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AB-2296 Licensed professional clinical counselors: licensed clinical social workers.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 06/13/2018 09:00 PM
AB2296:v95#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  June 13, 2018
Amended  IN  Assembly  April 26, 2018
Amended  IN  Assembly  April 10, 2018
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 23, 2018

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 2296


Introduced by Assembly Member Waldron

February 13, 2018


An act to amend Sections 2908, 2995, 4507, 4999.32, 4999.33, 4999.62, and 4999.63 of the Business and Professions Code, to amend Section 56.105 of the Civil Code, to amend Section 35160.5 of the Education Code, to amend Sections 3110.5, 7663, 7827, 7850, 7851, 8502, and 9001 of the Family Code, to amend Section 3209.8 of the Labor Code, and to amend Sections 18951 and 18961.7 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, relating to healing arts licensees.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 2296, as amended, Waldron. Licensed professional clinical counselors: licensed clinical social workers.
(1) The Psychology Licensing Law provides for the licensure and regulation of psychologists by the Board of Psychology and makes a violation of its provisions a crime. This law does not prevent qualified members of specified recognized professional groups from doing work of a psychological nature consistent with the law, as provided. This law describes a psychological corporation as a corporation that is authorized to render professional services if the corporation and its shareholders, officers, directors, and employees rendering professional services are specified healing arts licensees.
Existing law establishes the Board of Behavioral Sciences and makes it responsible for the licensure and regulation of marriage and family therapists, clinical social workers, professional clinical counselors, and educational psychologists.
This bill would list licensed professional clinical counselors as one of those recognized professional groups not prohibited from doing psychological work and would include a licensed professional clinical counselor as a healing arts licensee allowed to render services in a psychological corporation. By expanding the scope of a crime under the Psychology Licensing Law, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
(2) The Psychiatric Technicians Law requires the Board of Vocational Nursing and Psychiatric Technicians of the State of California, which is within the Department of Consumer Affairs, to license and regulate vocational nurses and psychiatric technicians.
This bill would provide that the Psychiatric Technicians Law does not apply to professional clinical counselors.
(3) Existing law requires an applicant seeking licensure as a professional clinical counselor to possess a degree that contains the equivalent of at least 3 semester units or 41/2 quarter units of graduate study in specified core content areas. Existing law allows an applicant whose degree is deficient in no more than 2 of the specified required areas of study to satisfy those deficiencies by successfully completing post-master’s or postdoctoral degree coursework, except that this option does not apply to the required areas of study relating to assessment, appraisal, and testing of individuals and principles of the diagnostic process.
This bill would instead require the equivalent of at least 3 semester units or 4 quarter units of graduate study in specified core content areas. The bill would allow an applicant whose application for licensure is received by the board on or before August 31, 2020, or whose application for registration was received by the board by that date and whose registration was subsequently issued to satisfy deficiencies in the required areas of study relating to assessment, appraisal, and testing of individuals and principles of the diagnostic process by completing post-master’s or postdoctoral degree coursework.
(4) The Confidentiality of Medical Information Act authorizes the disclosure of medical information to the person or organization insuring, responsible for, or defending professional liability that the specified healing arts licensee may incur. A violation of the act that results in economic loss or personal injury to a patient is punishable as a crime.
This bill would expand this provision to include licensed clinical social workers and licensed professional clinical counselors. By expanding the scope of a crime under the act, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
(5) Existing law requires the governing board of a school district to establish an open enrollment policy within the district, as specified, as a condition of receiving certain school apportionments from the State School Fund. Under existing law, the open enrollment policy may provide that special circumstances may exist that might be harmful or dangerous to a pupil in his or her current attendance area. A finding of these special circumstances may be based on a written statement from, among others, specified licensed or registered professionals.
This bill would additionally authorize a finding of special circumstances to be based on a written statement from a licensed professional clinical counselor.
(6) Existing law sets forth the qualifications for a court-connected or private child custody evaluator. Under existing law, in addition to specified education, experience, and training requirements, a person may be a child custody evaluator only if he or she meets one of specified licensure or certification criteria. Existing law requires a child custody evaluator to declare under penalty of perjury that he or she meets specified education, experience, training, and licensing requirements, as specified.
This bill would additionally authorize a licensed professional clinical counselor who is qualified to assess couples and families and who meets the education, experience, and training requirements to be a child custody evaluator. The bill would require a licensed professional clinical counselor who is a child custody evaluator to make the above-described declaration under penalty of perjury. By expanding the crime of perjury, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
(7) Under existing law, for purposes of terminating parental rights in an adoption proceeding, a court is required to attempt to identify all alleged fathers and presumed parents by causing the mother and any other appropriate person to be questioned, in the case of a stepparent adoption, the licensed clinical social worker or licensed marriage and family therapist who is performing a specified written investigative report.
This bill would additionally authorize a licensed professional clinical counselor who is performing the investigative report to question the mother or other appropriate person under the above-described circumstances.
(8) Existing law authorizes a proceeding to be brought for the purpose of having a child under 18 years of age declared free from the custody and control of either or both parents under specified circumstances, including when the child’s parent or parents are mentally disabled and are likely to remain so in the foreseeable future. Under existing law, in support of a finding of mental disability, a court has discretion to call a licensed marriage and family therapist, or a licensed clinical social worker, with specified experience, in circumstances where the court determines that this testimony is in the best interests of the child and is warranted by the circumstances of the particular family or parenting issues involved.
This bill would additionally authorize the court to call a licensed professional clinical counselor to provide this testimony, as specified.
(9) Existing law authorizes a petition to be filed by an interested person, as defined, for an order or judgment declaring a child free from the custody and control of either or both parents under specified circumstances. Upon the filing of the petition, existing law requires the clerk of the court to notify one of specified agencies or appropriately licensed individuals to investigate the circumstances of the child and report to the court, as specified.
This bill would include a licensed professional clinical counselor as one of the individuals authorized to investigate the circumstances of the child in the above proceedings.
(10) Existing law defines an adoption service provider to include licensed or approved adoption agencies, as specified, and licensed clinical social workers and marriage and family therapists with a minimum of 5 years of experience providing professional social work or adoption casework services, as prescribed. Existing law requires a court, prior to granting or denying a stepparent adoption request, to review and consider a written investigative report, which may be completed by a licensed clinical social worker, a licensed marriage and family therapist, or a private licensed adoption agency, if the petitioner so elects.
This bill would expand the definition of an adoption service provider to include a licensed clinical professional counselor with similar qualifications. The bill would additionally authorize a petitioner in a stepparent adoption request to elect to have the investigative report completed by a licensed professional clinical counselor.
(11) Existing law relating to workers’ compensation provides that treatment reasonably required to cure or relieve the effects of an injury include the services of licensed marriage and family therapists and clinical social workers.
This bill would expand those provisions to include the services of licensed professional clinical counselors.
(12) Existing law establishes the Office of Child Abuse Prevention to plan, improve, develop, and carry out programs and activities relating to the prevention, identification, and treatment of child abuse and neglect. Existing law provides for multidisciplinary personnel in this regard as a team of 3 or more persons trained in the prevention, identification, management, or treatment of child abuse or neglect cases and who are qualified to provide a broad range of services related to child abuse or neglect. Existing law also authorizes a county to establish a child abuse multidisciplinary personnel team within the county to allow provider agencies to share confidential information in order for provider agencies to investigate reports of suspected child abuse or neglect made pursuant to specified provisions. These multidisciplinary entities are similarly defined to include, among others, psychiatrists, psychologists, marriage and family therapists, or other trained counseling personnel.
This bill would expand the definitions of multidisciplinary personnel and child abuse multidisciplinary personnel teams to specifically include clinical social workers and professional clinical counselors.
(13) The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YES  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 2908 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

2908.
 Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to prevent qualified members of other recognized professional groups licensed to practice in the State of California, such as, but not limited to, physicians, clinical social workers, educational psychologists, marriage and family therapists, licensed professional clinical counselors, optometrists, psychiatric technicians, or registered nurses, or attorneys admitted to the State Bar of California, or persons utilizing hypnotic techniques by referral from persons licensed to practice medicine, dentistry, or psychology, or persons utilizing hypnotic techniques which offer avocational or vocational self-improvement and do not offer therapy for emotional or mental disorders, or duly ordained members of the recognized clergy, or duly ordained religious practitioners from doing work of a psychological nature consistent with the laws governing their respective professions, provided they do not hold themselves out to the public by any title or description of services incorporating the words “psychological,” “psychologist,” “psychology,” “psychometrist,” “psychometrics,” or “psychometry,” or that they do not state or imply that they are licensed to practice psychology; except that persons licensed under Chapter 13.5 (commencing with Section 4989.10) of Division 2 may hold themselves out to the public as licensed educational psychologists.

SEC. 2.

 Section 2995 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

2995.
 A psychological corporation is a corporation that is authorized to render professional services, as defined in Section 13401 of the Corporations Code, so long as that corporation and its shareholders, officers, directors, and employees rendering professional services who are psychologists, podiatrists, registered nurses, optometrists, marriage and family therapists, licensed professional clinical counselors, licensed clinical social workers, chiropractors, acupuncturists, or physicians are in compliance with the Moscone-Knox Professional Corporation Act, this article, and all other statutes and regulations now or hereafter enacted or adopted pertaining to that corporation and the conduct of its affairs.

SEC. 3.

 Section 4507 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

4507.
 This chapter shall not apply to the following:
(a) Physicians and surgeons licensed pursuant to Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 2000) of Division 2.
(b) Psychologists licensed pursuant to Chapter 6.6 (commencing with Section 2900) of Division 2.
(c) Registered nurses licensed pursuant to Chapter 6 (commencing with Section 2700) of Division 2.
(d) Vocational nurses licensed pursuant to Chapter 6.5 (commencing with Section 2840) of Division 2.
(e) Social workers or clinical social workers licensed pursuant to Chapter 14 (commencing with Section 4991) of Division 2.
(f) Marriage and family therapists licensed pursuant to Chapter 13 (commencing with Section 4980) of Division 2.
(g) Professional clinical counselors licensed pursuant to Chapter 16 (commencing with Section 4999.10) of Division 2.
(h) Teachers credentialed pursuant to Article 1 (commencing with Section 44200) of Chapter 2 of Part 25 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Education Code.
(i) Occupational therapists as specified in Chapter 5.6 (commencing with Section 2570) of Division 2.
(j) Art therapists, dance therapists, music therapists, and recreation therapists, as defined in Division 5 (commencing with Section 70001) of Title 22 of the California Code of Regulations, who are personnel of health facilities licensed pursuant to Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 1250) of Division 2 of the Health and Safety Code.
(k) Any other categories of persons the board determines are entitled to exemption from this chapter because they have complied with other licensing provisions of this code or because they are deemed by statute or by regulations contained in the California Code of Regulations to be adequately trained in their respective occupations. The exemptions shall apply only to a given specialized area of training within the specific discipline for which the exemption is granted.

SEC. 4.

 Section 4999.32 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

4999.32.
 (a) This section shall apply to applicants for licensure or registration who begin graduate study before August 1, 2012, and complete that study on or before December 31, 2018. Those applicants may alternatively qualify under paragraph (2) of subdivision (a) of Section 4999.33.
(b) To qualify for licensure or registration, applicants shall possess a master’s or doctoral degree that is counseling or psychotherapy in content and that meets the requirements of this section, obtained from an accredited or approved institution, as defined in Section 4999.12. For purposes of this subdivision, a degree is “counseling or psychotherapy in content” if it contains the supervised practicum or field study experience described in paragraph (3) of subdivision (c) and, except as provided in subdivision (d), the coursework in the core content areas listed in subparagraphs (A) to (I), inclusive, of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c).
(c) The degree described in subdivision (b) shall contain not less than 48 graduate semester or 72 graduate quarter units of instruction, which shall, except as provided in subdivision (d), include all of the following:
(1) The equivalent of at least three semester units or four quarter units of graduate study in each of the following core content areas:
(A) Counseling and psychotherapeutic theories and techniques, including the counseling process in a multicultural society, an orientation to wellness and prevention, counseling theories to assist in selection of appropriate counseling interventions, models of counseling consistent with current professional research and practice, development of a personal model of counseling, and multidisciplinary responses to crises, emergencies, and disasters.
(B) Human growth and development across the lifespan, including normal and abnormal behavior and an understanding of developmental crises, disability, psychopathology, and situational and environmental factors that affect both normal and abnormal behavior.
(C) Career development theories and techniques, including career development decisionmaking models and interrelationships among and between work, family, and other life roles and factors, including the role of multicultural issues in career development.
(D) Group counseling theories and techniques, including principles of group dynamics, group process components, developmental stage theories, therapeutic factors of group work, group leadership styles and approaches, pertinent research and literature, group counseling methods, and evaluation of effectiveness.
(E) Assessment, appraisal, and testing of individuals, including basic concepts of standardized and nonstandardized testing and other assessment techniques, norm-referenced and criterion-referenced assessment, statistical concepts, social and cultural factors related to assessment and evaluation of individuals and groups, and ethical strategies for selecting, administering, and interpreting assessment instruments and techniques in counseling.
(F) Multicultural counseling theories and techniques, including counselors’ roles in developing cultural self-awareness, identity development, promoting cultural social justice, individual and community strategies for working with and advocating for diverse populations, and counselors’ roles in eliminating biases and prejudices, and processes of intentional and unintentional oppression and discrimination.
(G) Principles of the diagnostic process, including differential diagnosis, and the use of current diagnostic tools, such as the current edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, the impact of co-occurring substance use disorders or medical psychological disorders, established diagnostic criteria for mental or emotional disorders, and the treatment modalities and placement criteria within the continuum of care.
(H) Research and evaluation, including studies that provide an understanding of research methods, statistical analysis, the use of research to inform evidence-based practice, the importance of research in advancing the profession of counseling, and statistical methods used in conducting research, needs assessment, and program evaluation.
(I) Professional orientation, ethics, and law in counseling, including professional ethical standards and legal considerations, licensing law and process, regulatory laws that delineate the profession’s scope of practice, counselor-client privilege, confidentiality, the client dangerous to self or others, treatment of minors with or without parental consent, relationship between practitioner’s sense of self and human values, functions and relationships with other human service providers, strategies for collaboration, and advocacy processes needed to address institutional and social barriers that impede access, equity, and success for clients.
(2) In addition to the course requirements described in paragraph (1), a minimum of 12 semester units or 18 quarter units of advanced coursework to develop knowledge of specific treatment issues, special populations, application of counseling constructs, assessment and treatment planning, clinical interventions, therapeutic relationships, psychopathology, or other clinical topics.
(3) Not less than six semester units or nine quarter units of supervised practicum or field study experience that involves direct client contact in a clinical setting that provides a range of professional clinical counseling experience, including the following:
(A) Applied psychotherapeutic techniques.
(B) Assessment.
(C) Diagnosis.
(D) Prognosis.
(E) Treatment.
(F) Issues of development, adjustment, and maladjustment.
(G) Health and wellness promotion.
(H) Other recognized counseling interventions.
(I) A minimum of 150 hours of face-to-face supervised clinical experience counseling individuals, families, or groups.
(d) (1) (A) An applicant whose degree is deficient in no more than two of the required areas of study listed in subparagraphs (A) to (I), inclusive, of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) may satisfy those deficiencies by successfully completing post-master’s or postdoctoral degree coursework at an accredited or approved institution, as defined in Section 4999.12.
(B) Notwithstanding subparagraph (A), an applicant shall not be deficient in the required areas of study specified in subparagraphs (E) or (G) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) unless the applicant meets one of the following criteria and remediates the deficiency:
(i) The application for licensure was received by the board on or before August 31, 2020.
(ii) The application for registration was received by the board on or before August 31, 2020, and the registration was subsequently issued by the board.
(2) Coursework taken to meet deficiencies in the required areas of study listed in subparagraphs (A) to (I), inclusive, of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) shall be the equivalent of three semester units or four quarter units of study.
(3) The board shall make the final determination as to whether a degree meets all requirements, including, but not limited to, course requirements, regardless of accreditation.
(e) In addition to the degree described in this section, or as part of that degree, an applicant shall complete the following coursework or training prior to registration as an associate:
(1) A minimum of 15 contact hours of instruction in alcoholism and other chemical substance abuse dependency, as specified by regulation.
(2) A minimum of 10 contact hours of training or coursework in human sexuality as specified in Section 25, and any regulations promulgated thereunder.
(3) A two semester unit or three quarter unit survey course in psychopharmacology.
(4) A minimum of 15 contact hours of instruction in spousal or partner abuse assessment, detection, and intervention strategies, including knowledge of community resources, cultural factors, and same gender abuse dynamics.
(5) A minimum of seven contact hours of training or coursework in child abuse assessment and reporting as specified in Section 28 and any regulations adopted thereunder.
(6) A minimum of 18 contact hours of instruction in California law and professional ethics for professional clinical counselors that includes, but is not limited to, instruction in advertising, scope of practice, scope of competence, treatment of minors, confidentiality, dangerous clients, psychotherapist-client privilege, recordkeeping, client access to records, dual relationships, child abuse, elder and dependent adult abuse, online therapy, insurance reimbursement, civil liability, disciplinary actions and unprofessional conduct, ethics complaints and ethical standards, termination of therapy, standards of care, relevant family law, therapist disclosures to clients, and state and federal laws related to confidentiality of patient health information. When coursework in a master’s or doctoral degree program is acquired to satisfy this requirement, it shall be considered as part of the 48 semester unit or 72 quarter unit requirement in subdivision (c).
(7) A minimum of 10 contact hours of instruction in aging and long-term care, which may include, but is not limited to, the biological, social, and psychological aspects of aging. On and after January 1, 2012, this coursework shall include instruction on the assessment and reporting of, as well as treatment related to, elder and dependent adult abuse and neglect.
(8) A minimum of 15 contact hours of instruction in crisis or trauma counseling, including multidisciplinary responses to crises, emergencies, or disasters, and brief, intermediate, and long-term approaches.
(f) This section shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2019, and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute that is enacted before January 1, 2019, deletes or extends that date.

SEC. 5.

 Section 4999.33 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

4999.33.
 (a) This section shall apply to the following:
(1) Applicants for licensure or registration who begin graduate study before August 1, 2012, and do not complete that study on or before December 31, 2018.
(2) Applicants for licensure or registration who begin graduate study before August 1, 2012, and who graduate from a degree program that meets the requirements of this section.
(3) Applicants for licensure or registration who begin graduate study on or after August 1, 2012.
(b) To qualify for licensure or registration, applicants shall possess a master’s or doctoral degree that is counseling or psychotherapy in content and that meets the requirements of this section, obtained from an accredited or approved institution, as defined in Section 4999.12. For purposes of this subdivision, a degree is “counseling or psychotherapy in content” if it contains the supervised practicum or field study experience described in paragraph (3) of subdivision (c) and, except as provided in subdivision (f), the coursework in the core content areas listed in subparagraphs (A) to (M), inclusive, of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c).
(c) The degree described in subdivision (b) shall contain not less than 60 graduate semester units or 90 graduate quarter units of instruction, which shall, except as provided in subdivision (f), include all of the following:
(1) The equivalent of at least three semester units or four quarter units of graduate study in all of the following core content areas:
(A) Counseling and psychotherapeutic theories and techniques, including the counseling process in a multicultural society, an orientation to wellness and prevention, counseling theories to assist in selection of appropriate counseling interventions, models of counseling consistent with current professional research and practice, development of a personal model of counseling, and multidisciplinary responses to crises, emergencies, and disasters.
(B) Human growth and development across the lifespan, including normal and abnormal behavior and an understanding of developmental crises, disability, psychopathology, and situational and environmental factors that affect both normal and abnormal behavior.
(C) Career development theories and techniques, including career development decisionmaking models and interrelationships among and between work, family, and other life roles and factors, including the role of multicultural issues in career development.
(D) Group counseling theories and techniques, including principles of group dynamics, group process components, group developmental stage theories, therapeutic factors of group work, group leadership styles and approaches, pertinent research and literature, group counseling methods, and evaluation of effectiveness.
(E) Assessment, appraisal, and testing of individuals, including basic concepts of standardized and nonstandardized testing and other assessment techniques, norm-referenced and criterion-referenced assessment, statistical concepts, social and cultural factors related to assessment and evaluation of individuals and groups, and ethical strategies for selecting, administering, and interpreting assessment instruments and techniques in counseling.
(F) Multicultural counseling theories and techniques, including counselors’ roles in developing cultural self-awareness, identity development, promoting cultural social justice, individual and community strategies for working with and advocating for diverse populations, and counselors’ roles in eliminating biases and prejudices, and processes of intentional and unintentional oppression and discrimination.
(G) Principles of the diagnostic process, including differential diagnosis, and the use of current diagnostic tools, such as the current edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, the impact of co-occurring substance use disorders or medical psychological disorders, established diagnostic criteria for mental or emotional disorders, and the treatment modalities and placement criteria within the continuum of care.
(H) Research and evaluation, including studies that provide an understanding of research methods, statistical analysis, the use of research to inform evidence-based practice, the importance of research in advancing the profession of counseling, and statistical methods used in conducting research, needs assessment, and program evaluation.
(I) Professional orientation, ethics, and law in counseling, including California law and professional ethics for professional clinical counselors, professional ethical standards and legal considerations, licensing law and process, regulatory laws that delineate the profession’s scope of practice, counselor-client privilege, confidentiality, the client dangerous to self or others, treatment of minors with or without parental consent, relationship between practitioner’s sense of self and human values, functions and relationships with other human service providers, strategies for collaboration, and advocacy processes needed to address institutional and social barriers that impede access, equity, and success for clients.
(J) Psychopharmacology, including the biological bases of behavior, basic classifications, indications, and contraindications of commonly prescribed psychopharmacological medications so that appropriate referrals can be made for medication evaluations and so that the side effects of those medications can be identified.
(K) Addictions counseling, including substance abuse, co-occurring disorders, and addiction, major approaches to identification, evaluation, treatment, and prevention of substance abuse and addiction, legal and medical aspects of substance abuse, populations at risk, the role of support persons, support systems, and community resources.
(L) Crisis or trauma counseling, including crisis theory; multidisciplinary responses to crises, emergencies, or disasters; cognitive, affective, behavioral, and neurological effects associated with trauma; brief, intermediate, and long-term approaches; and assessment strategies for clients in crisis and principles of intervention for individuals with mental or emotional disorders during times of crisis, emergency, or disaster.
(M) Advanced counseling and psychotherapeutic theories and techniques, including the application of counseling constructs, assessment and treatment planning, clinical interventions, therapeutic relationships, psychopathology, or other clinical topics.
(2) In addition to the course requirements described in paragraph (1), 15 semester units or 22.5 quarter units of advanced coursework to develop knowledge of specific treatment issues or special populations.
(3) Not less than six semester units or nine quarter units of supervised practicum or field study experience that involves direct client contact in a clinical setting that provides a range of professional clinical counseling experience, including the following:
(A) Applied psychotherapeutic techniques.
(B) Assessment.
(C) Diagnosis.
(D) Prognosis.
(E) Treatment.
(F) Issues of development, adjustment, and maladjustment.
(G) Health and wellness promotion.
(H) Professional writing including documentation of services, treatment plans, and progress notes.
(I) How to find and use resources.
(J) Other recognized counseling interventions.
(K) A minimum of 280 hours of face-to-face supervised clinical experience counseling individuals, families, or groups.
(d) The 60 graduate semester units or 90 graduate quarter units of instruction required pursuant to subdivision (c) shall, in addition to meeting the requirements of subdivision (c), include instruction in all of the following:
(1) The understanding of human behavior within the social context of socioeconomic status and other contextual issues affecting social position.
(2) The understanding of human behavior within the social context of a representative variety of the cultures found within California.
(3) Cultural competency and sensitivity, including a familiarity with the racial, cultural, linguistic, and ethnic backgrounds of persons living in California.
(4) An understanding of the effects of socioeconomic status on treatment and available resources.
(5) Multicultural development and cross-cultural interaction, including experiences of race, ethnicity, class, spirituality, sexual orientation, gender, and disability and their incorporation into the psychotherapeutic process.
(6) Case management, systems of care for the severely mentally ill, public and private services for the severely mentally ill, community resources for victims of abuse, disaster and trauma response, advocacy for the severely mentally ill, and collaborative treatment. The instruction required in this paragraph may be provided either in credit level coursework or through extension programs offered by the degree-granting institution.
(7) Human sexuality, including the study of the physiological, psychological, and social cultural variables associated with sexual behavior, gender identity, and the assessment and treatment of psychosexual dysfunction.
(8) Spousal or partner abuse assessment, detection, intervention strategies, and same gender abuse dynamics.
(9) A minimum of seven contact hours of training or coursework in child abuse assessment and reporting, as specified in Section 28, and any regulations promulgated thereunder.
(10) Aging and long-term care, including biological, social, cognitive, and psychological aspects of aging. This coursework shall include instruction on the assessment and reporting of, as well as treatment related to, elder and dependent adult abuse and neglect.
(e) A degree program that qualifies for licensure under this section shall do all of the following:
(1) Integrate the principles of mental health recovery-oriented care and methods of service delivery in recovery-oriented practice environments.
(2) Integrate an understanding of various cultures and the social and psychological implications of socioeconomic position.
(3) Provide the opportunity for students to meet with various consumers and family members of consumers of mental health services to enhance understanding of their experience of mental illness, treatment, and recovery.
(f) (1) (A) An applicant whose degree is deficient in no more than three of the required areas of study listed in subparagraphs (A) to (M), inclusive, of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) may satisfy those deficiencies by successfully completing post-master’s or postdoctoral degree coursework at an accredited or approved institution, as defined in Section 4999.12.
(B) Notwithstanding subparagraph (A), an applicant shall not be deficient in the required areas of study specified in subparagraphs (E) or (G) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) unless the applicant meets one of the following criteria and remediates the deficiency:
(i) The application for licensure was received by the board on or before August 31, 2020.
(ii) The application for registration was received by the board on or before August 31, 2020, and the registration was subsequently issued by the board.
(2) Coursework taken to meet deficiencies in the required areas of study listed in subparagraphs (A) to (M), inclusive, of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) shall be the equivalent of three semester units or four quarter units of study.
(3) The board shall make the final determination as to whether a degree meets all requirements, including, but not limited to, course requirements, regardless of accreditation.

SEC. 6.

 Section 4999.62 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

4999.62.
 (a) This section applies to persons who apply for licensure or registration on or after January 1, 2016, and who do not hold a license as described in Section 4999.60.
(b) For purposes of Section 4999.61, education is substantially equivalent if all of the following requirements are met:
(1) The degree is obtained from an accredited or approved institution, as defined in Section 4999.12, and consists of, at a minimum, the following:
(A) (i) For an applicant who obtained his or her degree within the timeline prescribed by subdivision (a) of Section 4999.33 the degree shall contain no less than 60 graduate semester units or 90 graduate quarter units of instruction.
(ii) Up to 12 semester units or 18 quarter units of instruction may be remediated, if missing from the degree. The remediation may occur while the applicant is registered as an associate.
(B) For an applicant who obtained his or her degree within the timeline prescribed by subdivision (a) of Section 4999.32 the degree shall contain no less than 48 graduate semester units or 72 graduate quarter units of instruction.
(C) Six semester units or nine quarter units of practicum, including, but not limited to, a minimum of 280 hours of face-to-face supervised clinical experience counseling individuals, families, or groups.
(D) The required areas of study listed in subparagraphs (A) to (M), inclusive, of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) of Section 4999.33.
(i) (I) An applicant whose degree is deficient in no more than six of the required areas of study listed in subparagraphs (A) to (M), inclusive, of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) of Section 4999.33 may satisfy those deficiencies by successfully completing graduate level coursework at an accredited or approved institution, as defined in Section 4999.12. Coursework taken to meet any deficiencies shall be the equivalent of three semester units or four quarter units of study.
(II) Notwithstanding subclause (I), no applicant shall be deficient in the required areas of study specified in subparagraph (E) or (G) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) of Section 4999.33.
(ii) An applicant who completed a course in professional orientation, ethics, and law in counseling as required by subparagraph (I) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) of Section 4999.33 that did not contain instruction in California law and ethics shall complete an 18-hour course in California law and professional ethics that includes, but is not limited to, instruction in advertising, scope of practice, scope of competence, treatment of minors, confidentiality, dangerous clients, psychotherapist-client privilege, recordkeeping, client access to records, state and federal laws relating to confidentiality of patient health information, dual relationships, child abuse, elder and dependent adult abuse, online therapy, insurance reimbursement, civil liability, disciplinary actions and unprofessional conduct, ethics complaints and ethical standards, termination of therapy, standards of care, relevant family law, and therapist disclosures to clients. An applicant shall complete this coursework prior to registration as an associate.
(iii) An applicant who has not completed a course in professional orientation, ethics, and law in counseling as required by subparagraph (I) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) of Section 4999.33 shall complete this required coursework, including content in California law and ethics. An applicant shall complete this coursework prior to registration as an associate.
(2) The applicant completes any units required by subdivision (c) of Section 4999.33 not already completed in his or her education as follows:
(A) At least 15 semester units or 22.5 quarter units of advanced coursework to develop knowledge of specific treatment issues or special populations. This coursework is in addition to the course requirements described in subparagraph (D) of paragraph (1).
(B) Coursework shall be from an accredited or approved school, college, or university as defined in Section 4999.12.
(3) (A) The applicant completes the following coursework not already completed in his or her education:
(i) A minimum of 10 contact hours of training in human sexuality, as specified in Section 25 and any regulations promulgated thereunder, including the study of the physiological, psychological, and social cultural variables associated with sexual behavior, gender identity, and the assessment and treatment of psychosexual dysfunction.
(ii) A minimum of 15 contact hours of instruction in spousal or partner abuse assessment, detection, intervention strategies, and same-gender abuse dynamics.
(iii) A minimum of seven contact hours of training or coursework in child abuse assessment and reporting as specified in Section 28 and any regulations promulgated thereunder.
(iv) A minimum of 10 contact hours of instruction in aging and long-term care, including biological, social, cognitive, and psychological aspects of aging. This coursework shall include instruction on the assessment and reporting of, as well as treatment related to, elder and dependent adult abuse and neglect.
(B) This coursework may be from an accredited or approved school, college, or university as defined in Section 4999.12, or from a continuing education provider that is acceptable to the board as defined in Section 4999.76. Undergraduate coursework shall not satisfy this requirement.
(4) The applicant completes the following coursework not already completed in his or her education from an accredited or approved school, college, or university as defined in Section 4999.12, or from a continuing education provider that is acceptable to the board as defined in Section 4999.76. Undergraduate coursework shall not satisfy this requirement.
(A) At least three semester units, or 45 hours, of instruction regarding the principles of mental health recovery-oriented care and methods of service delivery in recovery-oriented practice environments, including structured meetings with various consumers and family members of consumers of mental health services to enhance understanding of their experiences of mental illness, treatment, and recovery.
(B) At least one semester unit, or 15 hours, of instruction that includes an understanding of various California cultures and the social and psychological implications of socioeconomic position.
(5) An applicant may complete any units and course content requirements required under paragraph (2), (3), or (4) not already completed in his or her education while registered with the board as an associate.

SEC. 7.

 Section 4999.63 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

4999.63.
 (a) This section applies to persons who apply for licensure or registration on or after January 1, 2016, and who hold a license as described in Section 4999.60.
(b) For purposes of Section 4999.60, education is substantially equivalent if all of the following requirements are met:
(1) The degree is obtained from an accredited or approved institution, as defined in Section 4999.12, and consists of the following:
(A) (i) For an applicant who obtained his or her degree within the timeline prescribed by subdivision (a) of Section 4999.33 the degree shall contain no less than 60 graduate semester or 90 graduate quarter units of instruction.
(ii) Up to 12 semester units or 18 quarter units of instruction may be remediated, if missing from the degree. The remediation may occur while the applicant is registered as an associate.
(B) For an applicant who obtained his or her degree within the timeline prescribed by subdivision (a) of Section 4999.32 the degree shall contain no less than 48 graduate semester or 72 graduate quarter units of instruction.
(C) Six semester units or nine quarter units of practicum, including, but not limited to, a minimum of 280 hours of face-to-face supervised clinical experience counseling individuals, families, or groups.
(i) An applicant who has been licensed for at least two years in clinical practice, as verified by the board, is exempt from this requirement.
(ii) An out-of-state applicant who has been licensed for less than two years in clinical practice, as verified by the board, who does not meet the practicum requirement, shall remediate the requirement by demonstrating completion of a total of 280 hours of face-to-face supervised clinical experience, as specified in subparagraph (K) of paragraph (3) of subdivision (c) of Section 4999.33. Any postdegree hours gained to meet this requirement are in addition to the 3,000 hours of experience required by this chapter, and shall be gained while the applicant is registered with the board as an associate.
(D) The required areas of study specified in subparagraphs (A) to (M), inclusive, of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) of Section 4999.33.
(i) (I) An applicant whose degree is deficient in no more than six of the required areas of study specified in subparagraphs (A) to (M), inclusive, of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) of Section 4999.33 may satisfy those deficiencies by successfully completing graduate level coursework at an accredited or approved institution, as defined in Section 4999.12. Coursework taken to meet any deficiencies shall be the equivalent of three semester units or four quarter units of study.
(II) Notwithstanding subclause (I), no applicant shall be deficient in the required areas of study specified in subparagraphs (E) or (G) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) of Section 4999.33.
(ii) An applicant who completed a course in professional orientation, ethics, and law in counseling as required by subparagraph (I) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) of Section 4999.33 that did not contain instruction in California law and ethics shall complete an 18-hour course in California law and professional ethics that includes, but is not limited to, instruction in advertising, scope of practice, scope of competence, treatment of minors, confidentiality, dangerous clients, psychotherapist-client privilege, recordkeeping, client access to records, state and federal laws relating to confidentiality of patient health information, dual relationships, child abuse, elder and dependent adult abuse, online therapy, insurance reimbursement, civil liability, disciplinary actions and unprofessional conduct, ethics complaints and ethical standards, termination of therapy, standards of care, relevant family law, and therapist disclosures to clients. An applicant shall complete this coursework prior to registration as an associate.
(iii) An applicant who has not completed a course in professional orientation, ethics, and law in counseling as required by subparagraph (I) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) of Section 4999.33 shall complete this required coursework, including content in California law and ethics. An applicant shall complete this coursework prior to registration as an associate.
(2) The applicant completes any units required under subdivision (c) of Section 4999.33 not already completed in his or her education as follows:
(A) At least 15 semester units or 22.5 quarter units of advanced coursework to develop knowledge of specific treatment issues or special populations. This coursework is in addition to the course requirements described in subparagraph (D) of paragraph (1).
(B) Coursework shall be from an accredited or approved school, college, or university as defined in Section 4999.12.
(3) The applicant completes the following coursework not already completed in his or her education:
(A) A minimum of 10 contact hours of training in human sexuality, as specified in Section 25 and any regulations promulgated thereunder, including the study of the physiological, psychological, and social cultural variables associated with sexual behavior, gender identity, and the assessment and treatment of psychosexual dysfunction.
(B) A minimum of 15 contact hours of instruction in spousal or partner abuse assessment, detection, intervention strategies, and same-gender abuse dynamics.
(C) A minimum of seven contact hours of training or coursework in child abuse assessment and reporting as specified in Section 28 and any regulations promulgated under that section.
(D) A minimum of 10 contact hours of instruction in aging and long-term care, including biological, social, cognitive, and psychological aspects of aging. This coursework shall include instruction on the assessment and reporting of, as well as treatment related to, elder and dependent adult abuse and neglect.
(E) This coursework may be from an accredited or approved school, college, or university as defined in Section 4999.12, or from a continuing education provider that is acceptable to the board as defined in Section 4999.76. Undergraduate coursework shall not satisfy this requirement.
(4) The applicant completes the following coursework not already completed in his or her education from an accredited or approved school, college, or university as defined in Section 4999.12, or from a continuing education provider that is acceptable to the board as defined in Section 4999.76. Undergraduate coursework shall not satisfy this requirement.
(A) At least three semester units or 45 hours of instruction regarding the principles of mental health recovery-oriented care and methods of service delivery in recovery-oriented practice environments, including structured meetings with various consumers and family members of consumers of mental health services to enhance understanding of their experience of mental illness, treatment, and recovery.
(B) At least one semester unit or 15 hours of instruction that includes an understanding of various California cultures and the social and psychological implications of socioeconomic position.
(5) An applicant may complete any units and course content requirements required by subparagraph (D) of paragraph (1) or paragraphs (2), (3), and (4) not already completed in his or her education while registered with the board as an associate, unless otherwise specified.

SEC. 8.

 Section 56.105 of the Civil Code is amended to read:

56.105.
 Whenever, prior to the service of a complaint upon a defendant in any action arising out of the professional negligence of a person holding a valid physician’s and surgeon’s certificate issued pursuant to Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 2000) of Division 2 of the Business and Professions Code, a person holding a valid license as a marriage and family therapist issued pursuant to Chapter 13 (commencing with Section 4980) of Division 2 of the Business and Professions Code, a person holding a valid license as a clinical social worker issued pursuant to Chapter 14 (commencing with Section 4991) of Division 2 of the Business and Professions Code, or a person holding a valid license as a professional clinical counselor issued pursuant to Chapter 16 (commencing with Section 4999.10) of Division 2 of the Business and Professions Code, a demand for settlement or offer to compromise is made on a patient’s behalf, the demand or offer shall be accompanied by an authorization to disclose medical information to persons or organizations insuring, responsible for, or defending professional liability that the certificate holder may incur. The authorization shall be in accordance with Section 56.11 and shall authorize disclosure of that information that is necessary to investigate issues of liability and extent of potential damages in evaluating the merits of the demand for settlement or offer to compromise.
Notice of any request for medical information made pursuant to an authorization as provided by this section shall be given to the patient or the patient’s legal representative. The notice shall describe the inclusive subject matter and dates of the materials requested and shall also authorize the patient or the patient’s legal representative to receive, upon request, copies of the information at his or her expense.
Nothing in this section shall be construed to waive or limit any applicable privileges set forth in the Evidence Code except for the disclosure of medical information subject to the patient’s authorization. Nothing in this section shall be construed as authorizing a representative of any person from whom settlement has been demanded to communicate in violation of the physician-patient privilege with a treating physician, or to communicate in violation of the psychotherapist-patient privilege with a treating licensed marriage and family therapist, licensed clinical social worker, or licensed professional clinical counselor, except for the medical information request.
The requirements of this section are independent of the requirements of Section 364 of the Code of Civil Procedure.

SEC. 9.

 Section 35160.5 of the Education Code is amended to read:

35160.5.
 (a) The governing board of a school district that maintains one or more schools containing any of grades 7 to 12, inclusive, as a condition for the receipt of inflation adjustments pursuant to Section 42238.02, as implemented by Section 42238.03, shall establish a school district policy regarding participation in extracurricular and cocurricular activities by pupils in grades 7 to 12, inclusive. The criteria, which shall be applied to extracurricular and cocurricular activities, shall ensure that pupil participation is conditioned upon satisfactory educational progress in the previous grading period.
(1) For purposes of this subdivision, “extracurricular activity” means a program that has all of the following characteristics:
(A) The program is supervised or financed by the school district.
(B) Pupils participating in the program represent the school district.
(C) Pupils exercise some degree of freedom in either the selection, planning, or control of the program.
(D) The program includes both preparation for performance and performance before an audience or spectators.
(2) For purposes of this subdivision, an “extracurricular activity” is not part of the regular school curriculum, is not graded, does not offer credit, and does not take place during classroom time.
(3) For purposes of this subdivision, a “cocurricular activity” is defined as a program that may be associated with the curriculum in a regular classroom.
(4) A teacher graded or required program or activity for a course that satisfies the entrance requirements for admission to the California State University or the University of California is not an extracurricular or cocurricular activity as defined by this section.
(5) For purposes of this subdivision, “satisfactory educational progress” shall include, but not necessarily be limited to, both of the following:
(A) Maintenance of minimum passing grades, which is defined as at least a 2.0 grade point average in all enrolled courses on a 4.0 scale.
(B) Maintenance of minimum progress toward meeting the high school graduation requirements prescribed by the governing board.
(6) For purposes of this subdivision, “previous grading period” does not include a grading period in which the pupil was not in attendance for all, or a majority of, the grading period due to absences excused by the school for reasons such as serious illness or injury, approved travel, or work. In that event, “previous grading period” is deemed to mean the grading period immediately prior to the grading period or periods excluded pursuant to this paragraph.
(7) A program that has, as its primary goal, the improvement of academic or educational achievements of pupils is not an extracurricular or cocurricular activity as defined by this section.
(8) The governing board of each school district may adopt, as part of its policy established pursuant to this subdivision, provisions that would allow a pupil who does not achieve satisfactory educational progress, as defined in paragraph (5), in the previous grading period to remain eligible to participate in extracurricular and cocurricular activities during a probationary period. The probationary period shall not exceed one semester in length, but may be for a shorter period of time, as determined by the governing board of the school district. A pupil who does not achieve satisfactory educational progress, as defined in paragraph (5), during the probationary period shall not be allowed to participate in extracurricular and cocurricular activities in the subsequent grading period.
(9) This subdivision does not preclude the governing board of a school district from imposing a more stringent academic standard than that imposed by this subdivision. If the governing board of a school district imposes a more stringent academic standard, the governing board shall establish the criteria for participation in extracurricular and cocurricular activities at a meeting open to the public pursuant to Section 35145.
(10) The governing board of each school district annually shall review the school district policies adopted pursuant to the requirements of this section.
(b) (1) On or before July 1, 1994, the governing board of each school district, as a condition for the receipt of school apportionments from the state school fund, shall adopt rules and regulations establishing a policy of open enrollment within the district for residents of the district. This requirement does not apply to a school district that has only one school or a school district with schools that do not serve any of the same grade levels.
(2) The policy shall include all of the following elements:
(A) It shall provide that the parent or guardian of each schoolage child who is a resident in the district may select the schools the child shall attend, irrespective of the particular locations of his or her residence within the district, except that school districts shall retain the authority to maintain appropriate racial and ethnic balances among their respective schools at the school districts’ discretion or as specified in applicable court-ordered or voluntary desegregation plans.
(B) It shall include a selection policy for a school that receives requests for admission in excess of the capacity of the school that ensures that selection of pupils to enroll in the school is made through a random, unbiased process that prohibits an evaluation of whether a pupil should be enrolled based upon his or her academic or athletic performance. The governing board of a school district shall calculate the capacity of the schools in the district for purposes of this subdivision in a nonarbitrary manner using pupil enrollment and available space. However, school districts may employ existing entrance criteria for specialized schools or programs if the criteria are uniformly applied to all applicants. This subdivision shall not be construed to prohibit school districts from using academic performance to determine eligibility for, or placement in, programs for gifted and talented pupils established pursuant to former Chapter 8 (commencing with Section 52200) of Part 28 of Division 4, as that chapter read on January 1, 2014.
(C) It shall provide that a pupil who currently resides in the attendance area of a school shall not be displaced by pupils transferring from outside the attendance area.
(3) Notwithstanding the requirement of subparagraph (B) of paragraph (2) that the policy include a selection policy for a school that receives requests for admission in excess of the capacity of the school that ensures that the selection is made through a random, unbiased process, the policy may include either of the following elements:
(A) (i) It may provide that special circumstances exist that might be harmful or dangerous to a particular pupil in the current attendance area of the pupil, including, but not necessarily limited to, threats of bodily harm or threats to the emotional stability of the pupil, that serve as a basis for granting a priority of attendance outside the current attendance area of the pupil. A finding of harmful or dangerous special circumstances shall be based upon either of the following:
(I) A written statement from a representative of the appropriate state or local agency, including, but not necessarily limited to, a law enforcement official or a social worker, or properly licensed or registered professionals, including, but not necessarily limited to, psychiatrists, psychologists, marriage and family therapists, clinical social workers, or professional clinical counselors.
(II) A court order, including a temporary restraining order and injunction, issued by a judge.
(ii) A finding of harmful or dangerous special circumstances pursuant to this subparagraph may be used by a school district to approve transfers within the district to schools that have been deemed by the school district to be at capacity and otherwise closed to transfers that are not based on harmful or dangerous special circumstances.
(B) It may provide that schools receiving requests for admission shall give priority for attendance to siblings of pupils already in attendance in that school and to pupils whose parent or legal guardian is assigned to that school as his or her primary place of employment.
(4) To the extent required and financed by federal law and at the request of the pupil’s parent or guardian, each school district shall provide transportation assistance to the pupil.

SEC. 10.

 Section 3110.5 of the Family Code is amended to read:

3110.5.
 (a) A person may be a court-connected or private child custody evaluator under this chapter only if the person has completed the domestic violence and child abuse training program described in Section 1816 and has complied with Rules 5.220 and 5.230 of the California Rules of Court.
(b) (1) On or before January 1, 2002, the Judicial Council shall formulate a statewide rule of court that establishes education, experience, and training requirements for all child custody evaluators appointed pursuant to this chapter, Section 730 of the Evidence Code, or Chapter 15 (commencing with Section 2032.010) of Title 4 of Part 4 of the Code of Civil Procedure.
(A) The rule shall require a child custody evaluator to declare under penalty of perjury that he or she meets all of the education, experience, and training requirements specified in the rule and, if applicable, possesses a license in good standing. The Judicial Council shall establish forms to implement this section. The rule shall permit court-connected evaluators to conduct evaluations if they meet all of the qualifications established by the Judicial Council. The education, experience, and training requirements to be specified for court-connected evaluators shall include, but not be limited to, knowledge of the psychological and developmental needs of children and parent-child relationships.
(B) The rule shall require all evaluators to utilize comparable interview, assessment, and testing procedures for all parties that are consistent with generally accepted clinical, forensic, scientific, diagnostic, or medical standards. The rule shall also require evaluators to inform each adult party of the purpose, nature, and method of the evaluation.
(C) The rule may allow courts to permit the parties to stipulate to an evaluator of their choosing with the approval of the court under the circumstances set forth in subdivision (d). The rule may require courts to provide general information about how parties can contact qualified child custody evaluators in their county.
(2) On or before January 1, 2004, the Judicial Council shall include in the statewide rule of court created pursuant to this section a requirement that all court-connected and private child custody evaluators receive training in the nature of child sexual abuse. The Judicial Council shall develop standards for this training that shall include, but not be limited to, the following:
(A) Children’s patterns of hiding and disclosing sexual abuse occurring in a family setting.
(B) The effects of sexual abuse on children.
(C) The nature and extent of child sexual abuse.
(D) The social and family dynamics of child sexual abuse.
(E) Techniques for identifying and assisting families affected by child sexual abuse.
(F) Legal rights, protections, and remedies available to victims of child sexual abuse.
(c) In addition to the education, experience, and training requirements established by the Judicial Council pursuant to subdivision (b), on or after January 1, 2005, a person may be a child custody evaluator under this chapter, Section 730 of the Evidence Code, or Chapter 15 (commencing with Section 2032.010) of Title 4 of Part 4 of the Code of Civil Procedure only if the person meets one of the following criteria:
(1) He or she is licensed as a physician under Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 2000) of Division 2 of the Business and Professions Code and either is a board certified psychiatrist or has completed a residency in psychiatry.
(2) He or she is licensed as a psychologist under Chapter 6.6 (commencing with Section 2900) of Division 2 of the Business and Professions Code.
(3) He or she is licensed as a marriage and family therapist under Chapter 13 (commencing with Section 4980) of Division 2 of the Business and Professions Code.
(4) He or she is licensed as a clinical social worker under Article 4 (commencing with Section 4996) of Chapter 14 of Division 2 of the Business and Professions Code.
(5) He or she is licensed as a professional clinical counselor under Chapter 16 (commencing with Section 4999.10) of Division 2 of the Business and Professions Code and is qualified to assess couples and families pursuant to paragraph (3) of subdivision (a) of Section 4999.20 of the Business and Professions Code.
(6) He or she is a court-connected evaluator who has been certified by the court as meeting all of the qualifications for court-connected evaluators as specified by the Judicial Council pursuant to subdivision (b).
(d) Subdivision (c) does not apply in a case in which the court determines that there are no evaluators who meet the criteria of subdivision (c) who are willing and available, within a reasonable period of time, to perform child custody evaluations. In those cases, the parties may stipulate to an individual who does not meet the criteria of subdivision (c), subject to approval by the court.
(e) A child custody evaluator who is licensed by the Medical Board of California, the Board of Psychology, or the Board of Behavioral Sciences shall be subject to disciplinary action by that board for unprofessional conduct, as defined in the licensing law applicable to that licensee.
(f) On or after January 1, 2005, a court-connected or private child custody evaluator may not evaluate, investigate, or mediate an issue of child custody in a proceeding pursuant to this division unless that person has completed child sexual abuse training as required by this section.

SEC. 11.

 Section 7663 of the Family Code is amended to read:

7663.
 (a) In an effort to identify all alleged fathers and presumed parents, the court shall cause inquiry to be made of the mother and any other appropriate person by one of the following:
(1) The State Department of Social Services.
(2) A licensed county adoption agency.
(3) The licensed adoption agency to which the child is to be relinquished.
(4) In the case of a stepparent adoption, the licensed clinical social worker, licensed marriage and family therapist, or licensed professional clinical counselor who is performing the investigation pursuant to Section 9001, if applicable. In the case of a stepparent adoption in which a licensed clinical social worker, licensed marriage and family therapist, or licensed professional clinical counselor is not performing the investigation pursuant to Section 9001, the board of supervisors may assign those inquiries to a licensed county adoption agency, the county department designated by the board of supervisors to administer the public social services program, or the county probation department.
(b) The inquiry shall include all of the following:
(1) Whether the mother was married at the time of conception of the child or at any time thereafter.
(2) Whether the mother was cohabiting with a man at the time of conception or birth of the child.
(3) Whether the mother has received support payments or promises of support with respect to the child or in connection with her pregnancy.
(4) Whether any person has formally or informally acknowledged or declared his or her possible parentage of the child.
(5) The names and whereabouts, if known, of every person presumed or man alleged to be the parent of the child, and the efforts made to give notice of the proposed adoption to each person identified.
(c) The agency that completes the inquiry shall file a written report of the findings with the court.

SEC. 12.

 Section 7827 of the Family Code is amended to read:

7827.
 (a) “Mentally disabled” as used in this section means that a parent or parents suffer a mental incapacity or disorder that renders the parent or parents unable to care for and control the child adequately.
(b) A proceeding under this part may be brought if the child is one whose parent or parents are mentally disabled and are likely to remain so in the foreseeable future.
(c) Except as provided in subdivision (d), the evidence of any two experts, each of whom shall be a physician and surgeon, certified either by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology or under Section 6750 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, a licensed psychologist who has a doctoral degree in psychology and at least five years of postgraduate experience in the diagnosis and treatment of emotional and mental disorders, is required to support a finding under this section. In addition to this requirement, the court shall have the discretion to call a licensed marriage and family therapist, a licensed professional clinical counselor, or a licensed clinical social worker, either of whom shall have at least five years of relevant postlicensure experience, in circumstances in which the court determines that this testimony is in the best interest of the child and is warranted by the circumstances of the particular family or parenting issues involved. However, the court may not call a licensed marriage and family therapist, licensed professional clinical counselor, or licensed clinical social worker pursuant to this section who is the adoption service provider, as defined in Section 8502, of the child who is the subject of the petition to terminate parental rights.
(d) If the parent or parents reside in another state or in a foreign country, the evidence required by this section may be supplied by the affidavits of two experts, each of whom shall be either of the following:
(1) A physician and surgeon who is a resident of that state or foreign country, and who has been certified by a medical organization or society of that state or foreign country to practice psychiatric or neurological medicine.
(2) A licensed psychologist who has a doctoral degree in psychology and at least five years of postgraduate experience in the diagnosis and treatment of emotional and mental disorders and who is licensed in that state or authorized to practice in that country.
(e) If the rights of a parent are sought to be terminated pursuant to this section, and the parent does not have an attorney, the court shall appoint an attorney for the parent pursuant to Article 4 (commencing with Section 7860) of Chapter 3, whether or not a request for the appointment is made by the parent.

SEC. 13.

 Section 7850 of the Family Code is amended to read:

7850.
 Upon the filing of a petition under Section 7841, the clerk of the court shall, in accordance with the direction of the court, immediately notify the juvenile probation officer, qualified court investigator, licensed clinical social worker, licensed marriage and family therapist, licensed professional clinical counselor, or the county department designated by the board of supervisors to administer the public social services program, who shall immediately investigate the circumstances of the child and the circumstances which are alleged to bring the child within any provision of Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 7820).

SEC. 14.

 Section 7851 of the Family Code is amended to read:

7851.
 (a) The juvenile probation officer, qualified court investigator, licensed clinical social worker, licensed marriage and family therapist, licensed professional clinical counselor, or the county department shall render to the court a written report of the investigation with a recommendation of the proper disposition to be made in the proceeding in the best interest of the child.
(b) The report shall include all of the following:
(1) A statement that the person making the report explained to the child the nature of the proceeding to end parental custody and control.
(2) A statement of the child’s feelings and thoughts concerning the pending proceeding.
(3) A statement of the child’s attitude towards the child’s parent or parents and particularly whether or not the child would prefer living with his or her parent or parents.
(4) A statement that the child was informed of the child’s right to attend the hearing on the petition and the child’s feelings concerning attending the hearing.
(c) If the age, or the physical, emotional, or other condition of the child precludes the child’s meaningful response to the explanations, inquiries, and information required by subdivision (b), a description of the condition shall satisfy the requirement of that subdivision.
(d) The court shall receive the report in evidence and shall read and consider its contents in rendering the court’s judgment.

SEC. 15.

 Section 8502 of the Family Code is amended to read:

8502.
 (a) “Adoption service provider” means any of the following:
(1) A licensed private adoption agency.
(2) An individual who has presented satisfactory evidence to the department that he or she is a licensed clinical social worker who also has a minimum of five years of experience providing professional social work services while employed by a licensed California adoption agency or the department.
(3) In a state other than California, or a country other than the United States, an adoption agency licensed or otherwise approved under the laws of that state or country, or an individual who is licensed or otherwise certified as a clinical social worker under the laws of that state or country.
(4) An individual who has presented satisfactory evidence to the department that he or she is a licensed marriage and family therapist who has a minimum of five years of experience providing professional adoption casework services while employed by a licensed California adoption agency or the department. The department shall review the qualifications of each individual to determine if he or she has performed professional adoption casework services for five years as required by this section while employed by a licensed California adoption agency or the department.
(5) An individual who has presented satisfactory evidence to the department that he or she is a licensed professional clinical counselor who has a minimum of five years’ experience providing professional adoption casework services while employed by a licensed California adoption agency or the department. The department shall review the credentials of each individual to determine if he or she has performed professional adoption casework services as required by this paragraph.
(b) If, in the case of a birth parent located in California, at least three adoption service providers are not reasonably available, or, in the case of a birth parent located outside of California or outside of the United States who has contacted at least three potential adoption service providers and been unsuccessful in obtaining the services of an adoption service provider who is reasonably available and willing to provide services, independent legal counsel for the birth parent may serve as an adoption service provider pursuant to subdivision (e) of Section 8801.5. “Reasonably available” means that an adoption service provider is all of the following:
(1) Available within five days for an advisement of rights pursuant to Section 8801.5, or within 24 hours for the signing of the placement agreement pursuant to paragraph (3) of subdivision (b) of Section 8801.3.
(2) Within 100 miles of the birth mother.
(3) Available for a cost not exceeding five hundred dollars ($500) to make an advisement of rights and to witness the signing of the placement agreement.
(c) If an attorney acts as an adoption service provider, the fee to make an advisement of rights and to witness the signing of the placement agreement shall not exceed five hundred dollars ($500).

SEC. 16.

 Section 9001 of the Family Code is amended to read:

9001.
 (a) Except as provided in Section 9000.5, before granting or denying a stepparent adoption request, the court shall review and consider a written investigative report. The report in a stepparent adoption case shall not require a home study unless so ordered by the court upon request of an investigator or interested person, or on the court’s own motion. “Home study” as used in this section means a physical investigation of the premises where the child is residing.
(b) At the time of filing the adoption request, the petitioner shall inform the court in writing if the petitioner is electing to have the investigation and written report completed by a licensed clinical social worker, a licensed marriage and family therapist, a licensed professional clinical counselor, or a private licensed adoption agency, in which cases the petitioner shall not be required to pay an investigation fee pursuant to Section 9002 at the time of filing, but shall pay these fees directly to the investigator. Absent that notification, the court may, at the time of filing, collect an investigation fee pursuant to Section 9002, and may assign one of the following to complete the investigation: a probation officer, a qualified court investigator, or the county welfare department, if so authorized by the board of supervisors of the county where the action is pending.
(c) If a private licensed adoption agency conducts the investigation, it shall assign the investigation to a licensed clinical social worker worker, licensed professional clinical counselor, or licensed marriage and family therapist associated with the agency. A grievance regarding the investigation shall be directed to the licensing authority of the clinical social worker, licensed professional clinical counselor, or marriage and family therapist, as applicable.
(d) This section does not require the State Department of Social Services to issue regulations for stepparent adoptions.

SEC. 17.

 Section 3209.8 of the Labor Code is amended to read:

3209.8.
 Treatment reasonably required to cure or relieve from the effects of an injury shall include the services of marriage and family therapists, professional clinical counselors, and clinical social workers licensed by California state law and within the scope of their practice as defined by California state law if the injured person is referred to the marriage and family therapist, the professional clinical counselor, or the clinical social worker by a licensed physician and surgeon, with the approval of the employer, for treatment of a condition arising out of the injury. This section does not authorize marriage and family therapists, professional clinical counselors, or clinical social workers to determine disability for the purposes of Article 3 (commencing with Section 4650) of Chapter 2 of Part 2. The requirement of this section that the employer approve the referral by a licensed physician or surgeon shall not be construed to preclude reimbursement for self-procured treatment, found by the appeals board to be otherwise compensable pursuant to this division, if the employer has refused to authorize any treatment for the condition arising from the injury treated by the marriage and family therapist, professional clinical counselor, or clinical social worker.

SEC. 18.

 Section 18951 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is amended to read:

18951.
 As used in this chapter:
(a) “Child” means an individual under 18 years of age.
(b) “Child services” means services for or on behalf of children, and includes the following:
(1) Protective services.
(2) Caretaker services.
(3) Day care services, including dropoff care.
(4) Homemaker services or family aides.
(5) Counseling services.
(c) “Adult services” means services for or on behalf of a parent of a child, which shall include, but not be limited to, the following:
(1) Access to voluntary placement, long or short term.
(2) Counseling services before and after a crisis.
(3) Homemaker services or family aides.
(d) “Multidisciplinary personnel” means a team of three or more persons who are trained in the prevention, identification, management, or treatment of child abuse or neglect cases and who are qualified to provide a broad range of services related to child abuse or neglect. The team may include, but need not be limited to, any of the following:
(1) Psychiatrists, psychologists, marriage and family therapists, clinical social workers, professional clinical counselors, or other trained counseling personnel.
(2) Police officers or other law enforcement agents.
(3) Medical personnel with sufficient training to provide health services.
(4) Social workers with experience or training in child abuse prevention, identification, management, or treatment.
(5) A public or private school teacher, administrative officer, supervisor of child welfare and attendance, or certificated pupil personnel employee.
(6) A CalWORKs case manager whose primary responsibility is to provide cross program case planning and coordination of CalWORKs and child welfare services for those mutual cases or families that may be eligible for CalWORKs services and that, with the informed written consent of the family, receive cross program case planning and coordination.
(e) “Child abuse” as used in this chapter means a situation in which a child suffers from any one or more of the following:
(1) Serious physical injury inflicted upon the child by other than accidental means.
(2) Harm by reason of intentional neglect or malnutrition or sexual abuse.
(3) Going without necessary and basic physical care.
(4) Willful mental injury, negligent treatment, or maltreatment of a child under the age of 18 years by a person who is responsible for the child’s welfare under circumstances that indicate that the child’s health or welfare is harmed or threatened thereby, as determined in accordance with regulations prescribed by the Director of Social Services.
(5) Any condition that results in the violation of the rights or physical, mental, or moral welfare of a child or jeopardizes the child’s present or future health, opportunity for normal development, or capacity for independence.
(f) “Parent” means a person who exercises care, custody, and control of the child as established by law.

SEC. 19.

 Section 18961.7 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is amended to read:

18961.7.
 (a) Notwithstanding any other law, a county may establish a child abuse multidisciplinary personnel team within that county to allow provider agencies to share confidential information in order for provider agencies to investigate reports of suspected child abuse or neglect made pursuant to Section 11160, 11166, or 11166.05 of the Penal Code, or for the purpose of child welfare agencies making a detention determination.
(b) For the purposes of this section, the following terms shall have the following meanings:
(1) “Child abuse multidisciplinary personnel team” means a team of two or more persons who are trained in the prevention, identification, or treatment of child abuse and neglect cases and who are qualified to provide a broad range of services related to child abuse. The team may include, but shall not be limited to:
(A) Psychiatrists, psychologists, marriage and family therapists, clinical social workers, professional clinical counselors, or other trained counseling personnel.
(B) Police officers or other law enforcement agents.
(C) Medical personnel with sufficient training to provide health services.
(D) Social services workers with experience or training in child abuse prevention.
(E) A public or private school teacher, administrative officer, supervisor of child welfare attendance, or certified pupil personnel employee.
(2) “Provider agency” means a governmental or other agency that has as one of its purposes the prevention, identification, management, or treatment of child abuse or neglect. The provider agencies serving children and their families that may share information under this section shall include, but not be limited to, the following entities or service agencies:
(A) Social services.
(B) Children’s services.
(C) Health services.
(D) Mental health services.
(E) Probation.
(F) Law enforcement.
(G) Schools.
(c) (1) Notwithstanding Section 827 of the Welfare and Institutions Code or any other law, during a 30-day period, or longer if documented good cause exists, following a report of suspected child abuse or neglect, members of a child abuse multidisciplinary personnel team engaged in the prevention, identification, and treatment of child abuse may disclose to and exchange with one another information and writings that relate to any incident of child abuse that may also be designated as confidential under state law if the member of the team having that information or writing reasonably believes it is generally relevant to the prevention, identification, or treatment of child abuse. A discussion relative to the disclosure or exchange of the information or writings during a team meeting is confidential and, notwithstanding any other law, testimony concerning that discussion is not admissible in any criminal, civil, or juvenile court proceeding.
(2) Disclosure and exchange of information pursuant to this section may occur telephonically and electronically if there is adequate verification of the identity of the child abuse multidisciplinary personnel who are involved in that disclosure or exchange of information.
(3) Disclosure and exchange of information pursuant to this section shall not be made to anyone other than members of the child abuse multidisciplinary personnel team, and those qualified to receive information as set forth in subdivision (d).
(d) The child abuse multidisciplinary personnel team may designate persons qualified pursuant to paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) to be a member of the team for a particular case. A person designated as a team member pursuant to this subdivision may receive and disclose relevant information and records, subject to the confidentiality provisions of subdivision (f).
(e) The sharing of information permitted under subdivision (c) shall be governed by protocols developed in each county describing how and what information may be shared by the child abuse multidisciplinary personnel team to ensure that confidential information gathered by the team is not disclosed in violation of state or federal law. A copy of the protocols shall be distributed to each participating agency and to persons in those agencies who participate in the child abuse multidisciplinary personnel team.
(f) Every member of the child abuse multidisciplinary personnel team who receives information or records regarding children and families in his or her capacity as a member of the team shall be under the same privacy and confidentiality obligations and subject to the same confidentiality penalties as the person disclosing or providing the information or records. The information or records obtained shall be maintained in a manner that ensures the maximum protection of privacy and confidentiality rights.
(g) This section shall not be construed to restrict guarantees of confidentiality provided under state or federal law.
(h) Information and records communicated or provided to the team members by all providers and agencies, as well as information and records created in the course of a child abuse or neglect investigation, shall be deemed private and confidential and shall be protected from discovery and disclosure by all applicable statutory and common law protections. Existing civil and criminal penalties shall apply to the inappropriate disclosure of information held by the team members.

SEC. 20.

 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.