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Professional Ethics

Professional Law and Ethics encompasses a wide range of rules, regulations, codes, and laws that define the standard of what is appropriate professional practice. The standards come from many sources... more
Professional Law and Ethics encompasses a wide range of rules, regulations, codes, and laws that define the standard of what is appropriate professional practice. The standards come from many sources. They may include state and federal laws, professional ethics codes, workplace policies, and common practice among professionals. The purpose of Professional Law and Ethics is to protect the safety and welfare of clients, patients, clinicians, and the general public.
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Questions and Answers

Frank Walker
Frank Walker
I help couples manage the bumpy road called marriage. Whether your marriage needs a tune up, a major overhaul or just a flat tire changed. I can help.

From the very beginning of counseling sessions I emphasize that the work will and must end at some point.In counseling there is an arc to the process. A beginning, middle and end. I am always digging, searching and exploring. There comes a point where things come to there natural ending.I always... more

The information above is intended as general information...  (more)The information above is intended as general information based on minimal information, and does not constitute health care advice. This information does not constitute communication with a counselor/therapist nor does it create a therapist-client relationship nor any of the privileges that relationship may provide. If you are currently feeling suicidal or are in crisis, call 911 or proceed to your local emergency room.
Kristi King-Morgan, LMSW
Kristi King-Morgan, LMSW
Social Worker, Psychotherapist

I will admit I am confused about this question. Are you the other parent in question or a concerned coworker of this therapist? Therapists do not prescribe or have access to medication. Most therapists won't even get involved in a custody battle. They know there is a good chance of their records... more

Eric Ström, JD, MA, LMHC
Eric Ström, JD, MA, LMHC
Attorney & Licensed Mental Health Counselor

This sounds like a potentially serious situation. The most important thing is to make sure the child is safe. If you suspect that a child is (or has been) harmed, I would strongly recommend that you report your concerns to your local law enforcement or to Child Protective Services. If you don't... more

The information above is intended as general information...  (more)The information above is intended as general information based on minimal information, and does not constitute health care nor legal advice. This information does not constitute communication with a counselor/therapist/attorney nor does it create a therapist-client nor attorney-client relationship nor any of the privileges that relationship may provide. If you are currently feeling suicidal or are in crisis, call 911 or proceed to your local emergency room.
Lola Georg
Lola Georg
www.GeorgAssociates.com

I don't think it's appropriate to give your counselor a bottle of wine. Your counselor helped you and supported you, which is great, But a gift is inappropriate. I can understand that you want to show your gratitude. There are many other ways to do that. You could drop your counselor a note or card... more

The information above is intended as general information...  (more)The information above is intended as general information based on minimal information, and does not constitute health care advice. This information does not constitute communication with a counselor/therapist nor does it create a therapist-client relationship nor any of the privileges that relationship may provide.   If you are currently feeling suicidal or are in crisis, call 911 or proceed to your local emergency room.
Robin Landwehr, DBH, LPCC, NCC
Robin Landwehr, DBH, LPCC, NCC
Mental Health in a Primary Care Setting

Hello, and thank you for your question. I know that workplaces have some latitude when it comes to requiring certain behaviors from their employees. For example, they may require you to tell them if you get into some kind of legal trouble. But this situation seems completely different. For one thing... more

The information above is intended as general information...  (more)The information above is intended as general information based on minimal information, and does not constitute health care advice. This information does not constitute communication with a counselor/therapist nor does it create a therapist-client relationship nor any of the privileges that relationship may provide. If you are currently feeling suicidal or are in crisis, call 911 or proceed to your local emergency room.
Eric Ström, JD, MA, LMHC
Eric Ström, JD, MA, LMHC
Attorney & Licensed Mental Health Counselor

I'm sorry to hear about that situation. If the woman was your therapist (or had been at one time), this could represent a significant ethical violation when she created a dual relationship with you.Even if you were not her client, this might still be an ethical violation. Counselors are held to a... more

The information above is intended as general information...  (more)The information above is intended as general information based on minimal information, and does not constitute health care nor legal advice. This information does not constitute communication with a counselor/therapist/attorney nor does it create a therapist-client nor attorney-client relationship nor any of the privileges that relationship may provide. If you are currently feeling suicidal or are in crisis, call 911 or proceed to your local emergency room.
Eric Ström, JD, MA, LMHC
Eric Ström, JD, MA, LMHC
Attorney & Licensed Mental Health Counselor

I see a few issues here:First, the age of the child is important. If the child is considered an "adult" by state law with regard to counseling (states differ on this - the range is typically between age 13 and age 18), no one is allowed to be in the session without the child's consent.Second... more

The information above is intended as general information...  (more)The information above is intended as general information based on minimal information, and does not constitute health care nor legal advice. This information does not constitute communication with a counselor/therapist/attorney nor does it create a therapist-client nor attorney-client relationship nor any of the privileges that relationship may provide. If you are currently feeling suicidal or are in crisis, call 911 or proceed to your local emergency room.
Eric Ström, JD, MA, LMHC
Eric Ström, JD, MA, LMHC
Attorney & Licensed Mental Health Counselor

Mental health providers should promptly return calls from current clients as well as from potential clients. This is even true if the social worker (or counselor) is unable to make an appointment with the caller. In that case the social worker should call you back to let you know that he is unable... more

The information above is intended as general information...  (more)The information above is intended as general information based on minimal information, and does not constitute health care nor legal advice. This information does not constitute communication with a counselor/therapist/attorney nor does it create a therapist-client nor attorney-client relationship nor any of the privileges that relationship may provide. If you are currently feeling suicidal or are in crisis, call 911 or proceed to your local emergency room.
Sherry Katz, LCSW
Sherry Katz, LCSW
Couples and Family Therapist, LCSW

Yes, your former social worker should return your phone call.It is the professional ethic to do so and plain human decency to do so.If he doesn't, there is nothing you can directly do about the fact of his ignoring you.There are formal complaints you can make, which you can consider doing.What... more

The information above is intended as general information...  (more)The information above is intended as general information based on minimal information, and does not constitute health care advice. This information does not constitute communication with a counselor/therapist nor does it create a therapist-client relationship nor any of the privileges that relationship may provide. If you are currently feeling suicidal or are in crisis, call 911 or proceed to your local emergency room.
Eric Ström, JD, MA, LMHC
Eric Ström, JD, MA, LMHC
Attorney & Licensed Mental Health Counselor

I'm so sorry to hear of your loss. This sounds like a really difficult situation for the whole family. Since the answer to this question will depend a lot on the applicable state laws, I would suggest talking with a local attorney. That being said, I see two competing issues here. On the one... more

The information above is intended as general information...  (more)The information above is intended as general information based on minimal information, and does not constitute health care nor legal advice. This information does not constitute communication with a counselor/therapist/attorney nor does it create a therapist-client nor attorney-client relationship nor any of the privileges that relationship may provide. If you are currently feeling suicidal or are in crisis, call 911 or proceed to your local emergency room.