Align Technology faces class-action lawsuit

A complaint was filed May 10 against Align Technology, charging the company with implementing unfair and fraudulent requirements for the prescription of Invisalign through the company's proficiency requirements.

The lawsuit was filed by Christopher Leiszler, D.D.S., in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California on behalf of himself and "all others similarly situated," Align said in a press release. The complaint seeks a refund of the price paid to Align for Invisalign training.

In June 2009, Align launched an Invisalign proficiency program that required Invisalign-trained doctors to start a minimum of 10 cases per year to maintain their active provider status. The company last month rescinded that requirement after receiving thousands of phone calls and e-mails from customers unhappy with the new program. However, Invisalign-trained doctors are still required to complete a minimum of 10 Invisalign CE hours per year.

Dr. Leiszler, a general practice dentist, attended Invisalign training in 2008 and had started one Invisalign case since that time, according to his complaint. His Invisalign provider status was changed in January 2010 for failing to meet the company's proficiency requirements.

According to Align, doctors whose customer accounts were deactivated or changed to limited status for failing to meet the 2009 proficiency requirements can reactivate their account and start using Invisalign again at any time by completing a training course and thereafter meeting the annual 10 CE hour annual requirement.

Align said it has reviewed Dr. Leiszler's complaint and will "vigorously defend against the litigation."

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