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6 Best Credit Card Processing for Therapists in 2024

Ivana Shteriova Ivana ShteriovaFinance Specialist April 29, 2024
April 29, 2024
Every good therapist knows that client comfort goes beyond the therapy session. The same principle applies to collecting payments, too. By offering a simple invoicing process and multiple ways for clients to pay, you can set yourself apart from the competition.

Unfortunately, not every credit card processor offers the level of service you need. Some accept very few payment methods, while others don’t offer HIPAA-compliant software for managing your practice’s finances. Many companies also impose lengthy contracts and early termination fees, making it easy to end up stuck with a provider that isn’t meeting your expectations.

After researching dozens of credit card processors, I’ve found the most affordable and reliable options with great features for therapists. Most therapy practices will benefit from Leaders Merchant Services’s (LMS) custom pricing and appointment scheduling integration. You can even collect payments through subscriptions or alternative methods like payment links, which offer your patients even more ways to pay.

Continue reading to see what other HIPAA-compliant payment solutions I recommend.

Short on Time? These Are the Best Credit Card Processors for Therapists in 2024

  1. Expert’s Choice
    LMS_Monogram Leaders Merchant Services
    Leaders Merchant Services is a popular choice with our readers
    Custom plans, low transaction fees and appointment scheduling integration for therapists.
  2. Paysafe Lockup Off-Black RGB Paysafe Full patient management system with online payment acceptance and advanced invoicing.
  3. staxx logo Stax The lowest transaction fees for high-volume practices and feature-rich software.

What We Look For in the Best Credit Card Processing for Therapists

Though every therapy practice is unique, there are some common payment processing features that almost any in-person or virtual practice will benefit from. Here are the therapist-friendly features I made sure every processor on my list offers:
  • HIPAA compliance. If you want to use any built-in software or software integrations, you’ll need to keep an eye out for HIPAA compliance. Every payment processor on this list is either HIPAA compliant itself or integrates with third-party software that is.
  • Various payment methods. While credit cards are still a popular payment method, they’re not everyone’s preferred way to pay. Offering a variety of payment methods will make it easier for your clients to pay your invoices on time.
  • E-commerce integrations. E-commerce integrations allow your clients to schedule and pay for therapy sessions online. This means you can spend more time supporting your clients and less time on administrative tasks.
  • Invoicing. Invoicing software that allows partial payments or custom payment plans will make your services accessible to clients who can’t pay upfront or all at once. Every credit card processor on this list either integrates with third-party invoicing software or offers one or more virtual terminals with invoicing functionality built-in.

A Note on HIPAA Compliance

Credit card processing itself is not considered a HIPAA-covered activity because you’re not storing any health-related information in your merchant account. However, if your payment processor offers built-in software solutions to help you manage invoices, bookings, health records, or any other aspect of your practice, then this needs to be HIPAA-compliant.

Similarly, any third-party software you integrate with your merchant account needs to be HIPAA compliant if it can access personal health information (PHI). This, unfortunately, limits what integrations you can use with your payment processor.

Leaders Merchant Services (LMS) biggest benefit is that you can tailor its custom pricing structure to suit your business’s needs. You’re encouraged to negotiate an interchange-plus pricing structure that works for your practice. Best of all, you can expect relatively low monthly fees starting at $9.00 and per-transaction fees starting at ~2% + 0¢.

LMS itself isn’t HIPAA-certified but integrates with software that is. For an extra fee, you can use Clover’s HIPAA-compliant software to schedule appointments, manage client data, and more. Clover’s point-of-sale (POS) system can seamlessly integrate with any existing Electronic Medical Records (EMR) software. Depending on your plan, you may get one free Clover POS device, meaning you’d only have to pay for its HIPAA-compliant software.

Every LMS merchant also gets access to the iAccess business portal. This business management tool allows you to see financial analytics, explore industry trends, and respond to online reviews.

Features and Benefits

  • Quick setup. It takes less than 5 minutes to apply for an LMS merchant account, and most accounts receive approval within 2 business days. Once approved, you can start accepting payments the next business day.
  • 24/7 fraud and chargeback management team. Whether you operate within standard business hours or offer out-of-hours appointments and therapeutic support, LMS will still be available to help resolve any issues if something goes wrong. The processor has a dedicated fraud protection department that provides rapid problem resolution.
  • Cash advances. These collateral-free loans are a flexible financing option that’s ideal if you’re a new therapy practice or need some extra capital to expand your business. You can simply repay the loan through a small commission on your future sales.
  • Variety of payment methods. On top of the standard debit/credit card payments and ACH transfers, you can also accept bank transfers, digital wallets, and check payments if you purchase the mini check reader from LMS.
Read our expert Leaders Merchant Services review for more details.

Integrates with HIPAA-compliant software
Third-party HIPAA-compliant software solutions
  • Authorize.Net payment gateway
  • Accounting integrations
  • Clover POS software (optional)
Security features
  • PCI compliant
  • Tokenization and end-to-end encryption
  • Advanced fraud detection (via Authorize.Net)
  • 24/7 fraud and chargeback management team
Transaction fees on cheapest plan ~2% + 0¢
Monthly subscription on cheapest plan $9.00

Paysafe’s integration with HIPAA-compliant software Amilia enables comprehensive management for therapy practices. Its functionalities include client databases, scheduling, memberships, online registrations, facility bookings, and various types of supported payment methods. You can custom-brand the software and integrate it directly into your therapy practice’s website.

Paysafe and Amilia make the perfect match for established therapists who organize events, seminars, and retreats and sell memberships globally on top of seeing patients one-on-one. This software also allows you to manage your employees and access reports. It even includes social equity tools to offer targeted benefits and financial assistance to disadvantaged community members in need of therapy.

Paysafe’s lower-than-usual online fees starting at 0.99% + 25¢ (debit cards) and 1.99% + 25¢ (credit cards)  per transaction can significantly cut your processing bill if you process a high volume of transactions online, whether through registrations for your events or session bookings. Its interchange-plus plan is just as affordable with a fee of $7.95 and 0.30% + ¢10 per transaction.

Features and Benefits

  • Accept payments globally. Paysafe supports global payment processing in over 120 markets and 250 payment methods, including local options. This feature is especially beneficial for therapists offering memberships, online sessions, and event tickets worldwide.
  • Discounted payment gateway. The Authorize.net payment gateway is available at a significantly reduced cost through Paysafe. It also includes a virtual terminal, enabling you to process payments over the phone when patients make bookings, protecting your practice from no-show losses.
  • Free mobile card reader. Paysafe offers a compatible mobile card reader for free. This tool is essential for therapists who wish to accept payments within the office without a bulky POS setup or remotely at events, enhancing the flexibility of payment options.
  • Accept cash online. You can accept cash online with Paysafecash. It allows your patients to pay their therapy invoices in cash online by generating a barcode for the transaction that you take at some of the 200,000 partner locations to scan and get the cash.
Read our Paysafe review for more details.

Integrates with HIPAA-compliant software
Third-party HIPAA-compliant software solutions
  • Amilia management software
  • Clover POS software (optional)
  • Authorize.Net payment gateway and virtual terminal
Security features
  • Level 1 PCI compliant
  • GDPR compliant
  • Tokenization
  • End-to-end encryption
  • Advanced fraud detection
Transaction fees on cheapest plan 0.99% + 25¢ (debit cards)
Monthly subscription on cheapest plan $16.00
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Stax is an ideal solution if your practice extends beyond one-on-one sessions, like selling online courses, webinars, journals, and books. If your multiple income streams result in a high volume of transactions, Stax could save you up to 40% thanks to its membership pricing model. Its low transaction fees of 0% + 10¢ (in-person) can also save you money if you process large transactions.

Stax is a great solution if you need both payment processing and HIPAA-compliant software for your US-based practice. Your monthly fee includes nearly every tool you could need for your business. For example, you can create digital invoices and allow clients to pay in full or in installments. You can also set up payment plans and recurring invoices for repeat patients.

If you see clients in-person, you can also benefit from Stax’s fantastic selection of hardware. You can get a free terminal can use your smartphone or tablet as a terminal. This will allow you to set up invoices, charge cards on file (via the virtual terminal), and manually enter card information. If you connect the Authorize.Net payment gateway, you’ll also be able to accept PayPal.

Features and Benefits

  • Built-in shopping carts. If you already have a website, clients can make bookings and pay for sessions or deposits with Stax’s one-click shopping cart.
  • Analytics and reporting. Every Stax plan grants access to Stax Pay software and its reporting and analytics dashboard, allowing you to keep an eye on your practice’s financial health throughout the year.
  • Industry-leading security. Stax has a comprehensive guide to help you achieve PCI compliance. You’ll also get a PCI compliance dashboard that guides you through your yearly security assessments and shows your current compliance status.
  • Fraud protection. Stax’s virtual terminal uses the Address Verification Service (AVS) to detect potential fraud. It also places temporary holds on customer accounts that require additional verification, protecting you from fraudulent transactions and chargebacks.
Read our expert Stax review to learn more about this all-in-one platform.

Integrates with HIPAA-compliant software
Third-party HIPAA-compliant software solutions
  • Analytics and reporting
  • Digital invoicing
  • Custom and pre-built shopping carts
  • Software integrations, backups, and more
Security features
  • Level 1 PCI-compliant processing
  • Helps merchants achieve PCI compliance
  • Fraud and chargeback prevention
  • Advanced fraud detection (via Authorize.Net)
Transaction fees on cheapest plan 0% + 10¢ (in-person)
Monthly subscription on cheapest plan
$99.00

Payment Depot prioritizes monthly savings for healthcare businesses, offering per-transaction fees as low as 0% + 10¢ (in-person). Whether you choose its Starter plan for $79.00/month or its Growth plan for $99.00/month, you can access fair and transparent fees that help you minimize your practice’s expenses. Payment Depot is best for low-volume practices as the maximum you can process is $125,000 (Starter) – $500,000 (Growth) per year. 

Every Payment Depot merchant receives a free Dejavoo Z11 terminal, an EMV-enabled terminal that accepts contactless payments. If your business needs more than one terminal, you can negotiate multiple free terminals or purchase one of its Clover terminals/POS systems. It offers Clover Flex, Clover Mini LTE, Clover Station POS, and Clover Station Pro, which all come with HIPAA–compliant tools to help manage your practice.

Integrations for QuickBooks, Sage, and e-commerce platforms like WooCommerce allow you to automate processes and manage your business more efficiently. If you’re a therapist offering several services, you can create an online store with a customized checkout page, manage appointments, send reminders, and integrate with gateways like Authorize.Net.

Features and Benefits

  • Next-day deposits. Payment Depot gives you access to your money within 24 hours of every transaction, regardless of the payment method used.
  • 24/7 risk monitoring team. Aiming to reduce the risk of chargebacks and fraud, they keep an eye on policies and methods of fraud – notifying you of effective solutions before they take place.
  • All-in-one dashboard. It offers an extensive dashboard for managing your practice’s payments, allowing you to create and send branded invoices, run promotions, monitor sales performance, and more.
  • Compliance. Payment Depot complies with the highest level of PCI standards while also being GDPR-compliant. Despite the US not requiring GDPR compliance, it does so to ensure transparency and data protection.
To find out more, read our comprehensive Payment Depot review.

Integrates with HIPAA-compliant software
Third-party HIPAA-compliant software solutions
  • Clover POS software (optional)
  • Custom and pre-built shopping carts
  • Authorize.Net payment gateway
  • Software integrations
Security features
  • PCI-compliant
  • GDPR-compliant
  • End-to-end encryption and tokenization
  • Payer authentication
  • 24/7 fraud risk monitoring
Transaction fees on cheapest plan 0% + 10¢ (in-person)
Monthly subscription on cheapest plan
$79.00/month

5. Sekure Payment Experts: Tailored Payment Processing for Healthcare Professionals

Before you open a merchant account with Sekure Payment Experts, you can fill out its healthcare business survey to identify the best POS system for your practice. Based on the features I chose, which included patient engagement tools, patient check-in, and recurring payments, Sekure recommended the Practice Management Bridge POS solution, its free PCI Plus program for expert-managed PCI compliance, and free same-day funding.

Sekure offers three pricing plans: interchange-plus, simplified flat rate, and the Edge Program. For the best rates, consider its interchange-plus plan, which offers per-transaction fees of 2.99% + 19¢ (in-person & online) – subject to change every six months. If you’re looking for predictable expenses, you can get per-transaction fees of 3.5% + 19¢ (in-person & online) on its simplified flat-rate plan. The Edge Program is a zero-cost processing plan, reducing costs to just $39.95/month.

Unfortunately, Sekure doesn’t offer proprietary e-commerce solutions like Stax. However, it does offer various partnerships with Magento, BigCommerce, OpenCart, and ZenCart. If you require a payment gateway, you can access Authorize.Net at lower rates than usual. In some cases, Sekure may waive its gateway fee altogether.

Features and Benefits

  • Rate security guarantee. If Sekure can’t match your current rates, it may cover your current processor’s cancellation fee when you commit to a 3-year contract.
  • Certified payment experts. Its industry-specific experts offer specialized guidance to help you navigate the complexities of payment processing and storing patient information. Sekure’s experts can be an invaluable resource if you own a startup.
  • Free HIPAA-compliant equipment. Every merchant gets free equipment with no monthly or annual fees. Better yet, all its HIPAA-compliant POS solutions use encryption protocols and access controls to ensure patient privacy.
  • Breach forgiveness. If you join its free PCI Plus program and are classified as PCI Level-3 or PCI Level-4, you get access to $100,000 to cover data breaches. You won’t have to reimburse any expenses unless it exceeds $100,000.
Read our in-depth Sekure Payment Experts review to learn more.

Integrates with HIPAA-compliant software
Third-party HIPAA-compliant software solutions
  • Practice Management Bridge and Payanywhere
  • Custom and pre-built shopping carts
  • Authorize.Net payment gateway
Security features
  • Level 1 PCI-compliant
  • Advanced fraud detection
  • Breach forgiveness
  • Chargeback team
Transaction fees on cheapest plan 0% (4% passed to customer)
Monthly subscription on cheapest plan
$39.95/month

6. Chase Payment Solutions: Dedicated Processing Solutions for Healthcare

Chase Payment Solutions’ InstaMed integration offers a suite of HIPAA-compliant features. InstaMed uses proprietary AI technology to tailor payment plans to your patient’s needs. It allows you to create easy-to-understand statements with personalized messaging to simplify the billing process and increase payment compliance.

You can leverage InstaMed’s Reporting and Insights dashboard to gain greater visibility over the performance of your therapy business. From here, you can access your transaction data, valuable consumer loyalty insights, client behavior, and progress reports. You can also use it to store communication preferences, benefits information, and payment activity for each client, improving the efficiency of your practice and patient satisfaction.

Compared to most of my recommendations, Chase Payment Solutions has pricier per-transaction fees. You can expect to pay 2.6% + 10¢ per in-person, 3.5% + 10¢ per keyed-in, and 2.9% + 25¢ per e-commerce transaction. But unlike other processors, it doesn’t charge any monthly fees for its software. That said, the HIPAA-compliant InstaMed integration costs extra. InstaMed provides custom pricing, meaning you’d have to reach out to get a quote.

Features and Benefits

  • Chase Mobile app. The Chase Mobile app offers features like real-time transaction tracking and the ability to send and receive payments swiftly. It allows you to manage your business finances on the go, giving you more time to focus on your primary role: patient care.
  • Recurring billing. To avoid payment delays, you can set up an automatic collection service. Chase allows you to securely store your patient payment data and use it to bill them automatically. This encourages eStatements and online payments that reduce paper waste and your overall processing costs.
  • Free same-day funding. With a Chase Business Banking account, you can get free same-day funding, a benefit that is usually not available or comes at an additional cost. This quick turnaround is especially beneficial for managing operational expenses and optimizing financial planning.
  • Zero liability protection. Chase Payment Solutions’ zero liability protection ensures that in the event of unauthorized transactions such as fraud or theft related to your Chase Business Banking account, you’re not held responsible for the costs. Chase promises to reimburse any money lost in these situations.
For more, check out our in-depth Chase Payment Solutions review.

Integrates with HIPAA-compliant software
Third-party HIPAA-compliant software solutions
  • InstaMed integration (digital invoicing, reporting and analytics, patient engagement features)
  • Authorize.Net payment gateway
Security features
  • PCI-compliant
  • End-to-end encryption and tokenization
  • Payer verification
  • Advanced fraud detection and prevention
Transaction fees on cheapest plan 2.6% + 10¢
Monthly subscription on cheapest plan  $0

Other Notable Credit Card Processors for Therapists

7. POS Pros

POS Pros stands out with its personalized approach to POS equipment, making it best suited for therapists conducting in-person sessions. You’ll receive a free consultation from a POS specialist who will advise you on the right equipment for your needs. The specialist will most likely suggest HIPAA-compliant Clover or Revel equipment, which enables you to accept bookings, securely store patient data, and collect feedback all in one place.

POS Pros’s interchange-plus pricing structure provides highly competitive rates. You can expect to pay $5.00/month and 0.30% + 10¢ (in-person) per transaction. However, I advise you to inquire about potential additional fees because of POS Pros’s lack of transparency in pricing. Emerging solo practitioners can save with its affordable cash discount plan, freeing up more resources for patient care.

8. PaymentCloud

PaymentCloud offers various hardware for card-present transactions, including Clover and Payanywhere, for therapists requiring HIPAA compliance. Most of its terminals, card readers, and full POS systems are free for the duration of your contract, but you will have to return them if you cancel your PaymentCloud contract.

PaymentCloud has 3 plans: Low-Risk, Mid-Risk, and High-Risk. The higher the risk, the more you’ll pay. Its transaction fees range from Around 2.1% + 15¢ to Around 3.95% + 15¢, with each plan incurring the same monthly fee of $14.00. However, be aware that you may run into hidden fees for electronic fund transfers, address verification services, voice verification, and batch processing. Plus, you’ll pay $19.95 for the Authorize.Net or NMI payment gateways – substantially more than other processors.

These Are the Best Credit Card Processing for Therapists

While credit card processors don’t need to be HIPAA-compliant to handle your sales, your payment processing software does. This does limit what software you can use. Fortunately, all of the processors on this list have built-in or available integrations for HIPAA-compliant software.

New and small practices will find a lot of support from Leaders Merchant Services. LMS offers custom pricing and cheap rates. On top of that, you can receive a free high-quality Clover device and business financing. It’s ideal if you need only the essentials and want to save on credit card processing.

I recommend Paysafe to established therapists organizing events, seminars, retreats, offering memberships, and conducting online sessions worldwide. Paysafe integrates with the HIPAA-compliant Amilia software, enabling scheduling, membership management, online registrations, and facility bookings. You’ll benefit from a discounted payment gateway, lower-than-usual online transaction fees, and a free mobile card reader for in-person payments.

Stax suits therapists with multiple income streams, such as those selling online courses, webinars, journals, and books in high volumes. Its subscription-based fee structure and the industry’s lowest transaction fees can save you up to 40% if you process over $8,000/month. The monthly fee includes nearly every tool you’d need for your practice like digital invoicing tools and one-click shopping cart setup.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the best credit card processors for psychologists and therapists.
Best Feature Best For Monthly fee on cheapest plan Transaction fees on cheapest plan
Leaders Merchant Services Custom pricing tailored to your practice, and free Clover POS hardware Therapists looking for an affordable processor that covers all the essentials $9.00 ~2% + 0¢
Paysafe A wide range of invoicing tools and Rectangle Health integration Therapists who organize events and sell memberships and online sessions globally $16.00 0.99% + 25¢ (debit cards)
Stax Comprehensive HIPAA-compliant payment and business management software with the industry’s lowest transaction fees Therapists with multiple income streams that process a high volume of transactions each month $99.00 0% + 10¢ (in-person)
Payment Depot Minimize expenses with fair and transparent pricing plans Low-volume therapists processing less than $500,000 per year $79.00 0% + 10¢ (in-person)
Sekure Payment Experts Healthcare business survey instantly finds the best POS system and merchant services for your practice Startup therapists and practices looking for specialist support and guidance $39.95 0% (4% passed to customer)
Chase Payment Solutions A suite of HIPAA-compliant features through InstaMed integration Established therapy practices with more complex needs N/A 2.6% + 10¢

FAQ

Do payment providers have to be HIPAA compliant?

Payment providers do not have to be HIPAA compliant if all they do is process payments. That’s because under HIPAA regulations, credit card processing companies are simply providing a financial service. However, if these merchant services providers offer built-in software that handles (or has access to) PHI, they are considered healthcare business associates and need to be HIPAA-compliant.

How do you charge clients online?

To charge therapy clients online, you have two main options: you can use a payment gateway to accept payments through your website, or you can use invoicing software to create digital invoices that can be paid online. Either way, you need to make sure that any software that handles PHI is HIPAA compliant. For example, LMS integrates with Clover’s HIPAA-Compliant software to ensure secure payment processing.

Is Helcim HIPAA-compliant?

No. Helcim specifically states in its help center that healthcare businesses should not use Helcim to store PHI as its software is not HIPAA-compliant. If you need an interchange-plus payment processor with HIPAA-compliant software for your therapy practice, I recommend Leaders Merchant Services instead. You’ll get competitive per-transaction rates, great POS support, and (for an extra monthly fee) Clover’s HIPAA-compliant POS and e-commerce software.

Can therapists use Venmo for payment?

No. While Venmo is covered by the payment processing service exemption under HIPAA, it shares user information with PayPal. PayPal also sells user data to advertisers. Therapists need to be aware that most of these payment apps are not HIPAA-compliant. Several of the best payment processors offer compliant convenient payment options like digital invoicing, payment links, and even subscription plans, making it easy for clients to pay you without legal risk.

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