Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Late fees for missed appointments

Have you ever seen the “A $20 fee will be charged for each missed appointment” sign in a doctor’s office?  If you’re like me, you probably wonder if the doctor has to pay you if the office cancels your appointment, if the office really has any right to charge you, and if they do try to charge you, whether or not you would ever agree to pay it.  In any event, the [non]billable hour has a post with an interesting twist on this idea:

A few weeks ago I started going to a new doctor, and was made to sign a document explaining their late fee policy. It was unique. If you miss a scheduled visit, you are charged a $20 fee. If you are late by more than 10 minutes, that qualifies as a missed session. But the doctor's office doesn't keep the money. All money from late fees is donated to the local children's hospital.

Certainly it would make it harder to argue with the policy knowing that the money was going to a worthwhile charity and not just becoming a revenue stream for the doctor’s office.


Note that the original story came from this post by Robert May

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