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Office Policies

Fees, Office Policies and Procedures

1. Therapy sessions for individuals, couples, and families range from 50 minutes to 2 hours in length.

2. The fee for a 50 minute session is $200; for a 90 minute session $300; and for a 2 hours session $400. Fees are payable at the end of each session.

3. The fee for legal proceedings, court deposition, and testimony is $400 per hour. Charges will include travel and wait time. A retainer will be required in advance. There is also a charge, based on an hourly rate of $200, for review of court records and reports. These services and fees cannot be billed to your insurance company.

4. To cancel an appointment, call the office at least 24 hours prior to your appointment. If your appointment is on Monday, call by Friday to cancel. If appointments are not canceled with a 24-hour notice, the full fee will be charged. Your insurance can not be billed for missed appointments.

5. When you call the office, your call may be received by voice mail. Please leave your name, phone number, message and a range of times that you can be reached. Your call will be returned as soon as possible.

6. There is no charge for occasional, brief telephone calls made to or returned from the office. However, more lengthy telephone consultations will be charged at the rate of $50 for each 15 minutes.

7. If you have a crisis and you do not wish to wait for my return call, you may call the following 24-hour phone number or go the emergency room of the nearest hospital. Suicide and Crisis Center: 214-828-1000.

8. I accept checks, cash, or credit cards for payment of services.

Confidentiality

I am required to keep records of your treatment, such as the notes I take when we meet.

1. When I treat children under the age of 12, I must tell parents or guardians whatever they ask me. As children mature and are more able to understand and make decisions, they acquire legal rights. For those between the ages of 12 and 18, most of the details they tell me will be treated as confidential. However, parents or guardians have the right to general information about the progress of therapy. I also may need to disclose to parents or guardians information about other family members especially if their actions put them or others in danger.

2. In cases where I treat several family members, the situation for confidentiality can become more complicated. I may have different roles and duties toward various family members. At the beginning of treatment, we must have a clear understanding of the goals and purposes of therapy and my role. Then we can be clear about any boundaries or limits on confidentiality.

3. If I am doing martial therapy and you tell me something your spouse does not know, and not knowing this could harm him or her, I cannot promise to keep it confidential. I will work with you to decide on the best long-term solution to handle the situation.

4. If you and your spouse are involved in a court custody dispute, I need to know about it. The professional rules and practices for psychologists prevent me from doing both therapy and custody evaluations.

5. If you are working with me in couples therapy, you must agree at the start of treatment that if you eventually decide to divorce, you will not request my court testimony for either side.

6. I am involved in a case consultation group where I may sometimes consult with other professionals about your treatment. The members of my consultation group are also required by professional ethics to keep your information confidential. Also, when I am out of town or unavailable, another therapist will be available to assist my clients. I may need to give them information about my clients.

7. If you want me to send information about your therapy to another professional, you must sign a "release-of-records" form.

8. Any information that you share outside of therapy, willingly and publicly, will not be considered protected or confidential by a court.

9. Please be aware that email communication is not considered private and confidential.

Side Effects and Other Potential Unpleasantness

You should know that therapy is not always easy. You may find yourself having to discuss very personal information. You could find those conversations difficult and embarrassing, and you might be anxious during and after such conversations. As you learn more about yourself, you might encounter increased conflict with friends, co-workers, and family members. It is possible that you might become somewhat depressed. Therapy is intended to alleviate problems, but sometimes, especially at first, and as you get to the root of some things, you may feel emotional discomfort even more acutely than in the past. I may ask you to do some things that might, at first, make you feel awkward or uncomfortable. Sometimes therapy requires trying new ways of doing things. You will always be free to move at your own pace. I will challenge you and your old ways of thinking and doing things, but I cannot offer any promise about the results you will experience. Your outcome will depend on many things.

I am committed to serving the needs of my clients and I am also committed to running an efficient office. Balancing these needs is essential for consistently providing effective psychotherapeutic services for all clients. I appreciate your business and your cooperation in this process. Please let me know how I am doing in the process of meeting your needs. If you have any questions regarding this information or other concerns, please talk to me about it.

Complaints to my licensing board can be made to the Texas State Board of Marriage and Family Therapists, P.O. Box 141369, Austin, Texas 78714, or call 1-800-942-5540; or the Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists, 333 Guadalupe, Suite 2-450, Austin, Texas 78701, or call 1-800-821-3205.

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