When to Write-Off a Claim


A desk with computer, phone, notebook, pens, and coffee, and a banner with the text "Write Offs"

Writing off claims can be one of the hardest things that you do in private practice. You have worked hard for that money and you want to make sure that you are capturing every dollar that you can. However there are situations in which you need to write off claims and we want to help you evaluate when to write off claims and when to pursue payment.


One of the ways to know when to write off a claim is when a claim has gone past timely filing and it has not been submitted to the insurance company already. If you are using TherapyNotes, you know that you will need to complete a progress note before submitting a claim to insurance. We know that life happens and you are not always able to complete your notes on time. If that happens and a claim goes past timely filing, you will likely need to write those claims off. Feel free to see our other blogs on how to effectively get more done if you have trouble completing your notes on time.


If you have submitted your claim within timely filing and the claim is denied for timely filing then you will need to appeal the claim with the insurance company and see if you can recoup the payment. Our team helps with this process all the time and we are ready and willing to help recoup any claims that you are having a hard time with.


The second way to know when a claim needs to be written off is when the patient has a carve out plan that doesn’t cover mental health benefits. A carve out plan is when a primary insurance company subcontracts the insurance benefits of a patient to another insurance company. Without an eligibility and benefits check, the claim will likely be denied or the therapist will not know if they are in network with the carve out company. Oftentimes, if the therapist is not in network with the carve out company, then the claim will not be covered and will need to be written off.


This does not mean that you cannot collect from your client. If a claim denies due to network coverage then you might still be able to get paid from the client themselves, but that is a conversation that you can have with your client if the time comes.


The last way to know when a claim needs to be written off is if the claim is older than 1 year old and has either not been submitted or not been followed up on. We know that you are busy running your practice and sometimes the last thing that gets attention is that aging report with all of your old claims. Oftentimes, this is one of the first things to fall by the wayside when your schedule fills up. However, if claims are not followed up on and issues are not caught in a timely manner then you will likely run into significant issues with the insurance company and will need to write off the claims with the insurance company.


Our goal is to help you capture as much revenue as possible and we work diligently to follow up on those old and pesky claims. If you find that you are writing off more than 25% of your aging every year or if you have questions about your old claims, feel free to reach out to us and a member of our team would be happy to explain how we can help you and your practice.


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