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Aspen Dental Class Action Lawsuit

By Matt O’Donnell

 

Aspen DentalAspen Dental, one of the nation’s largest corporate-dental chains, has been hit with a class action lawsuit accusing it of illegally owning and operating dental practices and of deceiving patients with aggressive sales pitches for expensive treatments after they’ve been lured in with promises of free exams and X-rays. Aspen Dental owns and controls 358 clinics across the country and markets to low-income patients that can’t afford dental care.

The Aspen Dental class action lawsuit was filed following a June 2012 report by PBS FRONTLINE and the Center for Public Integrity titled “Dollars and Dentists” that uncovered Aspen Dental’s practice of servicing patients who can’t afford a dentist and then allegedly locking them into debt. Some patients in the report also alleged they were overcharged and given unnecessary treatments.

The Aspen Dental class action lawsuit was filed October 18, 2012 by 11 patients across the country who accuse the company of violating laws in 22 states that require clinics to be owned by dentists actively performing procedures onsite. The laws are designed to prevent business interests from overshadowing those of patients.

Aspen Dental said Friday that the accusations in the class action lawsuit “are entirely without merit,” and that it provides support services to dental offices owned by local dentists.

“The dentists and staff at Aspen Dental offices around the U.S. provide access to high quality, affordable dental care for millions of patients,” the Syracuse-based company said. “Their singular commitment is to do what’s right for their patients.”

However, attorneys for the Plaintiffs say in the class action lawsuit that Aspen Dental trains the dentists and sets production goals for them, and accuse the company of illegally practicing medicine. They are seeking class-action status to cover potentially tens of thousands of current and former patients.

In 2010, Aspen Dental reached a $175,000 settlement with the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office over misleading information about discounts, consultations, financing and other promotions.

Plaintiffs in the Aspen Dental Class Action Lawsuit are represented by attorneys Brian Cohen and Jeffrey Norton.

 

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Updated October 22nd, 2012

 

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32 Comments

  • Anonymous October 30, 2012

    How would I go about being included in your class action lawsuit.

  • Anonymous October 30, 2012

    I have my own Aspen Dental nightmare which began in 2009. I am currently under the care a new dentist and oral surgeon who, I am sure would confirm their experience with the shoddy and expensive work done by Aspen.

    How would I go about joining your class action lawsuit?

    Thanks for your consideration.

    Victoria

  • Anonymous November 5, 2012

    Yes, I been seen at Aspen Dental, and I been overcharged for a cleaning and a couple cavities fill. They offer me to applied for a CareCredit to make monthly plans, besides the practically force me to buy an electrict toothbrush. I was surprise and I end buying it. I would like to file a complaint, and I would also like the name and address and phone number on who to contact on concering this lawsuit,,,,,,,on Aspen Dental

  • Anonymous November 19, 2012

    I would like to participate in the class action lawsuit. I am a victum also given the wrong ill fitting dentures

  • Anonymous November 30, 2012

    I would also like to be informed on how to go about doing something as this as well, in the process of hiring/obtaining a lawyer. Need advice and guidance in how to do so. – Jolene Wausau Wisconsin

  • Anonymous December 1, 2012

    I WOULD LIKE TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS LAWSUIT I COMPLAINED TO MY DENTAL INSURANCE (DELTA DENTAL) THEY WERE NOT ABLE TO HELP ME . I HATE MY DENTURES I GOT DENTURES HOPING I COULD SMILE AGAIN, BUT I AM SO EMBARESSED BY THE THE WAY I LOOK. .I AM SO GLAD THAT SOMEONE IS GOING TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT THE WAY ASPEN DENTAL HAS LIED AND TAKEN ADVANTAGE OF US HARD WORKING PEOPLE. THANK YOU SO MUCH.

  • Anonymous December 7, 2012

    I too have been the victim of Aspen Dental’s horrors. I had two root canals. Then Aspen Dental charged me for out of network fees When all my dentists and oral surgeons were in network. The problem is I Did not realize this until it was too late. They would not let me make an appointment until I paid my outrageous balance. My root canal really bothered me and I desperately needed to be seen, but because of their neglect I ended up having to save 600 $ to be seen. I ended up needing an extraction and I lost my tooth because their staffs irresponsible and careless charges. Finally my insurance told me about the overcharged fees and Aspen Dental was supposed give me a credit. What they Did was use my credit towards pulling my tooth! It was their fault in the first place I lost my tooth. If they never overcharged me, I would never haveadecayed tooth!

  • Anonymous December 7, 2012

    I also need advice as to How to join in the lawsuit. I took notes on every incident, who said what, dates, of calls, saved all the emails from the regional manager and have all my insurance charges, payments, and Aspen dental charges. Because of them I lost my tooth, have a second root canal that is uncomfortable, and need an implant which I can’t afford. Plus I spent many days, weeks, and months in excruciating pain and discomfort!

  • Donna Miles January 2, 2013

    I would like to know how to join the class action law suit. I have been fighting with Aspen Dental in Mechanicsburg, Pa for almost a year now. I got dentures last February. They have had to make 3 full sets and they still are not right. I not only need to feel normal again I need to find a way to have these dentures replaced. I am already $3400.00 out of pocket, not counting what my insurance paid.

  • Steven Singleton January 7, 2013

    Have had the experience with Aspen Dental of having all my lower teeth extracted and being given temporary dentures. Now the roots of the teeth that were extracted are growing up through my lower gum.,causing great pain when I attempt to wear my dentures. They charged me about $3,500 through Care Credit before the procedure even took place. I would like to know how to join the lawsuit.

  • Steven Singleton January 7, 2013

    I have had my own experience with Aspen Dental. A couple months ago, they extracted all of my lower teeth and immediately put in “temporary” dentures. The cost was around $3.500 charged through Care Credit before the procedure was even completed. I now have the roots of the teeth that were extracted growing up through my lower gum, making it very painful to wear my dentures. I would like to be a part of the class action lawsuit.

  • Renee Schwieger January 31, 2013

    I too was screwed over by Aspen. They charged me and then kept adding to the bill. I have partial plates I cannot wear and had to see a new dentist. (real) and found out that they pulled teeth I didn’t need pulled and that my plates are temps. To fix this it will cost another $4800 so I too need help.

  • Carla Covert February 1, 2013

    I would like to be a part of the class action suite. Aspen has put me through the ringer and I have suffered depression because of them.

  • Devin DeMeulenaere February 16, 2013

    I would like more info on Aspen Dental lawsuit. I have had my own nightmare with them and was mislead by them. I was tricked into costly procedures that were not covered by insurance even after Aspen Dental assured me that they would be. I have been paying on my bill with them for 3 years and it never seems to go down.

  • Rosalee Scott February 20, 2013

    I would like more information on the Aspen Dental Class Action lawsuit. How do I get included in this lawsuit I have a nightmare to share in this case. Would like to be able to obtain lawyers name.Over 18,000 dollars for 1 appointment and they charged me more for the third appointment which was included in the first estimate which I paid thru carecredit. the last $00 has went to collection. Thoughtthey were giving my a free electric toothbrush and found out they charged me for it. nothing was said about a charge, They said sign here that we showed you how to use it ,but was actually signing to buy!!!

  • Michele Metzger March 15, 2013

    I would also like to join the lawsuit. I have been dealing with ill fitted dentures since last April. They have remade them 3 times and they still do not fit. $4600 later and am not able to go out to a restaurant to enjoy a meal. This has been a nightmare.

  • Carlina Wiese March 26, 2013

    Aspen Dental has been overcharging my family as well and it is a battle each time. They receive money from the insurance company then charge us too even though the insurance company paid them!

  • Vicky April 1, 2013

    Yes. It’s unbelievable, and young inexperienced dentists do all of that crap. They(Aspen) screw their employees and their relatives, promising discounts on services and then they charge in full and demand to pay in a week or so. They(Aspen) don’t care. They have no morals. All the management and upfront have no dental previous experience or education. They pay embarrassing wages to staff and change them like “gloves”, that you,guys, wouldn’t find those who is in fault for the crappy dental services.Good like for you! I really hope that you return your money!

  • Mary Centeio July 3, 2013

    I want to participate in the class action lawsuit , Aspen dental deceived me and provide unnecessary treatment that I never ask and ended up paying high cost and put me in to debt.

  • Cheryl Smith/ Lane July 9, 2013

    We want to talk to the class-action attorney’s handling
    the Aspen suit, we also feel that we have been duped
    into paying a very high dental fee for services rendered.
    They charged $5,800.00 for the dental work. Please provide us with a phone number for the attorney’s
    handling class-action suit in Ohio. Please send to
    our e-mail address. Thank you.

  • Rose King July 16, 2013

    I want to join the lawsuit Who do I contact I was overcharged and they did procedures I didn’t want and cused me physical and mental anguish.. I am so afraid to go to a Dentist now I don’t know what to do…..

  • Patricia McLain July 27, 2013

    I too want to be included in the lawsuit. My dentures go not fit as promised. Can not eat much of anything with out hurting my gums, because they do not fit.

  • Patricia McLain July 27, 2013

    I too want to be included in the lawsuit. My dentures go not fit as promised. Can not eat much of anything with out hurting my gums, because they do not fit.

  • # 24 LeAnna Meyers August 12, 2013

    I LeAnna Meyers would like to join this class action law suit. I was misrepresented my Aspen Dental as they said I had 5 teeth that were damaged and needed to be part of a bridge. I had one tooth that needed a root canal. The bridge was placed on incorrectly I had to see a specialists to perform a root canal after aspen incorrectly finished my bridge. How do I join this lawsuit?

  • Kathryn Frazier August 14, 2013

    How can I join this lawsuit? I had (questionable) work done which they said would be covered by my HMO. At the time of service, I paid the co-pay and got a receipt. FOUR MONTHS later, Aspen began billing me for the insurance’s responsibility. I called my insurance to ask why they hadn’t paid, and they said that Aspen has not submitted a claim. No claim has been submitted still, many months later, though I’ve called them repeated, my insurance has called them twice, and I wrote to Aspen’s head office twice.My insurance company says they will cover the cost, but a claim must be made. When I asked Aspen why they won’t submit a claim, I was told 1.They don’t submit claims for any HMOs, because that’s not how HMOs work. 2. The claims they submitted were rejected (and yes, that contradicts) and 3. I should just let their office do their job, because insurance is not something I can understand.
    The head office says that they are so sorry for the experience I had at the Dale Mabry office in Tampa, FL–and then they do nothing. I have repeatedly demanded proof of a rejected insurance claim or something in writing that says I agreed to pay without insurance. They can provide neither, because they have neither. Now the unjust bill is in collections. Every time I talked with the people at the local Aspen, I pointed out that I’m trying to work it out and there is no need to send it to collections, because the bill is disputed. I was so sweet and patient, too. Honestly. I hoped it was just a mistake and I could keep going to their office. But now that it’s on my credit record– I’m not feeling so nice. This has cost me aggravation, credit rating, money, physical pain because I can’t transfer my dental records and go to another dentist for needed dental work, and it has affected my ability to do my job. If this suit is ended, please someone let me know how to start another or what to do. Thanks for letting me vent!

  • Kathlene McDanel August 18, 2013

    I am the POA and daughter for Kathlene McDanel and she is involved in the class action lawsuit. She has misplaced her paperwork, and also has a change of address. I need someone to contact me so that I can do a change of address for her so she can remain aprised of the lawsuit.
    Thank you…..Danielle Salmon

  • Tracy October 25, 2013

    count me in, too! still in pain after months of ugliness. please send me information on how to add my name to aspen’s very lengthy list of horror shows. thanks in advance

  • betty November 8, 2013

    They cost me 2500 and pull tooth that should have been pull was a good tooth push me into the sale pitch to do it and was best way to go but threw finance company that charges 22% interest. So count me in!!!!!!!!!!

  • Marsha Turner November 18, 2013

    I had crowns put in on my front teeth one of them fell out in two months they told me that my tooth was to short for the tooth to hold on and suggest more dental work which would cost me more money The cost of the dental work was 3,000 now I don’t want to go or do anything because of how my mouth looks

  • Tami McClurg November 25, 2013

    I also need to be included in this lawsuit, and no one’s comments are being answered here….I also cannot find a phone number to get in contact with the attorneys that are working on this lawsuit. I trusted Aspen, and got nailed with $9,000.00 worth of debt because of dental work that was “necessary”. I have photos of my face being severely bruised and swollen due to the dentist not being competent enough to work on a patient with an extremely small mouth….every time I had dental work done, my lips would split open and bleed from her pulling and tugging to gain access to the tooth being worked on, and I would be bruised for days following every single visit. Why did I keep going back? My teeth were in tough shape, and I needed the work done….according to them, I still need another $2000.00 worth of work done, but I am done with them….SOMEONE PLEASE GET AHOLD OF ME REGARDING THIS LAWSUIT!!!! PLEASE!!!!

  • Brenda Golden February 10, 2014

    I went also paid almost 5000. For dentures that do not fit I have told them they do not fit but they keeping telling me they supposed to be big and finally they said come in for Soft liners I paid to much to have to have soft liners and they look crooked not happy with them at all

  • samuel July 11, 2014

    Aspen is a business owned by a Dental Lab. Not a dentist as required by law. They also mark up procedures to draw the maximum fee from the insurance. They routinely write off co pays among other things

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