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AB-2117 Marriage and family therapists: clinical social workers: professional clinical counselors.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 04/30/2018 09:00 PM
AB2117:v98#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  April 30, 2018

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 2117


Introduced by Assembly Member Arambula

February 08, 2018


An act to amend Sections 4980.72, 4984.01, 4996.17, 4996.28, 4999.60, and 4999.100 of the Business and Professions Code, relating to healing arts.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 2117, as amended, Arambula. Marriage and family therapists: clinical social workers: professional clinical counselors.
(1) Existing law provides for the licensure, registration, and regulation of marriage and family therapists, associate marriage and family therapists, clinical social workers, associate clinical social workers, professional clinical counselors, and associate professional clinical counselors by the Board of Behavioral Sciences. Existing law provides that an associate the registration for an associate marriage and family therapist, associate clinical social worker, or associate professional clinical counselor may be renewed before its expiration date by taking specified actions.
This bill would authorize renewal of an expired associate registration for an associate marriage and family therapist, associate clinical social worker, or associate professional clinical counselor in the same manner in which an unexpired registration is renewed.
(2) With respect to associate clinical social workers, existing law requires a registrant to comply with specified requirements to renew his or her registration, including obtaining a passing score on a state law and ethics examination. Existing law also authorizes that registration to be renewed a maximum of 5 times.
This bill would instead require an associate clinical social worker to participate in the state law and ethics examination each year until successful completion of the exam. The bill would prohibit renewal or reinstatement of a registration beyond 6 years from the month that registration was issued and would require an applicant seeking to obtain a subsequent associate clinical social worker registration where no further renewals are possible to pass the state law and ethics examination as a condition of obtaining a subsequent associate clinical social worker registration.
(3) Existing law requires experience gained outside of California to be accepted toward requirements for licensure as a clinical social worker and requires an applicant with education gained outside of California to complete a course in California law and ethics. Existing law also authorizes the board to issue a license in clinical social work to a person who holds a valid clinical social work license issued in another state if certain conditions are met, including completion of a course in California law and ethics.
This bill would require the course in California law and ethics to be completed before registering registration as an associate clinical social worker.
(4) Existing law authorizes the board to issue a license as a marriage and family therapist or a professional clinical counselor to a person who holds a valid license in another state or country if certain conditions are satisfied, including that the applicant’s supervised experience is substantially equivalent to requirements for licensure in this state, and specifies a method for the board to consider and calculate substantial equivalency for those purposes.
This bill would revise the method for determining substantially equivalent experience.
(5) The bill would make other related, nonsubstantive changes.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 Section 4980.72 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

4980.72.
 (a) This section applies to a person who is licensed outside of California and applies for licensure on or after January 1, 2016.
(b) The board may issue a license to a person who, at the time of submitting an application for a license pursuant to this chapter, holds a valid license in good standing issued by a board of marriage counselor examiners, board of marriage and family therapists, or corresponding authority, of any state or country, if all of the following conditions are satisfied:
(1) The applicant’s education is substantially equivalent, as defined in Section 4980.79. The applicant’s degree title need not be identical to that required by Section 4980.36 or 4980.37.
(2) The applicant complies with Section 4980.76, if applicable.
(3) (A) The applicant’s supervised experience is substantially equivalent to that required for a license under this chapter.
(B) For persons who have held their license for less than four years immediately preceding the date of application, the board shall determine substantial equivalency by considering hours of experience obtained outside of California during the six-year period immediately preceding the date the applicant initially obtained the license described above. If the applicant has less than 3,000 hours of qualifying supervised experience, time actively licensed in the equivalent profession shall be accepted at a rate of 100 hours per month, up to a maximum of 1,200 hours, if the applicant’s degree meets the practicum requirement described in subparagraph (C) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 4980.79 without exemptions or remediation.
(4) The applicant passes the California law and ethics examination.
(5) The applicant passes a clinical examination designated by the board. An applicant who obtained his or her license or registration under another jurisdiction may apply for licensure with the board without taking the clinical examination if both of the following conditions are met:
(A) The applicant obtained a passing score on the clinical licensing examination set forth in regulation as accepted by the board.
(B) The applicant’s license or registration in that jurisdiction is active, in good standing at the time of his or her application, and is not revoked, suspended, surrendered, denied, or otherwise restricted or encumbered.

SEC. 2.

 Section 4984.01 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

4984.01.
 (a) The associate marriage and family therapist intern registration shall expire one year from the last day of the month in which it was issued.
(b) To renew the registration, the registrant shall, on or before the expiration date of the registration, complete all of the following actions:
(1) Apply for renewal on a form prescribed by the board.
(2) Pay a renewal fee prescribed by the board.
(3) Participate in the California law and ethics examination pursuant to Section 4980.399 each year until successful completion of this examination.
(4) Notify the board whether he or she has been convicted, as defined in Section 490, of a misdemeanor or felony, and whether any disciplinary action has been taken against him or her by a regulatory or licensing board in this or any other state subsequent to the last renewal of the registration.
(c) An expired registration may be renewed by completing all of the actions described in paragraphs (1) to (4), inclusive, of subdivision (b).
(d) The registration may be renewed a maximum of five times. No registration shall be renewed or reinstated beyond six years from the last day of the month during which it was issued, regardless of whether it has been revoked. When no further renewals are possible, an applicant may apply for and obtain a subsequent associate registration number if the applicant meets the educational requirements for registration in effect at the time of the application for a subsequent associate registration number and has passed the California law and ethics examination described in Section 4980.399. An applicant who is issued a subsequent associate registration number pursuant to this subdivision shall not be employed or volunteer in a private practice.

SEC. 3.

 Section 4996.17 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

4996.17.
 (a) (1) Experience gained outside of California shall be accepted toward the licensure requirements if it is substantially the equivalent of the requirements of this chapter.
(2) Commencing January 1, 2014, an applicant with education gained outside of California shall complete an 18-hour course in California law and professional ethics. The content of the course shall include, but not be limited to, the following: advertising, scope of practice, scope of competence, treatment of minors, confidentiality, dangerous patients, psychotherapist-patient privilege, recordkeeping, patient access to records, state and federal laws related 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, therapist disclosures to patients, differences in legal and ethical standards in different types of work settings, and licensing law and process. This coursework shall be completed before registration as an associate.
(b) The board may issue a license to any person who, at the time of application, holds a valid clinical social work license issued by a board of clinical social work examiners or corresponding authority of any state, if the person passes, or has passed, the licensing examinations as specified in Section 4996.1 and pays the required fees. Issuance of the license is conditioned upon all of the following:
(1) The applicant has supervised experience that is substantially the equivalent of that required by this chapter. If the applicant has less than 3,200 hours of qualifying supervised experience, time actively licensed as a clinical social worker shall be accepted at a rate of 100 hours per month up to a maximum of 1,200 hours.
(2) Completion of the following coursework or training in or out of this state:
(A) 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.
(B) A minimum of 10 contact hours of training or coursework in human sexuality as specified in Section 25, and any regulations promulgated thereunder.
(C) A minimum of 15 contact hours of training or coursework in alcoholism and other chemical substance dependency, as specified by regulation.
(D) A minimum of 15 contact hours of coursework or training in spousal or partner abuse assessment, detection, and intervention strategies.
(3) Commencing January 1, 2014, completion of an 18-hour course in California law and professional ethics. The content of the course shall include, but not be limited to, the following: advertising, scope of practice, scope of competence, treatment of minors, confidentiality, dangerous patients, psychotherapist-patient privilege, recordkeeping, patient access to records, state and federal laws related 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, therapist disclosures to patients, differences in legal and ethical standards in different types of work settings, and licensing law and process. This coursework shall be completed before registration as an associate.
(4) The applicant’s license is in good standing and is not suspended, revoked, restricted, sanctioned, or voluntarily surrendered in any state.
(5) The applicant is not currently under investigation in any other state, and has not been charged with an offense for any act substantially related to the practice of social work by any public agency, entered into any consent agreement or been subject to an administrative decision that contains conditions placed by an agency upon an applicant’s professional conduct or practice, including any voluntary surrender of license, or been the subject of an adverse judgment resulting from the practice of social work that the board determines constitutes evidence of a pattern of incompetence or negligence.
(6) The applicant shall provide a certification from each state where he or she holds a license pertaining to licensure, disciplinary action, and complaints pending.
(7) The applicant is not subject to denial of licensure under Section 480, 4992.3, 4992.35, or 4992.36.
(c) The board may issue a license to any person who, at the time of application, holds a valid clinical social work license issued by a board of clinical social work examiners or a corresponding authority of any state, if the person has held that license for at least four years immediately preceding the date of application, the person passes, or has passed, the licensing examinations as specified in Section 4996.1, and the person pays the required fees. Issuance of the license is conditioned upon all of the following:
(1) Completion of the following coursework or training in or out of state:
(A) 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.
(B) A minimum of 10 contact hours of training or coursework in human sexuality as specified in Section 25, and any regulations promulgated thereunder.
(C) A minimum of 15 contact hours of training or coursework in alcoholism and other chemical substance dependency, as specified by regulation.
(D) A minimum of 15 contact hours of coursework or training in spousal or partner abuse assessment, detection, and intervention strategies.
(2) Commencing January 1, 2014, completion of an 18-hour course in California law and professional ethics. The content of the course shall include, but not be limited to, the following: advertising, scope of practice, scope of competence, treatment of minors, confidentiality, dangerous patients, psychotherapist-patient privilege, recordkeeping, patient access to records, state and federal laws related 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, therapist disclosures to patients, differences in legal and ethical standards in different types of work settings, and licensing law and process. This coursework shall be completed before registering registration as an associate.
(3) The applicant has been licensed as a clinical social worker continuously for a minimum of four years prior to the date of application.
(4) The applicant’s license is in good standing and is not suspended, revoked, restricted, sanctioned, or voluntarily surrendered in any state.
(5) The applicant is not currently under investigation in any other state, and has not been charged with an offense for any act substantially related to the practice of social work by any public agency, entered into any consent agreement or been subject to an administrative decision that contains conditions placed by an agency upon an applicant’s professional conduct or practice, including any voluntary surrender of license, or been the subject of an adverse judgment resulting from the practice of social work that the board determines constitutes evidence of a pattern of incompetence or negligence.
(6) The applicant provides a certification from each state where he or she holds a license pertaining to licensure, disciplinary action, and complaints pending.
(7) The applicant is not subject to denial of licensure under Section 480, 4992.3, 4992.35, or 4992.36.
(d) An applicant who obtained his or her license or registration under another jurisdiction may apply for licensure with the board without taking the clinical examination specified in Section 4996.1 if both of the following conditions are met:
(1) The applicant obtained a passing score on the clinical licensing examination set forth in regulation as accepted by the board.
(2) The applicant’s license or registration in that jurisdiction is active, in good standing at the time of his or her application, and is not revoked, suspended, surrendered, denied, or otherwise restricted or encumbered.

SEC. 4.

 Section 4996.28 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

4996.28.
 (a) Registration as an associate clinical social worker shall expire one year from the last day of the month during which it was issued. To renew a registration, the registrant shall, on or before the expiration date of the registration, complete all of the following actions:
(1) Apply for renewal on a form prescribed by the board.
(2) Pay a renewal fee prescribed by the board.
(3) Notify the board whether he or she has been convicted, as defined in Section 490, of a misdemeanor or felony, and whether any disciplinary action has been taken by a regulatory or licensing board in this or any other state, subsequent to the last renewal of the registration.
(4) Participate in the California law and ethics examination pursuant to Section 4992.09 each year until successful completion of this examination.
(b) An expired registration may be renewed by completing all of the actions described in paragraphs (1) to (4), inclusive, of subdivision (a).
(c) A registration as an associate clinical social worker may be renewed a maximum of five times. No registration shall be renewed or reinstated beyond six years from the last day of the month during which the registration was issued, regardless of whether the registration has been revoked. When no further renewals are possible, an applicant may apply for and obtain a subsequent associate clinical social worker registration number if the applicant meets all requirements for registration in effect at the time of his or her application for a subsequent associate clinical social worker registration number and has passed the California law and ethics examination pursuant to Section 4992.09. An applicant issued a subsequent associate registration number pursuant to this subdivision shall not be employed or volunteer in a private practice.

SEC. 5.

 Section 4999.60 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

4999.60.
 (a) This section applies to persons who are licensed outside of California and apply for licensure on or after January 1, 2016.
(b) The board may issue a license to a person who, at the time of submitting an application for a license pursuant to this chapter, holds a valid license in good standing as a professional clinical counselor, or other counseling license that allows the applicant to independently provide clinical mental health services, in another jurisdiction of the United States, if all of the following conditions are satisfied:
(1) The applicant’s education is substantially equivalent, as defined in Section 4999.63.
(2) The applicant complies with subdivision (c) of Section 4999.40, if applicable.
(3) (A) The applicant’s supervised experience is substantially equivalent to that required for a license under this chapter. For
(B) For persons who have held their license for less than four years immediately preceding the date of application, the board shall determine substantial equivalency by considering hours of experience obtained outside of California during the six-year period immediately preceding the date the applicant initially obtained the license described above. If the applicant has less than 3,000 hours of qualifying supervised experience, time actively licensed in the equivalent profession shall be accepted at a rate of 100 hours per month up to a maximum of 1,200 hours if the applicant’s degree meets the practicum requirement described in subparagraph (C) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 4999.63 without exemptions or remediation.
(4) The applicant passes the examinations required to obtain a license under this chapter. An applicant who obtained his or her license or registration under another jurisdiction may apply for licensure with the board without taking the clinical examination if both of the following conditions are met:
(A) The applicant obtained a passing score on the clinical licensing examination set forth in regulation as accepted by the board.
(B) The applicant’s license or registration in that jurisdiction is active, in good standing at the time of his or her application, and is not revoked, suspended, surrendered, denied, or otherwise restricted or encumbered.

SEC. 6.

 Section 4999.100 of the Business and Professions Code is amended to read:

4999.100.
 (a) An associate registration shall expire one year from the last day of the month in which it was issued.
(b) To renew a registration, the registrant registrant, on or before the expiration date of the registration, shall do the following:
(1) Apply for a renewal on a form prescribed by the board.
(2) Pay a renewal fee prescribed by the board.
(3) Notify the board whether he or she has been convicted, as defined in Section 490, of a misdemeanor or felony, or whether any disciplinary action has been taken by any regulatory or licensing board in this or any other state, subsequent to the registrant’s last renewal.
(4) Participate in the California law and ethics examination pursuant to Section 4999.53 each year until successful completion of this examination.
(c) An expired registration may be renewed by completing all of the actions described in paragraphs (1) to (4), inclusive, of subdivision (b).
(d) The associate registration may be renewed a maximum of five times. Registration shall not be renewed or reinstated beyond six years from the last day of the month during which it was issued, regardless of whether it has been revoked. When no further renewals are possible, an applicant may apply for and obtain a subsequent associate registration number if the applicant meets the educational requirements for registration in effect at the time of the application for a subsequent associate registration number and has passed the California law and ethics examination described in Section 4999.53. An applicant who is issued a subsequent associate registration number pursuant to this subdivision shall not be employed or volunteer in a private practice.