Am I entitled to my money back for a canceled medical procedure?

UPDATED: Oct 30, 2011

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Am I entitled to my money back for a canceled medical procedure?

Recently, I went to the dentist and consented to have my credit card charged up front before services rendered. I decided at some point to cancel one of the procedures. The office refused to give me back the money for that procedure, claiming that it was too late; it had “bought the materials for me.” It also claimed that because I had signed a paper, that this meant that I was contractually obligated to complete these procedures or if I canceled, pay for them. There’s nothing on this “contract” that says that. It’s only a list of the procedures and the bill tab. Am I entitled to a refund?

Asked on October 30, 2011 under General Practice, New York


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

First, if  subject to or based upon your representation that you would have the procedure done, the dentist did buy certain supplies or  materials for that procedure, then the dentist office could likely charge you for the actual cost of those materials, if they are not ones easily and readily used for other patients or other procedures.

Second, as to whether you have a right to cancel the procedure and get your money back (less any amount for special ordered materials; see above), that depends on what was said in any documents, contracts, agreements, etc. you signed, as well as in any marketing or advertising materials associated with them and incorporated by reference into them. As a general matter, if you sign an agreement to have a procedure done, that probably does consitute a contract, even if it does not

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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