All communications between you and your therapist will be held in strict confidence unless you provide written permission to release all or portions of content about your treatment. It is your legal right that our sessions and my records about you are kept private. In general, I will tell no one what you tell me. I make every effort to not even reveal that you are receiving treatment.
In all but a few rare situations, your confidentiality is protected by state law and by the rules of my profession. Here are the most common cases in which confidentiality is not protected:
If you were sent to me by a court or an employer for treatment or some type of evaluation, the court or employer may expect a report from me. If this is your situation, please talk with me before you tell me anything you do not want the court or your employer to know. You have a right to tell me only what you are comfortable with telling.
Are you suing someone or being sued? Are you going through a divorce? Are you being charged with a crime? If so, and you tell the court that you are seeing me, I may then be ordered to show the court my records. I will do all I can to prevent that from happening since such disclosure can negatively affect our relationship. Please consult your lawyer about these issues.
If you make a serious threat to harm yourself or another person, the law requires me to try to protect you and/or that other person. This usually means telling others about the threat. I will not promise to not tell others about threats you make.
If I believe a child has been or will be abused or neglected, I am legally required to report this to the authorities. If an elderly person is being abused in any way or taken advantage of financially, I am legally required to report this.
If we are doing couples or family therapy I cannot guarantee that information you disclose will be kept confidential by other members in therapy. The same is true if we are doing group therapy. If you participate in marital or family therapy, I will not disclose confidential information about your treatment unless all person(s) who participated in the treatment with you provide their written authorization to release such information.
The next is not a legal exception to your confidentiality. However, it is a policy you should be aware of if you are in couples therapy with me.
If you and your partner decide to have some individual sessions as part of the couples therapy, what you say in those individual sessions will be considered to be a part of the couples therapy, and can and probably will be discussed in our joint sessions. Do not tell me anything you wish kept secret from your partner. I will remind you of this policy before beginning such individual sessions.
An exception to confidentiality may be related to my need to consult with other professionals in their areas of expertise in order to provide the best treatment for you. Information about you may be shared in this context without using your name.
On the off chance that we may see each other in a public setting, out of privacy, I will only speak with you if you acknowledge me first. Your right to privacy and confidentiality is of the utmost importance to me, and I do not wish to jeopardize your privacy. I will be more than happy to speak briefly with you, but feel it appropriate not to engage in any lengthy discussions in public or outside of the therapy space.
Minors and Confidentiality: Communications with minors (under the age of 18) in services is confidential. Parents who authorized treatment for their child are often involved in their treatment. Based on my professional judgment, I may discuss the treatment of minor clients with their parents or caretaker. Additional questions or comments regarding this topic can be discussed with the therapist.
Email & Text Confidentiality: Secure messaging in the portal is a preferred method to contact therapist. It is important to remember that confidentiality is limited with email and text. By signing below, the client is affirming they have considered and understand this limitation and agree that it is their responsibility to keep communication via text and email, if client chooses to use these methods, private to the extent that they deem appropriate.