Some marriage mates consider couples counseling but eventually shy away from the service because they are not sure how they will pay for it. Other couples are unsure if couples counseling is covered by their insurance. In this article, we will look at the typical cost of couples counseling, evaluate the pros and cons of free couples counseling, and discuss how your health insurance fits into the entire process.
How Much Should You Pay For Couples Counseling?
Couples counseling usually costs the same as individual therapy. However, there are therapists who charge a higher fee when working with couples. One reason for this is the therapist may want compensation for the time and energy needed to address the needs of a second person in each session. It is important to remember that there are no laws that dictate the fees a therapist can charge for his or her services.
Couples counseling may range from $35 to $300 per therapy hour. There are a number of factors that may influence price. Some of these factors include:
- How the sessions are delivered (Online or In-person)
- The qualifications the therapist has
- How experienced and effective the therapist is
- Where the therapist is located
Couples counseling that is offered online may attract a fee of $35 to $50 per session. Face-to-face sessions are significantly more expensive and may range from as low as $50 to as high as $300 per hour. Therapists who have received specialized training in couples counseling tend to charge higher prices for their services. Experienced therapists who have good reviews from clients are also usually more expensive than newly established counselors.
Interestingly, the fee you pay for couples counseling may vary depending on where your therapist’s office is located. Therapists in big cities tend to charge a higher fee for couples counseling because their expenses (such as rent, utilities, marketing, etc.) tend to be greater than therapists in rural areas. In the San Francisco Bay Area, it is not uncommon to see couples counseling fees of $300 per hour.
The Advantages and Disadvantages of Free Couples Counseling
If you live in an area where couples counseling fees are high, you may be attracted to services that offer free couples counseling. Of course, the biggest advantage of these services is that you will not have to pay for any of your couples counseling sessions. These free services may be associated with medical or religious organizations.
There are two potential disadvantages to keep in mind if you are considering a service that offers free couples counseling. The first is that your counselor may not have received the same level of specialized training as a licensed marriage and family therapist (LMFT). This means your couples counseling sessions may not be as effective as they could be with a more qualified counselor. The second point to remember is that even if you manage to get a qualified counselor who offers free counseling sessions, the fact that he or she is not being paid may negatively impact the amount of time and effort he or she invests with you and your partner.
If you cannot afford couples counseling, it may help if you speak with the therapist you and your partner would like to work with. Some therapists may offer sliding scale fees that are a better fit for your budget. Couples counseling is similar to other services in that you will likely get what you pay for. For more information on this topic, please check this link: https://www.regain.us/advice/marriage/free-marriage-counseling-you-get-what-you-pay-for/
Does Your Health Insurance Cover Couples Counseling?
The short answer is “maybe.” While most insurance plans do not currently cover couples counseling, an increasing number of insurance providers are choosing to add the service as a part of their coverage. Some insurance plans may cover couples counseling sessions if one or both partners have been diagnosed with a mental health issue. However, these sessions are typically used to address the mental health issue rather than improving your relationship with each other.
If you and your partner have good mental health, your health insurance may not cover couples counseling. To avoid any expensive misunderstandings, it is recommended that you speak with your insurance provider to see what options are available to you.