Georgia is not yet participating in the Counseling Compact. Georgia’s Composite Board of PC, SW and MFT was the first state to pass counseling legislation.
Georgia HB395 was signed into law by Governor Kemp on 5-10-2021. It is known as the “Professional Counselors Licensure Act“.
The organization behind this legislation was the Licensed Professional Counselors Association of Georgia and it’s lobbyists. And they did a great job.
But first, there are time consuming steps the board needs to take. Further there are additional Georgia Counseling laws that had to be amended.
And for now, you will need to get your LPC license in more states if you want to legally practice across state lines.
For example about one year later, Georgia HB 972 signed by Governor Kemp on 5/2/22 (now Act 813) changes LPC licensing requirements significantly and is unprecedented.
Why More GA Counseling Laws Need To Be Passed.
The Counseling Compact laws were created from a template drafted by the Compact Organization. Most state’s that now have compact law used this template almost verbatim including Georgia.
However, under the compact law, states including Georgia retain their rights to set licensing requirements.
A very important concept in order for this counseling compact to get off the ground is “Uniformity”. It is a term used in the Compact Organization template.
Why would two states have an interest in recognizing the other’s LPC license if their requirements aren’t at least roughly equivalent?
Georgia’s LPC / APC requirements differ widely from other states. But the same is true for other states: there is very little uniformity.
It is possible the current law will need to be amended again. Perhaps not.
At the very least, LPC licensing requirements rules will need to be modified to accommodate the new laws.
So this is why Georgia’s participating in the counseling compact will be a lengthy process.
Georgia's Participation in The Counseling Compact
What's Happening At The Moment in Georgia
Writing licensing requirements into rules has become urgent especially with the passing of the second law mentioned above.
This is partly related to the counseling compact though not entirely.
The LPC Law Changes and Writing of New Rules
Georgia’s Composite Board refers LPC license applicants to the rule for most everything related to LPC licensing. This includes continuing education requirements, avoiding Georgia counselor ethics violations and so on. “Please refer to composite board rule xx.xx” is the response to nearly every licensee question.
This is why it is so important for the board to finish writing and passing amended LPC rules. And this is happening as we speak. However, it could be months before these rules are passed.
So getting back to Georgia’s participating in the counseling compact–this is partly why it is taking so long.
…but most states are In. The Same. Boat.