Counselors practicing counseling for a fee must be registered or certified with the Department of Health for the protection of public health and safety. Registration of an individual with the Department does not include recognition of any practice nor necessarily implies the effectiveness of any treatment [WAC246-810-031].
The Counselor Credentialing Act is to provide protection for public health and safety and to empower the citizens of the State of Washington by providing a complaint process against those counselor who commit acts of unprofessional conduct.
The code by which I am bound can be found in the Washington State Counselors Licensing Law [RCW: 18.19]. You may obtain additional information regarding these standards from the Washington State Department of Licensing or by calling 236.4700.
All information between a counselor and a client are strictly confidential. By law, information concerning our professional relationship can be released only with prior written consent from the client. Notable exceptions to confidentiality according to Washington State law include:
- Any communication that reveals the contemplation or commission of a crime or harmful act to self or others.
- Any information from my files that have been subpoenaed from a court of law.
- If the client is a minor, any information pertaining to the client having been the victim or subject of a crime may be shared in the course of inquiry about that crime.
- In the case of suspected child abuse or neglect I am obligated to report information to Child Protective Services.
The Personal Disclosure Form as well as the HIPAA Form will be available for you to review and sign during your first session.