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Does Insurance Cover Therapy?

If you’re struggling with a life-changing challenge, therapy offers a very cost-effective solution that can help you better manage your life. Some therapists offer a variety of payment options that include credit cards, cash, or insurance. In California, therapists typically charge an hourly fee that ranges from $90-$125, although some therapists do charge more. If you are in a low-income bracket and don’t have insurance, ask your therapist if she or he provides a sliding-fee scale. The hourly sliding-fee scale ranges from $60-$90.

Before you start therapy, you and your therapist should discuss his or her payment policies and options.

Medical Insurance


If you have health insurance, it pays to be fully informed about what your insurance company does and does not cover.
Many insurance plans cover or reimburse for mental health care. Often, therapists will provide you with a "super bill" that you can submit to your insurance company for reimbursement, providing the treatment and provider meet your insurance company’s requirements. Some therapists will bill your insurance company directly.
It is your responsibility to make sure your therapy is covered. Here are a few tips for doing so:

1. Contact your insurance company or read your insurance plan to verify your insurance coverage. Get the name and title of the person with whom you speak.

2. Ask your insurance company if you need a referral from your primary care physician to work with a MFT. If you do, be sure you get a referral for therapy.

3. Ask your insurance company about what your policy will cover.

4. Find out from your insurance company how many visits are covered.

5. Confirm the amount of your deductible and co-pay.

6. Ask your insurance company if it requires the therapist to be part of a preferred provider network or if there are any limitations on who you choose to receive therapy from.

California Department of Insurance
Consumer contact within the State of California Department of Insurance.

Department of Managed Health Care