Ariel Axelrod, LMHC

No Surprises Act Notice

What is the "No Surprises Act"?

Beginning January 1, 2022, psychologists and other health care providers will be required by law to give uninsured and self-pay patients a good faith estimate of costs for services that they offer, when scheduling care or when the patient requests an estimate.

This new requirement was finalized in regulations issued October 7, 2021. The regulations implement part of the “No Surprises Act,” enacted in December 2020 as part of a broad package of COVID- and spending-related legislation. The act aims to reduce the likelihood that patients may receive a “surprise” medical bill by requiring that providers inform patients of an expected charge for a service before the service is provided. The government will also soon issue regulations requiring psychologists to give good faith estimates to commercial or government insurers, when the patient has insurance and plans to use it.

What providers and what services are subject to this rule?

“Provider” is defined broadly to include any health care provider who is acting within the scope of the provider’s license or certification under applicable state law. Psychologists meet that definition.

The definition of “items and services” for which the good faith estimate must be provided is also broadly defined to encompass “all encounters, procedures, medical tests, … provided or assessed in connection with the provision of health care.” Services related to mental health substance use disorders are specifically included.

What is the good faith estimate based on?

The good faith estimate is a notification of expected charges for a scheduled or requested service (or item). The “expected charge” for an item or service is either: (a) the cash pay rate or rate established by a provider for an uninsured (or self-pay) patient, reflecting any discounts for such individuals; or (b) the amount the provider would expect to charge if the provider intended to bill a health care plan directly for such item or service.

Where can I find more information on the No Surprises Act

You can read more about the No Surprises Act at: