Copyright American Psychological Association. 2022

Legal and Regulatory Consultations

Although our staff attorneys do not give legal advice, the Office of Legal and Regulatory Affairs provides free consultations to APA members only. 

Our staff attorneys are well-versed in issues facing psychologists and are available to answer APA members’ questions on practice-legal issues. Contact us for guidance on questions such as:

  • Starting a new practice.

  • Audits by insurance companies.

  • Responding to subpoenas and other requests for patient information.

  • HIPAA and patient confidentiality.

  • Recordkeeping.

  • Reporting suspected abuse.

  • Dealing with dangerous patients.

  • Providing telehealth services.

  • Closing or selling your practice.

To request a consultation fill out the form below  or call (202) 336-5930.

Request a Legal Consultation

Practice-Related Legal Resources

Psychologists face a myriad of legal issues related to practice, so having quick access to information is necessary to make good decisions. 

What do you do when you receive a subpoena? When is it appropriate to release patient records to a third party? How do you respond to an audit by an insurer? What can you do if a patient owes you for unpaid sessions? 

These are just a few of the issues that APA Services, Inc. can help you evaluate. Visit the sections below for detailed information on various practice-related topics.

View this section for guidance related to audit requests, demands for payment, and challenges to billing practices

Insurance and Managed Care

EHR and Telepsychology

Learn about technology and its impact on practice.

HIPAA Compliance

See resources for compliance with key rules under HIPAA, including the Privacy Rule, Security Rule and Breach Notification Rule.

Private Practice Resource Collection

APA Private Practice Helpline

For APA Members & Affiliates

The Private Practice Helpline for APA members is an exclusive benefit to assist members seeking information regarding the business aspects of private practice. Read disclaimer.

Consultations will consist of individual 20-minute phone calls by appointment. Topics to be addressed include (but are not limited to): Practice setup, administrative structure, fee structure, specialty focus marketing, business decisions, and planning, ethics concerns, clinical staff, supervision/mentoring, and skill development.

No advice will be given for specific legal, risk management, or tax-related questions, other than to recommend consulting a professional who is licensed in that area.

All of our consulting calls are by appointment only. You can fill out our Private Practice Helpline form or call 1-855-682-8302 Monday – Friday 7 am – 7 pm CT and a representative will assist you or get you in touch with our consultants.

For providers of health or mental health services licensed by state or provincial psychology licensing boards.

Practice Update Newsletter

Access to consultation services from staff experts on issues impacting your work

Ethics Resources

Connect potential clients to your professional profile where they can learn about your areas of expertise, background, treatment options, office hours and more. Create or update your profile today!

Psychologist Locator

APA’s robust catalog of CE programming is designed to provide you with the most relevant, credible, and applicable information to impact your work.

Continuing Education

APA provides training, professional development presentations, and resources for members in private practice

Practice Training Courses

Connect with a thriving, diverse, global community of over 133,000 researchers, educators, clinicians, consultants, and students.

APA Member Directory

Save 20% annually with the preferred provider of  professional liability insurance for APA members.

American Professional Agency

Answers to questions such as starting a new practice, dealing with dangerous patients, HIPAA issues and more

Legal Issues

Your APA membership gives you access to consultants who can answer questions regarding the business aspects of private practice.

Click Here to Schedule Your Call Now!

CALL 1-855-682-8302

Our Helpline Consultants:  

The APA has partnered with The Practice Institute (TPI) to offer members expert advice from psychologists with decades of experience in private practice.

Frequently Asked Questions

Whom will I speak with? You will be speaking with one of the six TPI consultants who will be staffing the Helpline. The specific consultant will be selected to best address your specific question.

How will the appointment be scheduled? We will schedule the appointment via email. The Helpline consultant will offer you two times. Hopefully, you can make one of those work.

What if the offered appointment times don’t work with my schedule? 
We will do the best we can to accommodate your scheduling needs. However, this may mean waiting a few days or more if you have needs that limit your availability for a 20-minute call.

Can I call 24/7? All of our consulting calls are by appointment only. You can fill out our Private Practice Helpline form or call 1-855-682-8302 Monday – Friday 7 am – 7 pm CT and a representative will assist you or get you in touch with our consultants.

Is my information kept private and confidential? We will only release specific information about you as required by law. In order to help meet the needs of APA members in the future, we will be tabulating statistical data on the types of questions asked and the career stages of our callers. However, the data will be aggregated, such that no individual will be identified.

For answers to more commonly asked questions, read our full FAQs document.

What if I don’t have a private practice yet, but am looking to start one? That’s a perfect question to ask us. We can tell you what factors to consider as you look to make this important decision.

What if I want to report someone who I believe is doing business unethically in their private practice? This difficult situation is certainly something you can discuss during your consultation appointment.

Am I able to call in more than one time? Absolutely! You can call the Helpline more than once. We do not have a limit; however, we do not provide ongoing regular consultations.

How long will it take before I have my call with the consultant?: Within two business days of contacting the APA Private Practice Helpline we will reach out to you with two potential appointment times. The actual time between reaching out to us and having your call will depend on whether you can accept one of those appointments or whether we have more difficulty aligning schedules.

What is the length of the call? Twenty minutes. Please be prepared to succinctly outline your specific question so that we can have time to respond and discuss it as fully as possible in the available time.

Will the call be via Zoom or phone? We want you to be most comfortable with the mode of communication and will meet with you using phone or video conferencing technology. It is your choice. Just let us know when we are scheduling the appointment.

  • “How do I go about building a successful practice?” 
  • “I’m not good at public speaking, how can I market my practice?” 
  • “How do I start a practice?” 
  • “How do I go about finding an office?” 
  • “How do I know if I am ready to hire someone?” 
  • “How do I go about hiring another mental health professional?” 
  • “What forms do I need to get started?” 
  • “What things need to occur in order to start doing business?” 
  • “Will opening a practice help or hurt my student loan debt?”

The latest advocacy updates, reimbursement and licensing and regulatory guidance and other information to help navigate during the pandemic

Practice Resources

APA Member Testimonials

"[The APA Private Practice Helpline] is a much-needed resource and is very useful for the next generation of psychologists."

"My consultant was knowledgeable regarding my concern and personable as well. I was highly satisfied with his consultation and with the service."

"[The APA Private Practice Helpline] was worth the full price of my APA dues."

"I'm so glad APA is offering [the Private Practice Helpline] and it's free! Of course, I'm going to reach back out as much as I can."

The APA Private Practice Helpline offers checklists designed to help you organize and complete tasks related to running your business. 

Topics include: 

Checklists

By working with a dedicated coach, achieving compliance can be done quickly through just a few self-paced virtual meetings.

Compliancy Group

Shop, compare, and enroll in both employer group and individual health plans with just a few clicks.

Health Insurance Marketplace

Episodes cover a range of topics that affect practitioners, including the financial and legal aspects of running a business.

Podcast Series

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Click Here to Schedule Your Call Now!