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SB-275 Board of Psychology: disciplinary action: sexual contact or sexual behavior with a client or former client.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 02/13/2020 09:00 PM
SB275:v97#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  February 13, 2020
Amended  IN  Assembly  January 06, 2020

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill
No. 275


Introduced by Senator Pan

February 13, 2019


An act to amend Section Sections 2960 and 2960.1 of the Business and Professions Code, relating to healing arts.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 275, as amended, Pan. Board of Psychology: disciplinary action: sexual contact or sexual behavior with a client or former client.
Existing law, the Psychology Licensing Law, requires the Board of Psychology to license and regulate the practice of psychology. The Psychology Licensing Law authorizes the board to refuse to issue a registration or license, to issue a registration or license with terms and conditions, or to revoke the registration or license if the applicant, registrant, or licensee has been guilty of unprofessional conduct, which includes an act of sexual abuse, or sexual relations with a patient or former patient within 2 years following termination of therapy, or sexual misconduct that is substantially related to the qualifications, functions, or duties of a psychologist, psychological assistant, or registered psychologist. The Psychology Licensing Law, as an exception to this authorizing provision, requires that an order of revocation of a registration or license be included in a specified administrative adjudication decision or proposed decision that contains a finding of fact that the licensee or registrant engaged in an act of sexual contact with a patient, or with a former patient within 2 years following termination of therapy. The Psychology Licensing Law defines “sexual contact” for this purpose to mean the touching, as defined, of an intimate part, as defined, of another person. The Psychology Licensing Law prohibits the administrative law judge from staying the revocation.
This bill bill, instead, would revise the definition of “sexual contact” for that purpose to mean sexual intercourse or the touching, as defined, of an intimate part, as defined, of a client for the purpose of sexual arousal, gratification, or abuse. The bill would additionally require an order of revocation of a registration or license to be included in a specified administrative adjudication decision or proposed decision that contains a finding of fact that the licensee or registrant engaged in sexual abuse, sexual relations, or sexual behavior, behavior as defined, with a client, or with a former client within 2 years following termination of therapy. The bill would authorize the board to stay these revocations.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 Section 2960 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

2960.
 The board may refuse to issue any registration or license, or may issue a registration or license with terms and conditions, or may suspend or revoke the registration or license of any registrant or licensee if the applicant, registrant, or licensee has been guilty of unprofessional conduct. Unprofessional conduct shall include, but not be limited to:
(a) Conviction of a crime substantially related to the qualifications, functions or duties of a psychologist or psychological assistant.
(b) Use of any controlled substance as defined in Division 10 (commencing with Section 11000) of the Health and Safety Code, or dangerous drug, or any alcoholic beverage to an extent or in a manner dangerous to himself or herself, themselves, any other person, or the public, or to an extent that this use impairs his or her their ability to perform the work of a psychologist with safety to the public.
(c) Fraudulently or neglectfully misrepresenting the type or status of license or registration actually held.
(d) Impersonating another person holding a psychology license or allowing another person to use his or her their license or registration.
(e) Using fraud or deception in applying for a license or registration or in passing the examination provided for in this chapter.
(f) Paying, or offering to pay, accepting, or soliciting any consideration, compensation, or remuneration, whether monetary or otherwise, for the referral of clients.
(g) Violating Section 17500.
(h) Willful, unauthorized communication of information received in professional confidence.
(i) Violating any rule of professional conduct promulgated by the board and set forth in regulations duly adopted under this chapter.
(j) Being grossly negligent in the practice of his or her their profession.
(k) Violating any of the provisions of this chapter or regulations duly adopted thereunder.
(l) The aiding or abetting of any person to engage in the unlawful practice of psychology.
(m) The suspension, revocation or imposition of probationary conditions by another state or country of a license or certificate to practice psychology or as a psychological assistant issued by that state or country to a person also holding a license or registration issued under this chapter if the act for which the disciplinary action was taken constitutes a violation of this section.
(n) The commission of any dishonest, corrupt, or fraudulent act.
(o) (1) Any act of sexual abuse, or sexual relations relations, or sexual behavior with a patient client or former patient client within two years following termination of therapy, or sexual misconduct that is substantially related to the qualifications, functions functions, or duties of a psychologist or psychological assistant or registered psychologist.
(2)  For purposes of this subdivision, “sexual behavior” means inappropriate contact or communication of a sexual nature for purpose of sexual arousal, gratification, exploitation, or abuse. “Sexual behavior” does not include the provision of appropriate therapeutic interventions relating to sexual issues.
(p) Functioning outside of his or her their particular field or fields of competence as established by his or her their education, training, and experience.
(q) Willful failure to submit, on behalf of an applicant for licensure, verification of supervised experience to the board.
(r) Repeated acts of negligence.

SECTION 1.SEC. 2.

 Section 2960.1 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

2960.1.
 (a)Notwithstanding Section 2960, any proposed decision or decision issued under this chapter in accordance with the procedures set forth in Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 11500) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code, that contains any finding of fact that the licensee or registrant engaged in any act of sexual contact or sexual behavior, as those terms are defined in subdivision (b), when that act is with a client, or with a former client within two years following termination of therapy, that constitutes the unprofessional conduct specified in subdivision (o) of Section 2960 shall contain an order of revocation. The revocation shall not be stayed by the administrative law judge, but may be stayed by the board.

(b)For the purposes of this section, the following definitions shall apply:

(1)“Sexual behavior” means inappropriate contact or communication of a sexual nature for the purpose of sexual arousal, gratification, exploitation, or abuse. “Sexual behavior” does not include the provision of appropriate therapeutic interventions relating to sexual issues.

(2)“Sexual contact” means sexual intercourse or the touching of an intimate part of a client for the purpose of sexual arousal, gratification, or abuse.

(3)“Intimate part” and “touching” have the same meanings as defined in Section 243.4 of the Penal Code.