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Dento-legal matters: what you need to know

2021 date to be confirmed, LONDON

Please note we are working on finding a new date for this event in 2021.

Please email to register your interest in this topic.




Your profession needs you

Are you a dentist interested in dento-legal matters or want to know more about being an expert witness? Are you looking for a new career direction in dentistry or eager to help fellow professionals? If you are keen to utilise a different part of your skill set or are just starting out in the dento-legal field then this event is for you.

Gain insight into this intellectually stimulating field from renowned dento-legal experts, barristers and solicitors. Explore the basics of expert report writing, gain tips on preparation for cross examination in court, experience a mock trial and more. 

Established experts can also benefit from this refresher day and gain 5 hours of enhanced CPD.


Learning objectives:

  • Gain insight into the work of a dental expert
  • Learn how to excel as an expert witness
  • Understand the process of a hearing
  • Know how to prepare for court appearances
  • Key learnings from recent legal cases.

How to book

​​**We are currently unable to accept payment by cheque and bookings by post. Please book online, by phone or email a completed booking form to**


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BDA members can book online
(login register - see top right of page)

By phone

020 7563 4590

By booking form

Print, complete then return a 

booking form

To book online: Login to the BDA website first. Then use the pink 'Register' button at the top right of this page.

If you have a GDC number you can use the online system. You do not need to be a BDA member.

If you do not already have a BDA website username and password, fill in this form and we'll set you up with a username and temporary password.

If booking online, please email with any dietary requirements.


​BDA Indemnity members*: £125 

BDA members: £150

​Non-members: £200


*BDA Indemnity members will need to call the events line to book or submit a booking form.

Discount vouchers will not be accepted for this event.

All costs includes refreshments, a standing buffet lunch and course documentation (where applicable). This event is exempt from VAT.


​09:30 Chair introduction, Len D'Cruz, Head of Indemnity, BDA

Why become an expert?

  • Key competencies required
  • The motivation for becoming an expert.

Sharon Caro, Dento-legal expert


Understand the role of the dental expert and how you can excel as an expert witness

  • The reality of writing reports
  • How to best support the person you represent
  • Essentials of managing meetings with barristers and other experts
  • Building up experience and a strong portfolio of work
  • Career and personal rewards and benefits of specialising as a dento-legal expert.

Hilary Firestone, Dento-legal expert

11:20 Morning break and refreshments

How to write expert reports for court and the GDC

  • What are the key case details to consider?
  • What are the essential elements to include in reports?
  • How to ensure your legal reports are watertight and ready for court
  • The pitfalls of expert report writing for
    a) Clinical negligence cases in a dental context
    b) GDC cases.

Tracy Sell-Peters, Solicitor, DWF Law

12:30 ​Lunch

Exploring cross examination in court

  • How to best prepare for court appearances and being in the witness box
  • Types of questioning you can expect
  • What you need to avoid
  • Achieving the best possible outcome.

Andrew Colman, Barrister, 2 Hare Court Chambers


Court room case study: Mock hearing

  • The dos and donts of a court room drama
  • Find out how you can best prepare for difficult court room situations.

Sarah Przybylska, Barrister, 2 Hare Court Chambers
Hilary Firestone, Dento-legal expert

​14:50 Afternoon break and refreshments

Staying informed - latest updates in the law

  • Key laws you need to understand
  • Recent legislative updates
  • Learnings from recent legal cases.

Marios Lambis, Barrister, 2 Hare Court Chambers


Panel session: Ask the experts

Your chance to participate in discussion with all speakers from the day.

Andrew Colman, Marios Lambis and Sarah Przybylska, Barristers, 2 Hare Court Chambers
Tracy Sell-Peters, Solicitor, DWF Law
Sharon Caro and Hilary Firestone, Dento-legal experts
Len D'Cruz, Head of Indemnity, BDA


Drinks reception

Networking reception with refreshments. Meet the BDA Indemnity team

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​17:05 Close of event


NB Speakers are subject to change and the speakers from 2 Hare Court Chambers who participate at the event may differ from the advertised programme.

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Sharon Caro

Dento-legal expert

Sharon Caro divides her time between her busy practice in Lytham St Annes, where she works with two associate dentists, a therapist, a hygienist and a visiting maxillofacial surgeon, and writing expert reports and attending GDC hearings. She is a seasoned expert witness having provided expert evidence for over 12 years for litigation and mediation, and in regulatory matters, and has given evidence at GDC PCC Hearings on over 70 occasions. Sharon seeks to present the opinion of a normal general practitioner working within general practice. She has also given lectures on recognising supervised neglect and the role of the expert witness.
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Andrew Colman

2 Hare Court Chambers

Over the last 15 years Andrew has specialised exclusively in professional regulation, with a particular focus on healthcare. Appearing initially on behalf of the General Medical Council (GMC), he progressed to defending dentists, doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals before their regulatory bodies. He also presents cases before the General Optical Council (GOC) and the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) and represents medical professionals at inquests. He works for all of the principal defence indemnity providers, both directly and through their external solicitors.

He is normally instructed in the more difficult, multi-factorial cases at Fitness to Practise hearings. He regularly appears in the High Court on statutory appeals and judicial reviews.

Andrew has spoken at Professional Discipline Conferences and seminars and designed and delivered training courses to regulators and to other advocates. He has written articles on assorted subjects concerning professional discipline.

"He combines a natural flair for advocacy with a fantastic ability to spot the overlooked killer detail." – Legal 500 2020

"He has a brilliant mind and a calm demeanour, and secures outstanding results in the most difficult cases. The apparent simplicity with which he destroys opponents never fails to impress." – Chambers UK 2020

"A master of detail. His submissions are works of genius" – Chambers UK 2017

"He's cerebral, bright on the law and academically astute" – Chambers UK 2017

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Len D'Cruz

GDP and Practice Owner, London and Head of Indemnity, BDA

Len is a general dental practitioner, running a seven surgery mixed NHS and private practice in North East London. He is an experienced vocational trainer for the London Deanery. He is Head of Indemnity at the BDA and lead lecturer for the MA in Dental Law and Ethics at the University of Bedfordshire. He is the author of two books and writes and lectures widely  on dento legal aspects of dentistry.
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Hilary Firestone

Dento-legal expert

Hilary qualified in 1979 and after several hospital oral surgery appointments, followed by a restorative post became a lecturer in restorative dentistry at The London hospital, where she stayed for three years. In 1985 Hilary married, went to live in Manchester and became a part-time GDP.

In 1987 she started a part-time Masters' Degree at Manchester University and almost at the same time returned to teaching at Manchester Dental hospital in the department of restorative dentistry. In the intervening years Hilary has amassed over 30 years of teaching experience, more than 30 years of general dental practice experience, one MSc, three children and a new facet to her career as an expert witness which started in 2002-3.

As an expert witness in general dental practice, Hilary writes reports on behalf of both claimants and defendants for clinical negligence claims, fitness to practice hearings and personal injury.

Hilary has appeared as an expert witness in the civil courts but primarily and frequently gives evidence under instructions for both defence (Dentist) and prosecution (GDC) at Fitness to practice hearings.

Over the years Hilary has given presentations to various postgraduate groups and lawyers as to the role of an expert witness in general dental practice.

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Marios Lambis

2 Hare Court Chambers

Marios has advised and represented clients in respect of professional regulation for all his career. He specialises in complex, lengthy and multi-factorial cases and was, for example, instructed to defend in what was (at the time) said to be the largest investigation the Care Quality Commission had conducted.

He has lectured for the General Medical Council and General Dental Council and provided advocacy training to various indemnifiers including to dentists and other professionals in respect of fitness to practice matters.

He has assisted regulators with their procedures and rules including the General Medical Council in devising a method by which it could protect documents to which it regarded public interest immunity attached when its rules did not provide for such a process. He was one of only two barristers (the other being a QC) to advise the precursor of the MPTS on the form and nature of its Fitness to Practice Rules.

He has been instructed in cases of the utmost gravity and public concern including those where novel and complex issues of law and procedure arose including preparing and presenting the case against the Team Leader & Social Worker in the 'Baby P' case.

"Very robust, a real fighter and great on his feet." Chambers UK 2020

"Reassuringly confident, with an excellent legal mind." Legal500 2020

"Confident in his presentation and very experienced in professional discipline cases'" Chambers UK 2019

"A charming, personable advocate who always meticulously prepares cases." – Chambers UK 2019

"Charming and persuasive in front of the disciplinary tribunals." – Legal 500 2019

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Sarah Przybylska


2 Hare Court Chambers

Sarah has been ranked by the professional directories as a leading barrister in this field since she was six years’ call. She has an extensive and varied practice in professional regulation, representing individuals from farriers to sea captains. She represents healthcare professionals who face proceedings brought by their regulators. She represents such clients on appeal and in related proceedings in the criminal and coroner’s courts. She also acts for a number of healthcare regulators and has considerable experience supervising and coordinating complex investigations (including a number of cases arising from the closure of the Winterbourne View Care Home). She has an excellent track record in drafting successful written representations to case examiners on discontinuance of charges.

Sarah has provided training to case examiners and panel members and regularly speaks to professional bodies, most recently the Dental Law and Ethics Forum.

"Ferociously intelligent and fearless. She provides sensible, pragmatic advice and is well-liked by corporate clients." – Chambers UK 2020

"Detail-oriented and has a wonderful manner with clients. Tenacious and firm in advocacy without alienating those who she is addressing." – Legal 500 2020

"The complete package: devastatingly efficient and effective." – Legal 500 2019

"Efficient, brave and committed to achieving the best outcome for her clients. A terrific advocate with a clear, commercial and user-friendly approach to advice. She possesses a talent well beyond her year of call." – Chambers UK 2019

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Tracy Sell-Peters

Solicitor, DWF Law

Tracy qualified as a solicitor in 1996, having been called to the Bar in Ontario, Canada, prior to moving to London. She undertook her training in Toronto, Canada.

Tracy heads up the healthcare litigation practice at DWF Law as well as leading the sector for the business internationally. She has 25 years of experience in all aspects of healthcare litigation, having conducted cases for medical defence organisations, insurers, the NHSLA, PCTs, private clients, regulators, royal medical colleges, faculties and other medical institutions.

Tracy has extensive experience in the area of regulatory law (including cases before most of the healthcare regulators), inquest law, medico-legal advisory work, dispute resolution and personal injury with cases including large numbers of complex and high-value clinical negligence claims spanning the medical specialities and including claims in relation to neurology, cerebral palsy, spinal and orthopaedic, plastic surgery, ophthalmology and paediatric.

Tracy has conducted large volumes of regulatory work, defending doctors, dentists, dental professionals and other healthcare practitioners whose registration is called into question by the General Medical Council (GMC), the General Dental Council (GDC) and other healthcare regulatory bodies (including the Nursing and Midwifery Council, General Optical Council, Health and Care Professions Council).

She has been involved in serious untoward incident inquiries, represented doctors at independent inquiries and advised in relation to numerous medico-legal issues including harassment, defamation, capacity, consent, confidentiality and the Data Protection Act. She has acted for doctors at employment tribunals and for healthcare professionals in injunction and judicial review proceedings and she has represented medical and dental professionals as an advocate at numerous complex inquests, including deaths in custody. Those inquests have often developed into both regulatory and civil proceedings.


5 hours enhanced CPD

The seminar meets the educational criteria set by the GDC for verifiable CPD and is certified by the British Dental Association. Development outcomes A, C and D apply.


British Dental Association, London

64 Wimpole Street




If you wish to stay overnight during the event please contact MICE Concierge our appointed hotel booking agency by email or call 01438 908770.

NB Discount vouchers will not be accepted for this event.

Full terms and conditions (including cancellation policy).