Protecting the Public
I wanted to thank you for writing such an interesting article in the November issue of Counseling Today regarding Life Coaches. I am a recent graduate in Community Counseling and just passed the LPC exam.
For example, there is a guy in Dallas who is top listed on Google for Hypnotherapy.
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Thank you so much for reading, and for your comments about, my column!
The issue of licensure you describe is complicated, evolving all the time, and differs by state.
In Massachusetts, where my practice was founded, the term “Mental Health Counseling” is regulated. However, other terms, such as “psychotherapy” and “counseling” have not always been regulated. Note: they might be now, but in my discussions with the board of licensure in the mid 2000s there were not regulated.
However, regardless of the title one is using, they might still be in violation of laws for practicing medicine, or psychology / mental health services, without a license. It seems the person you’re citing is claiming to treat additions, depression, etc…. I’m not sure about your local laws, but it seems such claims might very well might cross the line in your state.
If you’re trying to practice in the same marketplace, I think that a good approach for you and other licensed mental health professionals (counselors, social workers, psychologists) is to emphasize your strengths to potential clients. This might include:
1 – Showing the difference in caliber of education and licensure you possess
2 – Being eligible to accept clients’ insurance (which unlicensed providers can’t do)
3 – Patient/Client Privilege — The legal protection of client privacy licensed counselors have, but others don’t.
Jeremy, I hope this helps!!
Dr. Anthony Centore