As more and more people are turning to emotional support animals, nowadays, to treat their psychological condition, several new companies are coming out daily with a promise to provide you with an ESA letter and other required certifications. But imagine this. You want to have an emotional support animal for you. And you’re all too excited that you even qualify for one. Now you just can’t wait to apply for an ESA letter. But as there are so many options available online, you’re too overwhelmed.
Let’s say you even find a company, at last. You’re not very sure though, but you decide to take a chance, anyway. They’re offering instant approval and quick delivery of your documents And that too, at an amazing bargain price. So, you pay your fees and finally get your ESA letter.
Now, let’s say, you decide to take a trip with your ESA. You book your flight, submit a request for an ESA and do all necessary things you need to do as per the emotional support animal laws. But, on the day of your flight, you reach the airport and find out that your ESA letter isn’t actually valid.
You’re shocked! You’ve been SCAMMED!
All the embarrassment of wasting so much time and money on this fake ESA letter is killing you from inside. The airline company won’t let you fly with your pet. Your landlord isn’t ready to let you keep it with you. And that fake ESA company isn’t replying to your mails. It’s all just too frustrating.
You don’t want to end up in a situation like this, right? Don’t worry. We won’t even let you. ESA scams are on the rise, nowadays. But if you’re a bit aware, you can save yourself from being a victim of this. And in this article, we’re gonna tell you how to identify a fake and fraudulent ESA company to save yourself from all that frustration and anger.
So, let’s not wait any further.
What exactly is an ESA Letter?
We all know how an ESA can help us manage our psychological conditions by providing us with so much unconditional love and support. However, while all pets can do this, not every one of them is an ESA. In order to be considered an ESA, the animal must be recommended by a qualified healthcare professional. And for this, they need to write an ESA letter for you.
Once you get an ESA letter, you can enjoy all the benefits provided under the emotional support animal laws. These benefits include the permission to fly and to live with your ESA, without any extra charges. Also, you should note that if a person has a valid ESA letter, he doesn’t have to produce any other documents to enjoy the benefits provided under the law.
Here’s how to Spot a Fake ESA Letter?
With the rising popularity of ESAs to help people manage their medical condition, the fraudulent incidences of giving out a fake ESA letter are on a steep rise. And therefore, you need to be cautious while getting one for yourself. Before you fill out the form and submit your fees, check the company for these seven “no-no” signs.
- Letter is not by a Licensed Professional
Your ESA letter won’t be valid if it’s not from a qualified licensed professional, i.e. a professional psychiatrist, psychologist, etc. So, make sure they are providing you with the letter on an official letterhead that has the healthcare professional’s name, registration number and other details on it.
2. Healthcare Professional is not Licensed Properly
This is quite an important point, which is generally overlooked while applying for an ESA letter. You must check your therapist’s license in order to make sure they are registered in the same state as you are residing. In the United States, each state has a separate medical licensing board. And therefore, in order to practice medicine in a state, the professionals must register themselves in that particular state. Otherwise, their recommendation won’t be considered valid.
3. Price too Low
As the old saying goes, you only get what you actually pay for. It’s valid here too. If you see a price that is unbelievably cheap, it’s probably a scam. Some differences in price are understandable, but too much much variation might be a red flag.
4. No Client Support
While getting an ESA letter is the main objective of this whole process, it doesn’t just end here. Your landlord or airline company may show some reluctance in accommodating your pet, even if you have a valid ESA letter. They may sometimes ask for some additional documents or information. This is where the client’s support comes into the picture. Good ESA companies take pride in their client support and are on their toes to help their customers handle any such situations where they need something extra.
5. Company Claims to be a “Registry”
Quite a lot of people have this misconception that they need to register their ESA in order to enjoy its benefits under the law. But it’s not nearly true. You don’t need any registration or certification to make your pet an ESA. Only a valid ESA letter can do that.
6. Payment Page not Secure
Carefully check the payment page of the website. If the address doesn’t have a padlock in it, or if it starts with “https” instead of “https”, the website is not actually safe. And it’s probably a good idea to leave as soon as possible. This is quite an easy and quick way to check if the website is legitimate or not.
7. They Provide a Letter without any Assessment
The most obvious and compulsory requirement of getting an ESA letter is that you must qualify for it. And for that you must go through an assessment with a qualified licensed professional. But if a company claims to provide you with an ESA letter just in exchange of money, the chances are very high that you won’t get your letter. A legitimate company will never provide an ESA letter without properly assessing the patient.
Though the internet is filled with frauds and scams, nowadays, there are many legitimate and reliable options, too, available online to get a valid ESA letter. You just gotta do your research before you actually apply for it. I’m sure, you don’t want to end up being a victim of such a scam. So, to avoid any such frustrating situation, you need to keep yourself vigilant and aware of what’s right and what’s not. And the above list can surely help you with that.
But if you still have any questions or queries in your mind, feel free to ask us in the comment section. We’ll definitely try to solve it.