Legal advice for dentists and dental practice owners
We understand that setting up and maintaining a profitable dental practice is not a straightforward business. You need to make sure your property, employees, partners and commercial contracts are all in order so you have the peace of mind to get on with what you do best – delivering the highest quality of care to your patients.
With experts across the fields of corporate, commercial property, employment, banking and finance, we’ve got you covered.
We are experienced in dealing with issues across the board – including advice on uncompleted treatments, restrictive covenants, TUPE considerations, property matters, warranties and indemnities, property ownership and development including property purchases, sales, leases, planning and development to make sure your building always suits your dental practice’s needs.
Associate agreements including clarifying issues around employment status, handling any underperformance or substandard work, ownership of goodwill and deciding what happens when they leave, as well as partnership agreements and the requisite notice procedure to transfer a GDS contract are also our areas of expertise.
Specialists in CQC issues
In addition, and what sets us apart, is that we have specialist regulatory advisers who can assist across the board of CQC issues including CQC registration and challenging CQC inspection reports and enforcement action.
Great service is a given. What differentiates us is our commitment to going the extra mile for our clients. For us, it’s about building long lasting client relationships, understanding
the market forces within your sector and adding value over time.
Setting up a dental practice with complex security arrangements
We acted for a company which was setting up a new specialist-led dental practice, along with the bank which was providing the finance:
- The bank required a complex security package to be put in place, involving the borrower, operator and the directors. This included a combination of legal charges, debentures, cross-guarantees, personal guarantees and an inter-company lease.
- We also achieved solutions to a variety of title defects and guided the client through the CQC registration process to achieve the result they were looking for.
We understand the challenges that dentists and dental practice owners face:
The UK’s departure from the EU is likely to cause significant issues for the healthcare profession when it comes to staffing and materials.
- With approximately 20% of dentists currently working in the
UK being European, immigration status, right to work and
work visas are all concerns affecting dental practices.
- In 2017, the European Parliament agreed to phase out the
use of dental amalgam on environmental grounds, possibly
by 2030. Will this change once the UK leaves the EU?
- Cost of equipment and materials: a large proportion of equipment and
materials dentists use every day is sourced from countries all across
Europe. With the value of sterling plummeting, cost is a major issue.
The data that dental practices hold on their staff and patients will be subject to greater scrutiny, particularly as much of the data is sensitive and must be protected. Better training on GDPR is needed.
- Data security
- Data processing
- Impact of any practice merger activity on patient and employee data
- Dealing with freedom of information requests
- Employee data implications and issues.
Changes to NHS contracts
While historically NHS dentists were paid based on the number of treatments they provide, with the Government’s current drive towards preventative dental care and pilot schemes being rolled out across the country, this is set to change, and soon.
- Keeping the wider dental community aware of the new
model of contracts
- Outcome of the BDA’s negotiation with the NHS in late 2018
- Impact of the new contracts on dental practices’ turnover
Acquisition of dental practices where patients
have previously received sub-standard care
When a dental practice gets acquired, new owners may discover that
legacy patients need restorative treatment or intensive periodontal
management as a result of historic, sub-standard dental care. This is
not an easy conversation to have with patients.
- Loss of patient trust in the practice leading to shrinking patient lists
- Funding for treatments
- The role of General Dental Council
- Potential clinical negligence claims.