Visitor Question

Dental Malpractice in Root Canal Procedure?

Submitted By: Dale (Hemet, CA, USA)

I went to the dentist about 3 years ago to get a root canal. The dentist did the work and filled the tooth. Ever since the procedure I’ve had horrible pain in my tooth and jaw. The dentist said the pain is normal. My fear of going to a dentist again was high but today I went to a new dentist due to the pain and needed work done. The new dentist found that the first dentist broke a file off in my tooth and it’s wedged in my jaw. He recommended I see a specialist.

Is there anything I can do? Is this dental malpractice? Does the first dentist owe me compensation for the pain I’ve been in these past 3 years due to his negligence? Thank you.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.


Dear Dale,

Unfortunately the Statute of Limitations, or “time period” in the State of California within which a person has to either settle a personal injury claim or file a lawsuit is one (1) year. As a result, your time to pursue any lawsuit or other civil claim against the dentist has long passed.

If you are still determined to pursue a claim against the dentist contact the Dental Board for the State of California. Their web site is

You can go through their web site to file a complaint against the dentist. Fortunately in the State of California there isn’t a Statute of Limitations on complaints of dental malpractice.

Although we have offered you the web site of the California Dental Board we are not, under the limited facts you present, agreeing with or supporting your claim of dental malpractice. That issue will be solely within the jurisdiction of the Dental Board.

Learn more here: Filing a Dental Malpractice Lawsuit

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,


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