Some of the benefits to paying out-of-pocket for services are:
Freedom to choose your own services
Insurance companies often limit the number of therapy sessions that are covered and can even limit the type of therapy you receive. An important part of therapy is having a therapist who you can build a comfortable and trusting relationship with, which you may not be able to find with your insurance company’s network of providers. Paying for services yourself allows you to choose the therapist that you feel is the best fit for you, as well as the type of treatment and duration that best fits your needs. Many insurance companies also do not cover marriage counseling because it is not an individual medical problem. Paying out-of-pocket ensures that you get the services you need with the right therapist.
Paying out-of-pocket allows for more privacy
Therapy often involves very personal and private information that you may or may not want shared with others. If an insurance company is paying for services, they legally have access to information, including a mental health diagnosis, that will become a permanent part of your health record. Many clients choose to pay out-of-pocket to keep their information private rather than have it recorded in their permanent record.
It may or may not save you money to use insurance
Many insurance policies today have a high deductible, meaning you may have to pay full price for many sessions before coverage would begin. Many providers who network with insurance companies also charge a higher rate, meaning that the total costs could even be more with your insurance than they would be paying out-of-pocket with a therapist with lower fees. (And you may still be able to submit receipts to your insurance to go towards your deductible and get reimbursed in the future.)
You may not have a “diagnosis”
In order to provide coverage for therapy services, insurance companies require that the services be medically necessary, meaning a mental health diagnosis must be given. If you are seeking couples therapy or family treatment, the problem is most often relational and due to issues with communication or connection, rather than an individual mental health problem that needs a diagnosis. Many people seek therapy as a preventative measure or to get extra support or learn new skills to improve their relationships and may not qualify for a mental health diagnosis. Paying out-of-pocket allows you to reap the benefits of counseling no matter what your circumstance or concerns are.
Even with paying out-of-pocket at the time of service, you may still be able to get reimbursed for some of your costs through your insurance! Upon request, I can provide you with a receipt to submit to your insurance provider to seek reimbursement through your out-of-network coverage.
Contact me today with any questions about payment and fees or to schedule your first appointment.