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Mar 28 / Hannah

Is Your Discount Plan Legitimate?

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Woman filling out paperwork for a dental plan

Discount dental plans have been saving people money on their dental work for more than 30 years, but inevitably you will find some black sheep in the pack who are just trying to deceive you for their own monetary gain. Unfortunately, some people’s only experience is with a discount plan that tries to scam them out of money, and they immediately assume that all discount plans are bad – preventing them from ever joining a good discount plan and saving money in the future.

Discount Plans on Good Morning America

In reality, there are plenty of good dental plans on the market that can significantly cut down your dental bills.

In fact, Good Morning America actually recommended discount plans… and Careington in particular. You can read our take on it at the 1Dental blog or go straight to the source, Good Morning America.

Most people who are skeptical about dental discount plans simply don’t know how they work, which is understandable. Discount dental plans have been around since 1979, but the idea of typical insurance started in the late 1920s, so people are more familiar with the concept of traditional dental insurance and how it works. Some dental plans out there are scams nonetheless, but this list should help you determine whether your plan will help you. We’ll be comparing common misunderstandings to the Careington 500 Series dental plan and how it works. If you’re looking for a dental plan, we want to encourage you to be informed, plain and simple. Do your research, and you will enjoy a dental plan that truly benefits you.

Dental Discount Plans – Common Misunderstandings

This should help explain common misunderstandings about discount plans, as well as help you determine if a discount plan is legitimate or a scam.

  • The fee schedule is inaccurate or not fully disclosed. Our best plan, the Careington 500 Series, has the full fee schedule available to anyone online at 1Dental.com – even before signing up. All the general dentists in your state who take the plan have that exact same list and are contracted to charge by it. And if it’s not on the fee schedule, you still get 20% off (excluding lab fees and a few cosmetic procedures).
  • There is a very small list of dental providers from which to choose. We have more than 64,000 dentists nationwide who take our plan. Don’t believe us? Check your area to find a dentist.
  • Once I pick a dentist, I’m stuck with them unless I go through a lot of expensive red tape. On the Careington plan, you are completely free to go to any dentist in the network without notifying us.
  • It’s wrong to trick people into thinking it’s insurance. We agree entirely. We clearly state in many places on our website that the discount plan is not insurance. And why would we claim to be insurance? Discount plans and insurance are each beneficial in their own way.
  • I’ll be stuck with a list of dental school rejects. Actually, all the dentists who accept the Careington plan have gone through a screening process and must meet several requirements and qualifications before they can join the network of dentists who accept the plan. This includes having been in practice for at least 2 years, guaranteeing experienced dental professionals.
  • I’ll lose a lot of money if I need to opt out and cancel the plan. This is typical with scams – they know their plan is bad, and you’ll find out soon, so they have to find a way to keep your money right away. With Careington, however, you are not stuck in this plan indefinitely. If you need to cancel for any reason, we have a 30-day money back guarantee (minus your processing fee). If it’s been longer than 30 days, you can still cancel with no penalty. No scam would allow you that kind of freedom, so watch for that when doing your research!
  • What if prices go up, or if most of the discounts are in the lower end of the percentage with only a few significantly discounted? These are important questions to ask when you’re looking for a dental plan. Having access to a full fee schedule can help you double-check that you’ll actually be getting the advertised discounts. The cost to be on our plan has stayed the same for years, and it actually is guaranteed to go down after the first year because at that point you are no longer responsible for the processing fee. The Careington 500 Series fee schedule was updated in February 2010, but we actually added a few additional procedures. The discounts are guaranteed to be at least 20% off (excluding lab fees and a few cosmetic procedures), and most discounts for basic work are actually closer to 50% or more.

Of course there are some discount plans that are scams or not legitimate – but the same goes for regular insurance. That doesn’t mean that all forms of insurance are bad, so why do some people automatically assume that all discount plans are bad?

Learn More About Dental Plans

Check out one of our popular articles, “FTC Warns of Discount Scams,” on how to determine if a discount plan is actually what it claims to be.

Still not sure on the difference between discount plans and typical insurance? Check out our handy Dental Insurance & Discount Plan Comparison Guide.

If you want to hear what people are saying about 1Dental.com and the Careington 500 Series dental discount plan, visit our 1Dental.com Facebook page.

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