The law protects the relationship between therapist and client and all communication within the context of the therapeutic relationship is confidential. Disclosure of your confidential information can only be made with your written permission and/or under the following circumstances:
- Abuse: Instances of actual or suspected physical or sexual abuse, emotional cruelty, or neglect of a child must be reported to child protective services. Instances of reported, observed or suspected elder or dependent adult must also be reported.
- Dangerousness: If I have reason to believe that you, as my client, pose an unavoidable and imminent danger of serious violence to another person, I am required to warn the individual in danger and the appropriate authorities.
- Risk to Self: If you, as a client, pose a serious intent toward self-injury, my professional ethics require that I do whatever I can to help keep you safe.
- Subpoena: Finally, if a court has ordered your treatment with me or if I am served with a subpoena (e.g., in the context of a legal proceeding in which you raise your own psychological state as an issue) I am required to release information to the court, or I may have to appear in court.