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January 16, 2007

A Judgement Call

Some of the easiest money we make as therapists is the sale of gift certificates. It is especially easy if the recipient does not redeem the gift; then it is like found money. It is up to the discretion of the therapist how they want to handle such a situation. I prefer that my gift certificates not be transferable, but I allow this sometimes on a case by case basis. Often, I allow the gift purchaser to redeem the certificate if their recipient does not want it.

I had a unique case this past week where a client, who had been in the hospital, misplaced their gift in all the chaos and called six months after the gift expired wanting to redeem it. I recognized that this individual has problems and decided to soften my stance on expired certificates. I was confident that the client wanted this session because they called to confirm the directions to my office the day before the session.

The morning of their session, they left a message on my answering service cancelling their visit with me "because of an emergency doctor's appointment." They apologized and wanted me to call them back. Though I was disappointed by the run-around, I swallowed my irritation, again recognizing that this person has problems. I left a message to the effect that I hoped everything was alright and asked them to call me if they wanted to reschedule the appointment. I don't know if I will hear back from them.

What would you have done?

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Posted by linda at January 16, 2007 12:03 PM

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