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U.S. District Court dismisses denturist suit

March 19, 2012

By Craig Palmer, ADA News staff

Dallas—A U.S. District Court judge Feb. 16 dismissed as “irrational, wholly unsupported by any factual basis” a denturist’s lawsuit alleging a conspiracy to deprive him and other denturists from practicing their chosen profession and naming as defendants the American Dental Association, Texas State Board of Dental Examiners and Texas Dental Association.

District Judge Sam A. Lindsay dismissed the case “with prejudice,” a legal term indicating that the plaintiff is barred from filing another case on the same claim. “The allegations against defendants are factually baseless,” said the memorandum opinion and order issued in White v. American Dental Association. “They essentially boil down to one singular premise: defendants, state judges and elected officials have deprived or conspired to deprive him and others of the ability to practice as denturists in the state of Texas.”

The complaint consisted of 28 counts claiming violations of various state and federal laws ranging from civil rights and federal racketeering to fraud and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

“In short, the claims asserted by plaintiff in the complaint are irrational, wholly unsupported by any factual basis and are the type of fanciful or delusional claims that warrant dismissal,” the court said.

All the defendants filed motions to dismiss and asserted various grounds for dismissal with a common thread of failure to state a claim on which relief can be granted. The dental board, however, argued for immunity because it is an agency of the state. “The court agrees,” the order said. Any appeal of the ruling would go to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.

This lawsuit is the most recent in a series of unsuccessful cases brought by denturists, others having been filed in Washington state, asserting a conspiracy by ADA and others to deny denturists their right to earn a living by prohibiting the practice or licensure of denturism.