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Showing posts from January, 2018

Obtaining Certification

Be sure to check your scope of practice, granted by your license, against the rules and regulations of the State Department of Health in particular the Substance Abuse division. In Wyoming, private practices as well as agencies need a Substance Abuse certification issued by the state in order to actively treatment substance abuse disorders. In some states, if your practice has a national accreditation such as CARF or JCAHO, state certification is not also required. Professional licenses that may require additional agency certification in the private sector are

Licensed Addiction Therapist (LAT)Certified Addiction Practitioner (CAP)Certified Addiction Practitioner Assistant (CAPA)
Substance abuse certification is a process that often includes an application that focuses on your  understanding of the following areas of practice

Adherence to state standards of careDocumentation Treatment plan requirementsHIPAA complianceLevels of careAssessmentProgramming requirements including frequencyCl…

State Rules and Regulations

The mental health licensing board in each state not only oversees the professional and ethical expectations of counselors but it typically outlines which professional licenses can and cannot own own private practices. For instance in the State of Wyoming, mental health licenses that require temporary or ongoing supervision are not allowed to own a private practice. This includes

Certified Social WorkersProvisionally Licensed Clinical Social Workers, Professional Counselors and Marriage and Family TherapistsCertified Mental Health Worker Clinicians that have full licenses (LCSW, LMFT or LPC) typically have fewer restrictions in owning a private practice. If you are uncertain if you can own a private practice, review the rules and statutes posted by the mental health licensing board in your state. Call or email the board directly with any questions not outlined within the state statutes.

Business Licenses

It is important to understand and adhere to the regulations of the Federal Government, State and City as you begin your practice. Most cities require a license to open a new business. The licensing process often include inspections, fees and acknowledgement of the rules and regulations for the city and state. Business licenses expire; so if your area requires one, be sure to plan accordingly for its renewal. In Cheyenne, Wyoming, clinicians do not need a business license to begin a mental health private but each city is different. The establishments below are helpful in researching requirements in your city to establish the new business.

Office of the Secretary of StateCity Clerk DepartmentRegional Branch of the Small Business AdministrationChamber of Commerce

Accountants, lawyers and financial advisors, Oh My!

It is important to seek advise from professionals before you formally establish your business. There are various types of business structures, accounting processes, tax elections and retirement planning techniques. It is easiest to formulate the business correctly from the beginning.


An attorney knowledgeable about the formation of businesses can assist you deciding the structure of your practice.  Each business structure has a different set of legal and tax considerations. Common forms of businesses include:

sole proprietorshippartnerhsipcorporationS corpC corpLimited Liability Company (LLC) An attorney can also assist you in creating various documents such as Articles of Incorporation, Articles of Organization, Buy/Sell agreements and By-Laws some of which will be required by the Secretary of State when you file for the initial business entity. Different forms of businesses also have varying requirements for members, meeting minutes and shareholders. Attorneys can assist you …

Surviving the cash flow challenge

As you begin setting up your private practice, it is important to remain realistic about the time it takes to become fully operational. Typically new practitioners will need  6 months to 2 years to establish their own practice. The difference in set up time will vary with how many referral sources you acquire and how much marketing is completed.  Here are three basic rules to help you get started.

Rule #1: Don't quit your day job
Start seeing private clients after hours from your current job. If there is a non-compete contract in place at your agency, try to negotiate different terms possibly by seeing clientele that varies in diagnosis from clients served in your current agency. You may need to consult an attorney if you cannot negotiate new terms to the non-compete agreement. Many states will only enforce trademark or proprietary information sharing and not actual work restrictions. Meeting with a few clients a week in the beginning will allow you to sample private practice and …

Keys to Starting your Private Practice

If you have ever dreamed of starting your own successful mental health practice, you are not alone. Many clinicians have taken the leap and started seeing private clients with varying degrees of success.  This begs the question:

How can I succeed in a new private practice?
Equality Connections in Cheyenne, Wyoming helps clinicians of many experience levels realize this dream and we have found some key areas that clinicians need to consider when they start a new practice.
Survive the cash flow challengeAccountants, lawyers and financial advisors, Oh My!Business licensesState rules and regulationsObtaining certification Choosing office spaceBusiness insurance Getting your name into the communityLetting people know you are taking new referralsScheduling clientsBilling considerationsOngoing advertising for small practicesState tax paymentsFederal tax paymentRetaining clients Over the next several blog entries, I will be giving you valuable information about the above categories as you star…