Late Client / Cancellation Policies

“There is only one success – to be able to spend your life in your own way.”
Christopher Morley

Although you hope all of your clients will show up on time and give you plenty of notice if they need to change or cancel appointments, that isn’t always the case. Preparing what your procedure will be, and communicating this to your clients saves you from potentially being taken advantage of, and avoids possible therapeutic ruptures if these policies need to be enforced.

Late Client Policy

Ask yourself:

  • How long is too long for you wait to see if a client will show up if they haven’t let you know they are running late?
  • If it was your last client of the day, how long would you stick around?
  • If this became a pattern, how long would you continue to see that client?

Depending on your clientele, this will often be an unused policy, but in my experience it is helpful to have a communicated plan in place so you aren’t waiting to see if certain clients show up. Having a policy lets clients know that your time is valuable and that if they are running behind, they just need to let you know. As always, you can use your discretion as to when and how to apply this policy.

Potential Scripting:

If the client is more than (insert timeframe) late for their scheduled appointment and no contact has been made indicating the client is running late or is still planning on attending their session, the session will be forfeited and (insert charge amount) will be charged. The session can be rescheduled for a later date once all fees have been paid in full. If more than (insert amount) sessions are forfeited, no more sessions will be booked.


Cancellation / Change Policy

Sometimes your clients will need to change or cancel their appointments at the last minute. You don’t want to find yourself scrambling to fill a space so you can meet your budget. Having a solid policy lets clients know what they can expect if their plans change.

Ask yourself:

  • How much notice would you need from clients who would like to change or cancel their scheduled appointments? Industry standard tends to be anywhere from 24 to 48 hours but you can set whatever time feels like it works for you as long as your clients are informed and aware.
  • How much will you charge clients if they late change or cancel there scheduled appointment? This tends to vary between a small fee, half-session fee or full-session fee.

Potential Scripting:

(Insert time frame) notice must be given to change or cancel appointments times otherwise, (insert late cancellation fee) will be charged. There is a high demand for services and certain times of day; your session is reserved exclusively for you and therefore not available to others.