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Missouri Delta, dentists settle complaint

January 20, 2015

By Kimber Solana

St. Louis — The complaint filed against Delta Dental of Missouri by three Missouri dentists, including an ADA trustee, has been resolved.

The complaint had alleged that the nonprofit was operating under an improperly adopted set of bylaws and was refusing to conduct an annual meeting as required by state law. The settlement rectifies those practices.

They reached the settlement Dec. 17, 2014, less than a month after Dr. Mark Zust, ADA 6th District trustee, along with Drs. Matt Niewald and Douglas Wyckoff — all of whom are enrolled providers of Delta Dental of Missouri — initiated their lawsuit in the St. Louis County Circuit Court.

According to Dr. Zust, as part of the "mutually agreed upon settlement," Delta Dental of Missouri will proceed with the election of its directors by mail-in ballot, to take place in February. The results are to be announced at an annual meeting to be held Feb. 20 in Columbia, Missouri. The election of new directors will be based on the same candidates who were on the October/November ballot previously distributed by Delta Dental of Missouri.

In accordance with Missouri law, there is a provision for additional candidates by a petition process.

"We believe that this is significant, which will result in increased transparency in Delta's operation," Dr. Zust said.

Along with the scheduling of the annual meeting and the election of directors, Dr. Zust said the complaint and settlement has resulted in additional positive action with respect to the Delta Dental of Missouri's bylaws. For example, changes to Delta Dental's bylaws must be approved by member providers, and in the case of a mail-in vote, any member who asks will be provided with the names and contact information of all voting members.

Three dentists file complaint against Delta Dental of Missouri. Read more.

After settlement, Delta Dental elects petition candidates to its board. Read more.