leaves. An example would be re-doing a filling or a crown. If such a clause is typical, when should the arrangement expire?

A clause of this nature is not standard and should not be agreed upon by the associate. The problem here is who decides that the redo is indicated? You? The owner? A new associate? Some other dentist? Or the patient? This is a bad deal for the associate and I would not recommend doing business with anyone who suggests a contact that contains such language. To be frank, I would not even recommend negotiating with a dentist who even considered suggesting such a clause.

Putting yourself in a position where you have little to no opportunity to examine the patient, review the radiographs, and the chart within the context of the doctor-patient relationship prior to determining if the dental care you provided was sub-standard, is a terrible idea. It’s best to just say “no thanks” and find a better person to engage in a working relationship.