A lawsuit filed against Smiles Dental in February has been dismissed.
The complaint — filed by 53-year-old Michael Querubin in Douglas County Circuit Court — alleged Dr. Quinn Martin, a dentist at Smiles at the time, broke his bridge, teeth and jaw.
The dismissal was granted on July 10 by Douglas County Circuit Court Judge Frances Burge after Martin’s lawyer made a motion to dismiss the case on April 16 on the basis that the complaint was filed after the time allowed within state statute. According to Oregon law, any attempt to recover damages from medical injuries has to be filed within two years.
The alleged negligence took place on Feb. 2, 2016, and a complaint wasn’t filed until Feb. 5, 2018.
In a letter postmarked on April 28, Querubin, an inmate at Two Rivers Correctional Institution, said he was having difficulty finding another lawyer after his attorney, Nancy Howe, passed away.
Querubin asked the court to take his suffering into consideration and requested an extension so he could find a lawyer.
He also said the motion to dismiss was illegitimate.
“The time parameters were all met and the conclusion of the motion to dismiss because the action is time barred is illegitimate,” Querubin wrote.
Casey Murdock, Martin’s attorney, responded to the letter on May 3 by saying Howe’s passing was unfortunate and Querubin’s incarceration was disadvantageous, but neither impacted Querubin’s filing within the statute of limitations.
“(Martin) is not arguing that service was not accomplished in a certain time, which would be a curable defect,” Murdock wrote. “(Martin) is arguing that the initial Complaint (sic) was not filed within the time allowed by statute.”
On June 21, Murdock submitted a certificate of readiness to the court stating he had served a copy of the order and received no objection.
Martin told The News-Review he felt cheated when the lawsuit was first filed because he couldn’t comment due to patient confidentiality.
Now, he said he’s happy that the case was dismissed.
“Due to patient confidentiality I can’t really comment on it other than I’m pleased with the outcome,” Martin said Tuesday.
Querubin is serving a 68-month sentence after violating his parole earlier this year by smoking marijuana.
He was originally sentenced to 60 days in jail and five years of probation after he was convicted of second-degree assault in 2015 for hitting his neighbor in the face with a staff.