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Selling a dental practice
14 August, 2023

Selling a Dental Practice: How to Prepare Your Dental Practice for Sale


As a dental practice owner, there comes a time when you may be contemplating the next step in your professional journey. Whether it’s retirement, a career change, or a desire to pursue other ventures, the decision to sell your dental practice is a significant one.


When selling a dental practice, it is important to maximize your practice value prior to negotiating with prospective buyers. We also recommend planning for the dental transition process to make sure it’s as smooth as possible. In this blog post, we’ll explore the steps required to prepare your dental practice for sale.


Assessing Your Practice’s Financial Health

Before selling your dental practice, it is essential to evaluate its current financial health. Partnering with a Dental CPA can provide you with valuable insights into the financial performance of your practice. A Dental CPA possesses specialized knowledge of the dental industry and can help you understand the key financial metrics that potential buyers will consider.


Prospective buyers will look at revenue, profitability, patient base, location, and market trends. By getting a comprehensive business valuation done, you can identify ways to improve your dental practice value. For example, you might want to increase your patient retention rates or average customer value – as these are key factors that influence buyer interest and enhance your practice value.

Preparing Your Dental Practice for Transition

Once you have a clear understanding of your practice’s financial standing, it’s time to develop a detailed dental practice transition plan. Your transition plan should address various aspects of the dental practice transition process, including the timeline, legal considerations, staff responsibilities, handover of patient records, seller hand-off, and systems and processes.


Communicating the dental transition to your staff is crucial for a smooth handover and helps to minimize conflict. Your team has likely played a pivotal role in the success of your practice, and transparency is key to maintaining their trust during this period of change. 

Let them know about your decision well in advance, and consider involving them in the dental practice transition planning process. This will give them time to prepare and adapt to the new ownership.


Patients also need to be informed about the upcoming changes. Assure them that their dental health will remain a priority and that they will continue to receive the same level of care they’ve come to expect from your practice. Planning out a communication strategy can prevent any unnecessary anxiety and minimize the risk of losing existing patients.


Ensuring a smooth handover of patient records and practice management systems is crucial to maintaining continuity of care. By working closely with the new owner to facilitate the transfer of patient information, you can make the dental practice transition process smooth for everyone involved.


Managing Legal and Regulatory Considerations

Dental practice transitions are subject to various legal and regulatory requirements, which may vary depending on your practice location and specific circumstances. Some common considerations include:


  • Business Structure: It’s important to determine the most suitable business structure for the sale, such as selling the assets of the practice or transferring ownership of the entity itself.
  • Contracts and Agreements: Review existing contracts, leases, and agreements to ensure there are no restrictions or limitations on selling the practice. Negotiate necessary approvals or amendments if required.
  • Licensing and Permits: Ensure that all required licenses and permits are up-to-date and transferable to the new owner. Compliance with state dental board regulations is critical during this process.
  • Patient Privacy and Records: Comply with patient privacy laws (HIPAA) when transferring patient records and sensitive information to the new owner.
  • Employment and Labor Laws: Address any employment-related legal considerations, including employee contracts, benefits, and potential severance arrangements.


Financial and Tax Implications

Navigating the legal intricacies of selling a dental practice requires the expertise of professionals who specialize in dental practice transitions. Engaging a Dental CPA and specialized attorney can provide you with valuable guidance throughout the process. They can draft or review business valuations, legal documents, advise on regulatory compliance, and can address any legal or tax concerns that may arise.


  • Addressing Potential Legal Challenges


Despite careful planning, legal challenges may arise during a dental practice transition. An experienced attorney can help you identify potential legal risks and implement strategies to mitigate them. This significantly reduces the likelihood of legal disputes that may hinder the sale process.


  • Financial Implications


Understanding the financial implications of selling your dental practice is essential. A successful practice transition involves a comprehensive financial analysis to assess the potential gains and losses associated with the sale.


  • Analyzing Financial Implications


A thorough financial analysis will provide insight into the expected proceeds from the sale, taking into account factors such as outstanding debts, accounts receivable, and practice valuation. Understanding the financial implications will help you make informed decisions and set realistic expectations.


  • Considering Tax Implications


The sale of a dental practice can have significant tax implications. Working with an accountant or financial advisor experienced in dental practice transitions is essential. A Dental CPA can help identify the most tax-effective way to structure the sale of your dental practice to mitigate unnecessary taxes.



Preparing your dental practice for sale involves more than just assessing its financial health and developing a transition plan. It requires a comprehensive understanding of legal and regulatory considerations, as well as careful analysis of the financial and tax implications. 


Consulting with legal, financial, and tax experts who specialize in dental practice transitions helps ensure compliance, mitigate potential risks, and achieve a successful sale. Thorough preparation and expert guidance will set the stage for a smooth and rewarding dental practice transition. 


If you want to know more about selling a dental practice, book a call with our team of Dental CPAs so we can assist you in securing a prosperous future.


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Note: The material and contents provided in this article are informative in nature only. It is not intended to be advice and you should not act specifically on the basis of this information alone. If expert assistance is required, professional advice should be obtained.

Ed Gabriel, CPA is President of DrillDown Solution and a graduate of Brigham Young University. His clients benefit from over 40 years of experience in maximizing profits, minimizing taxes and putting them in the best financial position possible.