What Is My Risk with a Walk-in Patient?

If you plan to encourage walk-ins to your practice, consider these factors.

Risk Management

What Is My Risk with Walk-in Patients?

Question: I plan to move my practice to a busy street next to a regional mall. I'd like to take advantage of the location and build my practice by encouraging walk-ins. I think it would be a great opportunity to reach people who have back or neck pain to try chiropractic care for the first time. What liability issues should I be aware of with accepting walk-ins?


Answer: Make sure you treat walk-ins in the same manner you would treat any new patient – without shortcuts. 

Even though the patient may have the expectation of walking in and getting an adjustment right away, your evaluation and treatment should not, in any way, be shortchanged. Histories, examinations, assessments, treatments, follow-up plans and referrals should be documented.

Also, keep in mind that the patient may be visiting you just this once and may go to someone else for future chiropractic care. You will need a complete record of the care you provided in accordance with the office procedures necessary to protect your patients and your practice.


The information in the NCMIC Learning Center is offered solely for general information and educational purposes. It is not offered as, nor does it represent, legal or professional advice. Neither does this information constitute a guideline, practice parameter or standard of care. You should not act or rely upon this information without seeking the advice of an attorney familiar with the specific legal requirements of the state(s) in which you practice. If there is a discrepancy between the site and an insurance policy you have with NCMIC, the policy will prevail.