MISHAWAKA — More people are learning they are out of luck and maybe out of money after using AllCare Dental and Dentures. The company abruptly closed its doors Monday, citing financial problems.
Now, many patients who paid for treatment upfront are worried they could be without a dentist and out of that money, in many cases, thousands of dollars. In some cases, patients don't even have their teeth and don't know how they'll be able to pay someone else to finish their dentures.
"I can't even begin to believe it, I feel totally helpless," former patient Lisa Aranowski said as she stood in front of the AllCare facility in Mishawaka Tuesday afternoon. "It's fully paid for; everything is paid for."
Aranowski paid $2,200 in cash upfront to get her dentures done at AllCare. Her bottom teeth have already been pulled and even though she's wearing temporary dentures, she's due for her permanent set.
"Now I have no recourse. I don't know what I'm going to do. I can't afford to pay for something I've already paid for," Aranowski said.
Her frustrations are shared by many others.
"(I paid) about $5,000 and I paid it all upfront because they give you their discount if you pay it all upfront, and it was just the cheapest way to go," AllCare patient Wendy Ward said.
On Tuesday, patients were still learning the news of the closure. Ellen Brewer stopped by to get her dentures fixed. She had paid to get an extended warranty.
"My front tooth broke out trying to eat a dried apricot," Brewer said, "They're supposed to be guaranteed for five years. I've only had them for not quite two."
The Better Business Bureau is asking to hear from AllCare patients. The agency also sent out an alert advising patients to call their banks to stop any additional payments to AllCare. The BBB also wants the complaints to send them to the Indiana attorney general.
AllCare has had trouble in the past. Two years ago, in Pennsylvania, the company had to pay a consumer settlement after the attorney general went after AllCare Dental there.