A Comprehensive Guide on How to Get an ESA Letter
Who doesn’t enjoy the company of a doting animal? An ESA does that and so much more. Emotional support animals become a person’s companion in good and bad. However, there are some documents that you need to have if you want to keep an ESA. The most important document is an ESA letter.
You can get this letter only from a licensed medical professional living in your state. Patients suffering from anxiety or depression often find it difficult to talk to a doctor and ask them to prescribe an ESA.
How to get an ESA letter? Read this guide to understand the steps.
What does an ESA Letter Look Like?
An ESA letter is on the letterhead of a licensed therapist. Following are the elements of a valid ESA letter:
- Full name of the patient.
- Details of the mental illness the patient is suffering from.
- Details of the time period since the therapist is helping them.
- What are the hindrances in that person’s daily life due to the medical condition?
- How the ESA will be helpful for the patient.
- Issue and Expiry date of the ESA letter.
- Full name of the therapist.
- Clear signatures of the therapist on the letter.
After you get your letter, make sure that it has all of these elements and is printed on the official letterhead of an LMHP.
Does your ESA Need Training?
Your ESA is not required to get professional training. However, if you think your ESA is not well-behaved to take in public, you can train them personally at home. Emotional support dogs and an emotional support cat are the most common ESA and you can learn how to train your dog to stay in the yard at home as well.
In addition, you don’t need to register your emotional support animal, a valid ESA letter is enough.
Does your ESA Need to Wear a Special Vest?
It is not mandatory for an ESA to wear a special vest. It is reserved mostly for service animals so that they can be identified in public. However, you can make your ESA wear a vest as it will be easy for you to find your ESA in public and people will also be able to know that it is not just your pet. The best part is, you have several emotional support dog vest choices to choose from and get for your dog.
How to Get an ESA Letter?
“How do I get an ESA letter legally?”
Getting an ESA letter is not difficult for people who are suffering from a mental illness. The number of people with an emotional support animal (ESA) has increased over the years which shows how many people are suffering from silent mental and emotional disabilities. ESA helps such people cope with the consequences of stress, anxiety, depression, and PTSD.
Need an ESA letter for apartment or a house? You can get an ESA letter by any of the following methods:
- 1. Online ESA Letter
“How to get an ESA letter online?”
You can get a legitimate ESA letter online through several sources. People who are too anxious to visit a doctor can order an ESA letter from the comfort of their house. Be wary when you order an ESA letter online because there are too many fake websites. Be skeptical if the letter is too cheap or does not come with your name on it.
MyESALetter.net is a legitimate site where you can get an authentic letter. To get the letter, follow these steps:
- Fill the form
- Mention the symptoms of your condition in the form
- Get results
Our mental health professional will tell whether you need an ESA or not based on your answers. Need an ESA letter on an urgent basis? Contact us today and get a legit ESA letter in your mail.
Most of the time, your doctor will prescribe you an emotional support animal based on your condition and the consequences of your mental illness. However, there might be cases when your LMHP wouldn’t recommend an ESA for you.
If they do agree, make sure that you get the letter on the official letterhead of that therapist. Have you decided to talk to your therapist for a letter? Read these steps before you talk to them:
- Schedule an appointment with your therapist and make it clear that you want to talk about getting an emotional support animal.
- Discuss your symptoms with your doctor so they can recommend solutions. You can discuss the animal you want as your emotional support animal. For example, if you want an ESA letter for dog, talk to your therapist.
- Talk about getting an ESA, and see what your therapist has to say about it.
- If your therapist does agree, ask them for an ESA letter with his signature.
Before talking to your therapist, you should know how to ask your doctor for an emotional support animal letter and communicate your requirements.
What are ESA Letter Requirements
People who are suffering from mental illnesses qualify for an emotional support letter. Following mental illnesses qualify a person for an emotional support animal letter.
- Social Anxiety
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
These are some of the mental health conditions that are recognized by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) for emotional support animals. These people are eligible for an ESA letter. Make sure that you have a diagnosis before deciding to get an emotional support animal.
Who can Write an ESA Letter?
Only a licensed mental health professional in your state can write an ESA letter if you have been diagnosed with any of the mental illnesses mentioned above.
Can a Physician Write an ESA Letter?
No, an ordinary physician can’t write an ESA letter unless they are authorized to do so. ESA owners must get the letter from a licensed mental health practitioner.
Benefits of having a Valid ESA Letter
A valid ESA letter will allow you to enjoy several benefits. These benefits are:
- A legitimate ESA letter will exempt you from paying an additional fee on pet deposits and pet applications. You can just show your valid ESA letter for housing at places with a no-pet policy and if allowed, take your ESA with you.
- Under federal law, having a valid ESA letter means that you can live wherever you want to without worrying about paying pet fees or any additional pet deposit. You can show the ESA letter for housing to your landlord so they let your emotional support animal live with you.
- Another benefit of having an ESA letter is that your landlord can not put any weight restrictions on your ESA or show bias towards a specific breed. The only valid objection by your landlord would be if your ESA is potentially harmful to the property.
- ESA letter will expire after a year so you don’t have to worry about renewal after a few months.
- Take your ESA to any place, a coffee shop, book club meeting, or a park, you can show your ESA letter and ask for permission. It is most likely that you will be allowed inside.
- If you want to fly with your ESA, you can show your ESA letter to the airline 24 hours before and ask for permission. If the airline allows, you will be allowed to take your ESA with you after paying some amount of money.
A lot of times, people assume that the hassle of getting an ESA letter is not worth it, however, you will feel a lot less anxious if you have an ESA letter and want to take your ESA out on a walk or on a road trip. Discuss with your therapist the prospects of you getting an ESA letter and whether you qualify for an ESA letter or not.
Study shows that having an ESA is not just good for your mental health but also improves the physical well-being of the person. If you have an emotional support dog, you will have to take them on a walk, this will keep you physically active as well.
Difference between ESAs and Service Animals
There are some key differences between ESAs and service animals, you can’t use these two interchangeably. Both of these animals are for separate purposes, let’s see the differences between these two:
- ESAs don’t require any formal training while service animals are given special training to perform specific jobs such as calming their owner in case of an epilepsy attack or reminding their owners to take their medications.
- Service animals can only be service dogs or miniature horses, however, there is a long list of approved emotional support animals that you can choose from.
- Psychiatric service dogs have specific jobs while ESAs provide companionship and emotional support to their owners by being present.
Laws that ESA Owners Should Know About
ESA owners are protected under law and it is important to know about these laws in case someone denies you of them.
Fair Housing Act (FHA)
Under the Fair Housing Act for emotional support animals, ESA owners can live with their furry friends without having to pay any additional fee. Even if the apartment or house has a no-pet policy, having an ESA letter means that you have a right to be with your ESA animal.
Landlords can ask you to show your ESA letter and you will have to renew the letter after a year. However, your landlord has no right to ask you about your disability or deny access to your ESA based on its breed, gender, or weight.
The US Department of Housing and Urban Development is a department responsible for investigating any discrimination against ESA owners. They forbid landlords from asking detailed questions about a person’s disability. Landlords also can’t explicitly ask for any documentation.
Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA)
The airline laws have changed in 2020, with limited access to ESAs on airplanes. It depends on the airline to allow your emotional support animal to fly with you. The airline can deny the request if they are concerned for passengers.
A proactive idea is to let the airline know that you want to fly with your ESA and request it by showing your ESA letter.
Workplace and Education Institutions
The laws also state that ESA can join their owners in their workplace and education institutions if the authorities allow. In some cases, people have emotional support animals that can be threatening to the public.
You can show your ESA letter to request the university or college administration so you can live with your ESA inside the dorms too.
ESA Letter Example
To help you understand what an ESA letter looks like, go through the example given below.
After going through this template, you will understand the important elements of an ESA letter. Now you know how to get an ESA letter and the laws that protect you. Thanks to online services, it is very easy to get an ESA letter now. Make sure that the service providers are legitimate and not a random site offering free ESA letter.
MyESALetter.net offers legitimate ESA letters signed by an LMHP. So instead of searching for a cheap ESA letter online, contact us to get your letter at a great price and avoid getting scammed.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who can legally write an ESA letter?
A licensed medical health professional (LMHP) in your state can write an ESA letter on their letterhead.
How much does an ESA letter cost?
An ESA letter will cost you around 100$ to 150$. However, depending on the service providers, it can be a bit more costly as well.
Are online ESA letters legal?
Yes, online ESA letters are legal. You should make sure that the website should be legitimate. Understand the elements of a valid ESA letter to filter scammers.
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