What you need to know about malpractice consent-to-settle

By July 30, 2013 December 1st, 2013 No Comments

Dental malpractice insurance policies can be confusing and intricate, and somewhere in the middle of all of the policy language you will often find a consent-to-settle provision — one of the most important parts of the policy for a dentist to implant dentist london

In essence, the consent-to-settle provision establishes a malpractice insurer’s rights, duties, and obligations to an insured with regard to the settlement of a claim.

Why is this provision so important? Depending on how a malpractice insurer defines consent in a policy, dentists may find themselves in a position in which a claim has been settled on their behalf and they have not agreed to this settlement. When this is happens, the dentist has lost the final say in settling a claim.

While marketing material or “company philosophy” may generally state that a company gives an insured consent, you should investigate the actual policy language. Upon inspection of the actual language, affordable dental implants london you may find exceptions that remove the requirement that the malpractice insurer obtain the dentist’s consent and instead gives all authority regarding settlement back to the carrier.

With this in mind, here are nine of the most common exceptions found in dental malpractice policies and a brief description of how they operate:

  1. The hammer clause: If you refuse to consent to a settlement and elect to contest or continue to contest a claim, the company’s liability for loss shall not exceed the amount for which they could have best cosmetic dentist london  settled such claim had you consented, plus claim expenses incurred prior to the time the company made such recommendation.
  2. “Unreasonable”: You have consent authority unless the insurance company deems you unreasonable in withholding your consent.
  3. Board approval: You have consent authority as long as the company’s review panel or board agrees with you that your performance met the standard of care. If they disagree, the board assumes consent authority on your behalf.same day teeth london
  4. Binding arbitration: You have consent authority unless the company disagrees, at which time they submit your refusal to consent to binding arbitration.
  5. No longer insured by the company: You have consent authority unless you are no longer insured by the company at the time settlement or trial occurs. Other policies similarly state: You have consent authority … unless you no longer have an active policy with the company at the time of settlement.affordable cosmetic dentistry london
  6. Moved out of state: You have consent authority unless you have moved out of state prior to the time of settlement or trial.
  7. Unavailable or cannot be located: You have consent authority unless you are not able to be located or you are otherwise unavailable at the time of settlement or jury trial.
  8. License suspended: You have consent authority unless your professional license has been suspended, revoked, or surrendered at any time during the claim process.
  9. Deceased or incompetent: You have consent authority unless you are deceased or deemed incompetent…read more
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