Hurry Up and Wait for the Best Practice Evaluator


When it comes to selecting the right dental practice evaluator for your valuation, a little patience and homework can go a long way.

Hurry Up and Wait for the Best Dental Practice Evaluator


Details are critical when it comes to dental practice valuations, and so is great communication.

For the dental practice evaluator and for the dentist who needs the dental practice valuation as quickly as possible, there is sometimes a miscommunication between the 2 as one is trying to find information and the other is waiting for the information to be forwarded to him or her.

The evaluation of the dental practice can’t begin until the dental practice data is in the hands of the evaluator. Discussions may be taking place and verbalizing may occur, but the evaluator will want something in the file to rely upon when the conversations have been completed and the written report is in the process of being written and then checked for accuracy before being forwarded to whomever retained the evaluator.

Sometimes it happens that the dentist has been shopping for the cheapest price and quickest turnaround of the valuation process so that the entire process is slowed down because of the timing of responses that the dentist receives when analysts are having conferences with the dentist while he or she is trying to determine who to retain for this important job. Deadlines for discovery, depositions and pretrial hearings have specific times and dates when the court demands completion of the assignment to appear for his or her review and expression of an opinion. If the deadlines are not met, the ire of the court may be present, and the plaintiff or defendant will have no excuse that may be acceptable.

Does the dentist understand the urgency of the matter?

It is probable that the dentist is having a court room experience or other situation where the urgency of the matter is not known by him or her. This is because it is probably one of the first times that the dentist has been in a situation where someone is telling them what must be accomplished and when it is due. The dentist in his or her professional life is usually the one who is telling the patient what must be done and when the next visit will occur so that the project can continue.

The attorneys and evaluators are used to deadlines but the typical situation for the dentist is one of caution when working with the patient and understanding patient lapses in time for completion as well as forgotten or missed assignments needed for completion by the patient before the next visit with the dentist or hygienist. Lawyers, consultants, and dental practice evaluators will continue to work through the evening and on weekends to finish their responsibilities for the dentist and the attorneys, but dentists are not used to working at night, on weekends or holidays for anyone. This becomes a test of the attorneys and other consultants convincing the dentist that this is for real and that there can be penalties and other consequences to the dentist if things are not completed on time.

The evaluator and the attorney should have experience in the type of case that is being heard by the court so that the dentist has the best that he or she can afford for the presentation:

It is good for the dentist to interview a few attorneys, consultants, and dental practice evaluators prior to choosing which is the best for him or her and the type of case that they were involved with that may be going to the court room. An example would be that a personal injury attorney is not the one to represent a client who may be going through a divorce proceeding. An expert dental practice evaluator who cannot complete an assignment where an appearance in the court room to testify is part of the scope of the requirement for completion is the wrong person to be involved with litigation involved with a partnership dispute.

Being careful with friends who have good intentions but who offer to do something for free or at a deeply discounted price because they are friends is a warning sign that the attorney or evaluator is the wrong person to choose for representation if that person has little or no experience with what is being adjudicated. Remember to keep your friends close but not to engage them. Find someone who you have interviewed and has good credentials in the field of endeavor that you need for the valuation.

You don’t want to be embarrassed or your evaluator to be humiliated by a lack of knowledge with the subject matter. Worse than the embarrassment is the loss of money when the court decides who gets what from the arguments the judge has just heard. It makes no sense to wait until the last minute to retain those who will be needed when there is normally adequate time to prepare for the case to be presented to the court. The evaluation of the case can also speed up the settlement discussions once each side has something worthwhile to review in writing. This is where a good evaluator is worth a lot more than his or her charge since a settlement is worth a lot more than the cost in that it can result in settlement discussions where a trial is not needed, and a written settlement agreement is accepted by the parties and then endorsed by the parties to the case as well as the court.

Sometimes the dental practice evaluator must be retained who is out of the geographic area in which the dental practice is located. If that evaluator is the best one found, a little extra for travel, meals and lodging that is amortized over the rest of the life of the dentist but gets the best result for the dentist is a cheap price to pay for a victory.

Who else can the dentist rely upon for help and security with the matter?

Since almost every case involves money, someone who typically can be relied upon for additional support is the dental CPA. He or she offers a security blanket and a feeling of trust since they most likely have a good relationship with the dentist. The day-to-day contact with the dental CPA is usually that of the most contact of any advisor and someone who the dentist has relied upon before for important financial decisions.

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