Professional License Defense for Dentists in Alabama

The Lento Law Firm: Defending Your Alabama Dentist's License

Achieving a license to offer dentistry services in Alabama is an indication of your unwavering commitment to your field. You've poured considerable resources, time, and energy into building a profession centered on assisting others. Your dentistry license is not only your source of income but also a representation of your adherence to Alabama's rigorous professional and ethical criteria, not to mention the trust you've earned from the public.

But then, something happens. Maybe it's an honest misunderstanding with a patient. Maybe it's an oversight. Or maybe someone simply wants to retaliate against you and cause harm. Whatever the case, you've now been notified that someone has filed a complaint against you with the Board of Dental Examiners of Alabama, and your license is now at risk. This one complaint now has the potential to unravel everything you've worked for.

The worst thing you can do here is nothing--but you may be at a loss as to what your options are. Thankfully, you're not left to navigate this process alone. The Professional License Defense Team at The Lento Law Firm has successfully defended the licenses of Alabama dentists like you, along with many other professionals nationwide. We will leverage our experience with the disciplinary process to improve your chances of obtaining a favorable outcome while rescuing your reputation and your career. To arrange a consultation, contact us at 888-535-3686 or through our online form.

Regulation of Dentists in Alabama

The Board of Dental Examiners of Alabama oversees licensing, enforcement, and disciplinary actions regarding the practice of dentistry across the state. The state regulations regarding licensure and the standards of practice for dentists are embodied in the state's Dental Practice Act. The Board has the power to enforce these practice standards and implement disciplinary actions as necessary, including license suspension or revocation for dentists who are found guilty of violations.

Typical Grounds for Dentist License Revocation in Alabama

Most allegations that could cause an Alabama dentist to face disciplinary action against their license stem from some violation of the Dental Practice Act or a general breach of public trust. Here are a few of the most common issues that result in loss of license:

  • Sexual Misconduct: Engaging in a romantic/sexual relationship with a patient in your care is considered a serious ethical violation--and quite often results in having one's dental license revoked.
  • Fraud: Examples of fraud include (but are not limited to) false advertising, operating without a valid license, unlawful insurance claim "upcoding," overcharging patients or insurers, billing for services not provided, etc.
  • Substance Abuse: Abusing alcohol or drugs can often be grounds for loss of license, especially if someone reports you as being under the influence on the job or if the Board is convinced you have an addiction that affects your ability to perform safely.
  • Gross Negligence: You can lose your license over allegations of diagnosing patients incorrectly, making errors in prescribing medications or dosages, failing to provide essential treatments, or performing procedures incompetently such that patients are harmed.
  • Criminal Convictions: Certain criminal offenses, especially felonies and crimes involving moral turpitude, can disqualify you from possessing a dentist's license in Alabama.

Possible Disciplinary Actions

When you're accused of professional misconduct, the worst-case scenario is for the Board to revoke your dentist's license. However, there are other sanctions that the Board may impose as an alternative depending on the circumstances of the case. These include:

  • License Suspension: A provisional cessation of your practice.
  • Practice Limitations or Probation: This could involve restricting certain actions or banning certain practices, possibly under supervision.
  • Financial Penalties: The Board has the authority to levy fines for regulation breaches.
  • Continuing Education: If the Board determines the violation occurred from a gap in your education, it may require you to take CE courses as a condition of keeping your license.
  • Reprimand: For minor infractions, the Board might issue a formal caution, which becomes part of your record but does not limit your license.

However, keep in mind that even these lesser penalties can negatively impact your career as they become part of your public record, accessible to prospective patients, employers, healthcare institutions, and licensing boards in other states, thus affecting your ability to practice. In addition, the Board is required to report disciplinary actions against you to the National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB), a national database of pertinent information on practicing healthcare professionals. This database is readily accessible by potential hiring entities and state licensing boards, potentially impacting your ability to secure employment or obtain licensure in other states. The Professional License Defense Team at the Lento Law Firm can step in early in the investigation process to minimize these risks and potentially prevent sanctions from appearing on your record.

Areas We Serve in Alabama

Alabama, with its population exceeding five million across various urban centers, presents ample opportunities for healthcare professionals like dentists due to the high demand for healthcare services. At the Lento Law Firm, our Professional License Defense Team can assist dentists in virtually every municipality across the State of Alabama. However, many of our clients practice in or near the state's primary population centers. These include, but are not limited to:


Birmingham, Alabama, is a vibrant city steeped in history and culture. Known as the "Magic City" due to its rapid growth during America's manufacturing age, Birmingham proper is home to about 200,000, but the city anchors the largest metropolitan area in the state with more than 1.1 million total residents. Birmingham holds a significant place in American history, particularly for its pivotal role in the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s, with landmarks like the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute offering profound insights into that era. Today, the city boasts a robust economy driven by the healthcare, finance, and education sectors. Birmingham also prides itself on a flourishing arts scene, featuring numerous galleries, theaters, and music venues, including the historic Alabama Theatre.


As the largest city in Alabama, Huntsville boasts a population of approximately 215,000 residents. Fondly referred to as "Rocket City," Huntsville is home to the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, the nation's largest space museum, reflecting the city's long-standing association with America's space program. Huntsville also hosts Cummings Research Park, one of the world's leading science and technology business parks, underlining the city's status as a hub for tech innovation. Alongside its technological achievements, Huntsville offers a blend of Southern charm and modern amenities, making it an attractive place to live and work.


The state capital of Alabama, Montgomery, is home to just under 200,000. A city rich in history and Southern charm, Montgomery has played a pivotal role in defining American history, particularly as a significant site for both the Civil War and the Civil Rights Movement. The city is known for landmarks like the Rosa Parks Museum and the Civil Rights Memorial Center that honor its storied past. Today, Montgomery is an economic hub with a diverse economy focused on government, healthcare, manufacturing, and education. It's also home to Maxwell Air Force Base, a large training facility notably established on the site of the Wright Brothers' original flight school.


Home to 183,000, Mobile, Alabama, is a historic city that serves as a cultural and economic hub along the Gulf Coast. Founded in 1702 as the capital of French Louisiana, Mobile is recognized for its rich history, which includes influences from French, Spanish, British, Creole, African, and other cultures. The city is renowned for hosting the oldest organized Mardi Gras celebration in the United States, a festival that infuses the city with vibrant energy each year. Mobile's strategic location along the Gulf of Mexico has fostered a thriving maritime industry, and it's home to the Alabama State Docks, one of the largest seaports in the nation.

Overview of the Disciplinary Process for Licensed Dentists in Alabama

The Alabama Board of Dental Examiners follows a specific protocol for investigating complaints and enforcing disciplinary actions. If you are a licensed dentist in Alabama facing allegations of professional misconduct, here's a quick summary of the basic steps in the process.


Typically, the disciplinary process against dentists begins with a complaint lodged with the Alabama Board of Dental Examiners. Any person, regardless of their relationship to the dentist, can file a complaint. However, complainants against dentists are most commonly patients, their family members, fellow professionals, insurance companies, or any other member of the public who observes a possible violation of professional standards.

Preliminary Review

Upon receiving a complaint, the Board's Enforcement Group conducts a preliminary review and investigation to determine whether the complaint falls within their jurisdiction. The Team Leader of the group assesses whether any immediate action must be taken (e.g., temporary suspension of license) and appoints an investigator to look into the complaint.


Next, the assigned investigator begins gathering information to seek out supporting evidence for the complaint. This phase may include interviewing the complainant and potential witnesses, requesting a formal response from you, issuing subpoenas for documents, and more. When the investigation concludes, the Team Leader turns the Enforcement Group findings over to the Board.

Full Board Review

After the investigation, the Board reviews the findings to decide whether there's probable cause that a violation occurred and whether to dismiss the complaint or call a formal hearing. If it's the latter, you'll be notified of the date and time of the hearing.

Consent Order

In many cases, the Board may propose to have you sign a consent order to avert a formal hearing. Consent orders usually entail an admission of wrongdoing, along with applicable penalties and probationary terms. Accepting the terms allows you to bypass an extended disciplinary proceeding. Although not always ideal, a consent order gives your attorney a chance to negotiate for a lenient resolution (preferably one that enables you to keep your license or at least provides a pathway to reinstatement.

Formal Hearing

Absent a consent order, the formal hearing will be held in front of a hearing officer. The Board will present its case, and you have the opportunity to appear (ideally with a lawyer) to present your defense and argue why your license should be retained. The Board will then vote on whether to impose disciplinary actions against you, up to and including revoking your license.

Importance of Legal Representation in License Defense

While you may represent yourself in license disciplinary proceedings, it's generally not in your best interests. The Board's primary goal is to safeguard public health and safety, and they only need to establish your guilt based on the preponderance of the evidence. Licensing boards can err in their rulings, whether due to misinterpretation of evidence, insufficient investigations, or other biases--and there is no guaranteed presumption of innocence. This puts you effectively at a disadvantage. Engaging a seasoned license defense attorney can balance the odds and significantly boost your chances of maintaining your dentistry license.

The Lento Law Firm's Professional License Defense Team can aid in the following ways:

  • Review the complaint and evidence against you and formulate a strategic plan to counter it;
  • Advise you on your choices and the most effective strategy to settle your case;
  • Gather evidence and summon witnesses in your defense;
  • Negotiate with the Board at multiple points to get the complaint dismissed or secure less severe penalties and
  • Represent you at the formal hearing, if necessary.

Professional License Defense Attorney for Dentists in Alabama

Put simply, you have worked too hard to build your career as a dentist to have it derailed by an unfair allegation of wrongdoing, followed by a disciplinary process that may or may not give you a fair outcome on its own. By engaging our Professional License Defense Team at the first sign of trouble, you significantly improve your chances of negotiating a more favorable outcome, ideally one that preserves your license. The Lento Law Firm Team has nationwide experience successfully defending dentists and other licensed professionals who are facing challenges to their license. To discuss your case and explore your options, contact the Lento Law Firm at 888-535-3686 or reach out via our online form.


Attorney Joseph D. Lento and the Lento Law Firm are committed to answering your questions about Physician License Defense, Nursing License Defense, Pharmacist License Defense, Psychologist and Psychiatrist License Defense, Dental License Defense, Chiropractic License Defense, Real Estate License Defense, Professional Counseling License Defense, and Other Professional Licenses law issues nationwide.
The Lento Law Firm will gladly discuss your case with you at your convenience. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.

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