You can only legally practice professional counseling in a state you are licensed. Professional practice licenses are regulated by states. If you are licensed professional counselor in Georgia you can only legally practice in Massachusetts if you have a MA counselors license. The same holds true if you are a licensed marriage and family therapist, social worker and numerous other professional practice licensees.
You can practice counseling internationally only if that country permits it. U.S. states have no jurisdiction over other U.S. states let alone other countries. You will need to understand the laws of that country. Regarding your counseling license, the ethics of international practice must be considered. In fact, ethics of international practice is probably a much greater concern than the legal issues.
As of 11/22/2022, there are a few remaining exceptions. Most COVID-19 exceptions for counselors have expired. Even for those states whose COVID-19 exceptions remain in place, there are specific restrictions and exclusions. The most common restriction is that a counselor cannot accept new patients in the receiving state. They may only treat established psychotherapy clients who have relocated to a state. It’s not a good idea to hang your hat on COVID-19 exceptions as a means for building an interjusrisdictional counseling practice.
There are differences in opinion on counselors bartering with their clients. However, consider this fact: the moment you barter with a client, you create a dual relationship. The dual relationship is that now YOU have become THEIR customer. It becomes more likely that disputes can arise and for the therapist to harm the client.
No. There are no states that have implemented and engaged other states in compact agreements. The threshold of “10 states to become effective” means the compact organization can begin to setup their administrative role in the counseling compact.
Here is a direct link to the current 2014 ACA code of ethics: https://www.counseling.org/knowledge-center/ethics/code-of-ethics-resources
This is a great question. Some states the answer is a resounding, yes. Other states do not accept master’s in school counseling degrees for LPC licensing. Although it may not be explicitly stated in your board law and rules, boards have discretion in interpreting their LPC licensing requirements. So you may able to obtain an LPC with a School Counseling Degree. This also in part depends upon your post masters work experience.
In some states LPCs may perform psychological testing. Psychologists have tended to block master’s level therapists from psychological testing. The primary reason is that, understandably, it is the remaining stronghold for psychologists scope of practice. Master’s level licensed mental health professionals can deliver virtually any type of therapy provided they have the appropriate training.
Your ethical decisions should be based upon some form of analytical ethical decision making model. At minimum, you should understand how to dissect your ethical dilemmas and clearly define them. For example, you may find that your advocacy work, though well intended, may result in a boundary crossing or dual relationship. Such is true in the case of advocating for your client with their employer. Often the very nature of an employer/employee relationship is adversarial. These scenarios can result in poor outcomes including board complaints and civil suits. Objectively review your scenario and consult with a peer.
In the vast majority of states LPCs can diagnose mental illness. Where states depart from each other is whether provisionally licensed counselors can diagnose. In Georgia, both APCs and LPCs can legally diagnose. Check with your state. The answer is likely clearly spelled out in that counseling board’s rules.
No. Reciprocity is quite different from endorsement. Reciprocity is a written formal agreement between two or more states to recognize the other’s licenses. Endorsement is the most common route to becoming licensed in another state. In fact, very few states have reciprocal agreements. Many states use the term “reciprocity” in their LPC licensing requirements rules, but that is a misnomer.
The two most common definitions of ‘qualified supervisor’ is they have either been formally approved by the state board or the supervisor has met certain requirements under state rules. For example, in Georgia a supervisor must have a minimum 3 years post licensure experience and hold a third-party credential. The LPC supervision credentials accepted by Georgia’s board is either the NBCC Approved Clinical Supervisor or LPCA of GA CPCS credential. On the other hand, the Virginia Board of Counseling has an Approved Supervisor Registry. The definition of ‘qualified supervisors’ for each state differs.
Very few states have LPC endorsement. Kentucky, Ohio and Tennessee have true reciprocal agreements.
Georgia issues LPC licenses by endorsement. You must complete the application for a Georgia LPC License By Endorsement. You must demonstrate that you have met equivalent requirements for your home state license.