Code Section

Business and Professions Code - BPC

DIVISION 2. HEALING ARTS [500 - 4999.129]

  ( Division 2 enacted by Stats. 1937, Ch. 399. )

CHAPTER 13. Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists [4980 - 4989]

  ( Heading of Chapter 13 amended by Stats. 2014, Ch. 316, Sec. 14. )

ARTICLE 1. Regulation [4980 - 4980.81]
  ( Article 1 added by Stats. 1986, Ch. 1365, Sec. 4. )


(a) Except as provided in subdivision (b), all applicants shall have an active associate registration with the board in order to gain postdegree hours of supervised experience.

(b) (1) Postdegree hours of experience gained before the issuance of an associate registration shall be credited toward licensure if all of the following apply:

(A) The registration applicant applies for the associate registration and the board receives the application within 90 days of the granting of the qualifying master’s degree or doctoral degree.

(B) For applicants completing graduate study on or after January 1, 2020, the experience is obtained at a workplace that, prior to the registration applicant gaining supervised experience hours, requires completed Live Scan fingerprinting. The applicant shall provide the board with a copy of that completed State of California “Request for Live Scan Service” form with the application for licensure.

(C) The board subsequently grants the associate registration.

(2) The applicant shall not be employed or volunteer in a private practice or a professional corporation until the applicant has been issued an associate registration by the board.

(c) Supervised experience that is obtained for purposes of qualifying for licensure shall be related to the practice of marriage and family therapy and comply with the following:

(1) A minimum of 3,000 hours completed during a period of at least 104 weeks.

(2) A maximum of 40 hours in any seven consecutive days.

(3) A minimum of 1,700 hours obtained after the qualifying master’s or doctoral degree was awarded.

(4) A maximum of 1,300 hours obtained prior to the award date of the qualifying master’s or doctoral degree.

(5) A maximum of 750 hours of counseling and direct supervisor contact prior to the award date of the qualifying master’s or doctoral degree.

(6) Hours of experience shall not be gained prior to completing either 12 semester units or 18 quarter units of graduate instruction.

(7) Hours of experience shall not have been gained more than six years prior to the date the application for licensure was received by the board, except that up to 500 hours of clinical experience gained in the supervised practicum required by subdivision (c) of Section 4980.37 and subparagraph (B) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (d) of Section 4980.36 shall be exempt from this six-year requirement.

(8) A minimum of 1,750 hours of direct clinical counseling with individuals, groups, couples, or families, that includes not less than 500 total hours of experience in diagnosing and treating couples, families, and children.

(9) A maximum of 1,200 hours gained under the supervision of a licensed educational psychologist providing educationally related mental health services that are consistent with the scope of practice of an educational psychologist, as specified in Section 4989.14.

(10) A maximum of 1,250 hours of nonclinical practice, consisting of direct supervisor contact, administering and evaluating psychological tests, writing clinical reports, writing progress or process notes, client-centered advocacy, and workshops, seminars, training sessions, or conferences directly related to marriage and family therapy that have been approved by the applicant’s supervisor.

(11) It is anticipated and encouraged that hours of experience will include working with elders and dependent adults who have physical or mental limitations that restrict their ability to carry out normal activities or protect their rights.

This subdivision shall only apply to hours gained on and after January 1, 2010.

(d) An individual who submits an application for licensure between January 1, 2016, and December 31, 2020, may alternatively qualify under the experience requirements of this section that were in place on January 1, 2015.

(Amended by Stats. 2021, Ch. 747, Sec. 4. (AB 690) Effective January 1, 2022.)