With the rise in mental and emotional health challenges, emotional support animals (ESAs) have become a common method of seeking support and relief. In 2011, the National Service Animal Registry documented 2,400 service and emotional support animals across the country. Now, this figure has surged to almost 200,000 animals nationwide.
CertaPet is a company that claims to provide authentic emotional support animal letters (ESA letters) required for travel and housing. However, as the demand for ESAs increases, it is crucial to ensure the credibility of service providers before obtaining an ESA letter.
In this review, we'll assess CertaPet's reputation and ESA letter services. Leveraging our expertise in animal therapy and mental health, our goal is to help you decide whether CertaPet is the right service for your circumstance. So, what is an emotional support animal, and how do you get an ESA letter?
Understanding Emotional Support Animals and ESA Letters
Before evaluating whether CertaPet is legit, it's essential to understand the role of emotional support animals and the importance of ESA letters.
What Is an Emotional Support Animal?
ESAs provide companionship and emotional support to patients seeking animal therapy with mental or emotional disabilities. These animals are not trained to perform specific tasks like service animals but instead offer comfort and a calming presence.
How to Get an ESA Letter
To obtain an ESA letter, an individual must undergo an assessment by a licensed mental health professional (LMHP), who determines if they qualify for an ESA based on their mental or emotional disability. If deemed appropriate, the LMHP issues the ESA letter, which should include the LMHP's license number, contact information, and the date of issuance.
What Are the Legal Benefits of Emotional Support Animal Letters?
An ESA letter from an LMHP attests to the need for an ESA because of a person's mental or emotional disability. The letter provides legal protection under the Fair Housing Act (FHA), allowing ESA owners to live with their animals in housing with no-pet policies.
With the updated revision of the Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA), only psychiatric service animals and service dogs can accompany their owners on commercial flights. However, some airlines may still accept your letter and accommodate emotional support animals.
CertaPet's Services and Offerings
CertaPet is an emotional support animal letter provider offering ESA letters for qualifying patients. Here's a closer look at their offerings and process:
CertaPet provides ESA and PSD letter consultations. The ESA housing letter enables emotional support animal owners to live with their animals in housing with no-pet policies.
In contrast, the PSD travel letter allows them to fly with their animals in an aircraft cabin in addition to housing protection. However, an emotional support dog or animal now lacks the authorization to travel aboard planes.
People who want ESA letters are put in touch with a licensed mental health professional through the company's online platform. This approach allows quick, convenient assessments without needing in-person appointments.
Fees and Process
To obtain an ESA letter through CertaPet, individuals must complete an online questionnaire, after which they get connected with a licensed mental health professional for a virtual consultation.
The fees for the service range from $149.99 to $199.99, depending on whether the individual needs a housing letter, a travel letter, or both. If approved, the ESA letter is issued and delivered electronically.
CertaPet's Credibility and Compliance
To establish whether CertaPet is a credible emotional support animal letter service, we'll check their conformity with applicable laws and any relevant affiliations or certifications they possess.
Compliance with FHA and ACAA
CertaPet claims to adhere to the requirements of the FHA and the ACAA. Their website states that their LMHPs are licensed in the individual's state of residence, which is necessary for an ESA letter to be legally valid.
Affiliations, Certifications, and Partnerships
CertaPet does not list specific affiliations, certifications, or partnerships on its website that would demonstrate its credibility within the ESA letter service industry. This lack of information can make it difficult for potential clients to gauge the company's legitimacy and trustworthiness.
Privacy Policies and Data Protection
Customer Reviews and Testimonials
Reviewing customer feedback is a good way to figure out what kind of service to expect from CertaPet and how reliable it is.
Positive Reviews: Many customers report positive experiences with CertaPet, praising the ease and convenience of the online assessment process. Others appreciate the prompt service, noting that they received their ESA letter in such a timely manner.
Negative Reviews: Some customers have expressed concerns or dissatisfaction with their experience. Common issues include difficulty connecting with licensed mental health professionals, unresponsiveness from customer service, and questions about the validity of the issued ESA letters.
How to Compare CertaPet to Other ESA Letter Providers
To determine if CertaPet is a legitimate and reliable option for obtaining an ESA letter, comparing their services, fees, and credibility to other popular providers in the industry is helpful. Here are a few key considerations to watch during your search.
Key Factors to Consider
When choosing an ESA letter provider, consider factors such as the provider's compliance with relevant laws, affiliations or certifications, fees, customer reviews, and the overall ease of the process.
Comparison to Other Providers
CertaPet's fees are generally within the same range as other popular providers. However, the lack of affiliations, certifications, or partnerships may raise concerns about their credibility. Additionally, mixed customer reviews suggest that the quality of the service might need to be more consistent.
Based on the comparison, individuals seeking an ESA letter should carefully weigh the pros and cons of using CertaPet. While their telemedicine platform and quick service may be appealing, potential customers should also consider the mixed customer reviews and lack of affiliations or certifications as potential red flags.
Why You Should Choose Pettable Instead
Pettable is a reputable service that provides ESA letters, but it prioritizes customer satisfaction more than CertaPet. Thousands of ESA owners can attest to the expert advice and assistance provided by Pettable. They fully comply with federal and state laws and give the best service regardless of where you live.
Pettable's ESA letters include a money-back guarantee if you do not qualify or if your landlord doesn't accommodate emotional support animals, providing you with greater peace of mind and security. Pettable also offers psychiatric service dog training and certification, making it an excellent choice for all your personal assistance animal needs.
For pet owners seeking an emotional support animal letter, it is crucial to research and assess all available information thoroughly. ESA owners should weigh each provider's benefits and drawbacks, consider their specific needs and circumstances, and make an informed decision.
With this information in mind, CertaPet offers reliable federal and state-compliant ESA letters for housing accommodations. They adhere to legal regulations, work with expert mental health professionals, and possess a solid record of fulfilling customer needs.
Even though CertaPet has a good track record, Pettable stands out as the best ESA letter service because of its great customer service and expansive network of medical experts.
FAQ on Certapet
Is CertaPet a legitimate provider for ESA letters?
Yes, CertaPet is a legitimate provider of Emotional Support Animal (ESA) letters, connecting individuals with licensed mental health professionals to obtain necessary documentation for housing and travel purposes.
What services does CertaPet offer?
CertaPet offers ESA letters for housing and travel, ensuring clients can live and fly with their ESAs. They provide a streamlined online process for obtaining these letters, though ESA travel letters have become less applicable due to airline policy changes.
How does the process to obtain an ESA letter from CertaPet work?
The process involves completing an online questionnaire and then having a consultation with a licensed mental health professional through CertaPet's platform. If approved, the ESA letter is issued electronically.
What are the fees for CertaPet's services?
CertaPet charges fees ranging from $149.99 to $199.99, depending on the type of ESA letter required—whether for housing, travel, or both.
Does CertaPet comply with legal standards?
CertaPet claims compliance with the Fair Housing Act and the Air Carrier Access Act, ensuring that ESA letters are legally valid and issued by professionals licensed in the client's state.
What are common customer experiences with CertaPet?
Customer reviews of CertaPet vary, with many expressing satisfaction with the ease and convenience of the service, while others have raised concerns about connecting with professionals and the validity of the ESA letters.
How does CertaPet ensure privacy and data protection?