Dental Service Organization


A “DSO” is a Dental Service Organization, or Dental Support Organization, that provides independent business support and management for dental practices in a non-clinical manner. The creation of DSOs has allowed dentists to maximize their practice from a clinical perspective while relying on the DSO to handle the “business side” of their operations through professional office management. The services typically provided by a DSO entail billing, collecting, bookkeeping, advertising, marketing, accounting, human resources, and staffing, to name a few.

What are the Objectives of a Dental Service Organization?

Dental Service Organizations support dentists and their practices. The primary objective of a DSO is to help the dentist maintain or improve their practice quality, efficiency, profitability, and patient experience. DSOs provide various services that make it easier for dentists to manage day-to-day operations, including access to capital for practice expansion, technology support, marketing resources, and more.

The administrative and operational tasks of running a dental practice can be time-consuming. DSOs provide dentists with the support they need to focus on patient care and enhance the overall quality of their practices. Partnering with DSOs helps dentists to streamline their practice and maximize the efficiency of their operations. With access to advanced technology, DSOs can offer dentists the support they need for their practice. They can help streamline operations and reduce overhead costs.

Why Should You Work With a Dental Service Organization?

Though several dental schools offer business courses and training, handling the business side of dental practice requires more than just education and experience. The lack of business and administrative knowledge can be a significant hurdle for dentists. The delegation of tasks also contributes to a dentist’s success. You can work for a skilled assistant to manage business operations. You can entrust them with various tasks over time so that you may concentrate on the clinical practice.

Dental Support Organizations provide the same solution. The experts of DSOs support staff, management teams, and other resources, enabling dentists to optimize their practice. It increases your ROI and helps you to focus on clinical excellence. Partnering with a DSO also enables you to treat more patients, manage operations smoothly and develop your practice quickly.

What are The Benefits of Working With a Dental Service Organization?

Partnering with DSOs offers various advantages to dentists. Here is a brief overview of the benefits.

  • The equipment for the dental practice is expensive. Upgrading to advanced tools and technologies to improve patients’ oral health is hard for a dentist. A DSO gives you access to capital and other resources needed to upgrade equipment and technology. This helps you stay up-to-date in the ever-changing dental industry, giving you a competitive edge.
  • DSOs also offer expertise and guidance to help you run your practice more efficiently. Their team of experts provides critical business management advice and marketing support to help your practice succeed.
  • Most DSOs conduct seminars and training to help dentists become better clinicians and businesspeople. They invite dental professionals to share their expertise and knowledge on the latest dental techniques, industry trends, and best practices for managing a successful practice. You can better serve your patients and grow your practice by updating your knowledge.
  • Maintaining tax reports, accounting records, and billing practices is crucial for private practice dentists. However, many dentists lack the time and resources to properly manage such office work. They need a reliable and cost-effective accounting solution. DSOs offer efficient back-office services to help dentists manage their finances, such as payroll processing, accounts receivable, accounts payable, tax planning, and compliance.
  • Hiring staff and managing personnel is another challenging task for most dentists. DSOs provide excellent recruitment and outsourcing solutions to help dentists hire the right staff, manage their workforce, and stay up to date on the latest labor laws.

Limitations of DSO and Their Solution

Several state dental associations have attempted to introduce legislation to restrict DSOs from providing services to dental practices. The main reason has been that they have felt that DSOs have overstepped the line between the arms-length provision of bona fide management services and ownership. Because most states prohibit non-dentists from owning dental practices and require licensed dentists to own dental practices, state dental associations have attempted to re-establish the line to protect the integrity of the law.

As a result, it has become imperative for DSOs to hire legal counsel experienced with DSO transactions to ensure compliance with the law and to prevent the DSOs from overstepping the line. In addition, it has become imperative for dental practice sellers who are transacting with DSOs to hire experienced legal counsel with knowledge of DSO structures.

Cohen Law Firm, PLLC has transacted hundreds of DSO purchases and sales and has many relationships in the DSO industry. Cohen Law Firm, PLLC knows the pitfalls of DSO transactions and can make the process cost-effective. They don’t have to bill the client to learn how the deal works, and they operate with maximum efficiency.


Dr. Dan Hoang


I am so glad I had David Cohen as my attorney for all my documents review during my recent practice transition. He was very quick and responsive yet detailed oriented and honest. He worked to protect what is most important to me that I was not even aware and also worked out win win for both buyer and seller. Thank you so much David!

Dr. Dan Hoang

Devin Gneiting

dental service organization

I recently sold 2 dental offices with David and had a great experience. David and his team were very quick and professional through the entire process. They were able to give great counsel and try to find a way to make the deal happen. Thank you

Devin Gneiting


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