Dentist claims contract with medical waste company not valid

Kelly Holleran Feb. 27, 2012, 3:16pm


A dentist has filed suit against a waste company, alleging he should be allowed to terminate the company's services if he chooses to do so.

The company is fighting back, saying the dentist signed a contract that would force him to pay money if he decides to terminate its services.

Beaumont dentist David M. Caldwell claims defendant Stericycle has been providing his medical waste pickup services at David M. Caldwell DDS & Associates for more than 10 years. Caldwell, however, decided he no longer wanted to utilize Stericycle, according to the complaint filed Feb. 15 in Jefferson County District Court.

When Caldwell attempted to terminate Stericycle's services, however, Stericycle threatened to enforce a Steri-Safe Service Agreement which Caldwell had allegedly signed. The agreement imposes a significant monetary penalty should Caldwell decide to end his services, the suit states.

When Caldwell investigated the matter, he discovered that one of his employees had perhaps signed the contract on Dec. 12, 2010, the complaint says. However, this employee did not have the authority to sign such documents without Caldwell's permission, he claims.

In his complaint, Caldwell is seeking a declaration that he does not have to abide by the contract because a person of authority did not sign it. He also seeks costs, attorney's fees and other relief the court deems just.

Benjamin T. Major of Germer Gertz in Beaumont will be representing him.

Judge Bob Wortham, 58th District Court, has been assigned to the case.

Case No. A191-966

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