Articles by Legal Department Staff

The Legal Department articles are not intended to serve as legal advice and are offered for educational purposes only. The information provided should not be used as a substitute for independent legal advice and it is not intended to address every situation that could potentially arise. Please be aware that laws, regulations and technical standards change over time. As a result, it is important to verify and update any reference or information that is provided in the article.

Articles by Catherine Atkins, JD, Deputy Executive Director

 Changes in Supervision 2019 and Beyond (12/20/2018) 
   This article summarizes the changes in law that go into effect January 1, 2019 and January 1, 2020 regarding supervisor qualifications, duties and requirements
 SB 620 Signed by Govenor (12/17/2018) 
   SB 620 Signed by the Governor
 Managed Health Care (1/4/2016) 
   An informative FAQ about managed health care in California, with suggestions on how to address provider grievances with managed care plans or insurers
 SB 620 (7/1/2015) 
   This article is a review of the 2015 proposed BBS Legislation, SB 620, which would re-craft the licensing path for aspiring LMFTs.
 Understanding Mandated Reporting Requirements AB1775 (2/16/2015) 
   Understanding Mandated Reporting Requirements AB 1775
 Reporting Consensual activity Between Minors (1/2/2014) 
   Reporting Consensual Activity Between Minors The Confusion Unraveled
 Covered California Corner (7/1/2013) 
   Covered California Corner, formerly known as the California Health Benefits Exchange
 Victims of Crime and MFTs as Providers (3/6/2013) 
   The California Vicitm Compensation Program ("VCP") is a program that provides compensation to victims of violent crime who have been injured (physically and/or emotionally). This article describes the requirements and reimbursements of this program.
 Trouble Maker Clients (7/1/2012) 
   While some of your more difficult clients weren???t so pleasant to work with, they have since moved along. However, some difficult clients remain engrossed in your practice, your thoughts, your life???costing you money, time, sleep, and potentially
 Treatment of Minors 4 Vignettes Answered (4/1/2012) 
   Treatment of Minors Vignettes by Catherine Atkins, JD, Deputy Executive Director
 Treatment of Minors Vignettes (4/1/2012) 
   Treatment of Minors Vignettes by Catherine Atkins, JD, Deputy Executive Director
 Medicare Reimbursement How to Bill Second Party Payers (2/1/2012) 
   Medicare Reimbursement: How to Bill Second Party Payers
 LPCC Life After Grandparenting (12/1/2011) 
   After December 31, 2011, LMFTs may no longer grandparent into the LPCC licensure. After January 1, 2012, for LMFTs, LMFT Registered Interns and/or Trainees who wish to become dually licensed as an LMFT and LPCC, the following information will apply
 A 2011 Recap of the 1996 Telemedicine Development Act (11/5/2011) 
   The purpose of this article is to briefly review telemedicine generally and the issues surrounding telemedicine since its creation in California in 1996.
 Therapist Disabilities and the Law (6/14/2011) 
   Take a journey through the day-to-day discrimination that therapists with disabilities experience in their professional worlds (from master's degree programs and employment to licensure and professional associations).
 Therapists Disabilities and the Law Terms Defined (6/1/2011) 
   To assist the reader in navigating the article Therapists, Disabilities and the Law
 Disability Discrimination Laws (6/1/2011) 
   The laws surrounding disability discrimination are vast and complex, this is an attempt to narrow down and summarize the main guiding principles.
 Therapists with Disabilities Resources (6/1/2011) 
   Resources for therapists with disabilities as well as employers/entities looking for guidance on reasonable and feasible accommodations.
 Scrutiny of the Health Care Plans (1/1/2011) 
   CAMFT brings to your attention two stories that recently hit the mainstream media focusing on managed health care plans and some of the issues which you, as a provider, will likely find yourself enmeshed in regularly.
 Working with the Military Four Vignettes to Ponder (1/1/2011) 
   This article will present four vignettes that discuss hypothetical situations involving a therapist's treatment of patients in the military. Readers are invited to submit a written analysis of the legal and ethical issues evident to each vignette.
 LPCC Track for PreLicensed LMFTs (3/1/2010) 
   In 2009, the Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor licensure law was passed and signed here in California. This article is to assist pre-licensed MFTs with the LPCC requirements.
 Medical Marijuana Prescription Cards and Your License (1/1/2010) 
   In recent months we have received inquiries from members possessing medical marijuana cards, engaging in marijuana usage for medical purposes, and requesting information on the implications of such usage and possession on their practice and license.
 CAMFT Members Give Their Opinions on Managed Health Care Plans (11/25/2009) 
   When working with health care plans, have you found yourself having the uncontrollable desire to pull your hair out or band your head against a wall? Well, you are not alone.
 Termination of a Client Four Vignettes Answered (7/1/2009) 
   Termination of a Client: Four Vignettes Answered. Read the selected answers and comments offered for the vignettes.
 Confidentiality and Privilege Group Conjoint Family and Collateral Therapy Issues (6/30/2009) 
   Confidentiality and Privilege Group Copnjoint Family and Collateral Therapy Issues
 Termination of a Client Four Vignettes to Ponder (1/1/2009) 
   Four vignettes are presented below discussing hypothetical situations involving the therapist???s termination of a client. We invite you to provide CAMFT with your written analysis of the legal and ethical issues evident in each of the following four
 1 800 Help My Patient (1/1/2009) 
   CAMFT receives many calls a month from members frustrated by issues of patient care and health plan or insurance coverage policies. Has your patient been denied services? Has your claim been denied for lack of medical necessity? Has your client been
 MFT Working Within the Department of Veterans Affairs (1/1/2009) 
   MFTs working within the Department of Veterans Affairs
 Managed Health Care California Law and Your Rights (11/1/2008) 
   Have you ever felt frustrated when attempting to get reimbursed by a managed care company? We know the answer is "yes." Navigating the policies, procedures, contracts and laws surrounding health plans and insurers can be time consuming and exaspe
 The Passage of Federal Mental Health Legislation (11/1/2008) 
   The Passage of Federal Mental Health Legislation
 MFTs Rights to Privacy vs The First Amendment (1/1/2008) 
   The creation and development of the Internet is arguably one of the most significant contributions of the 20th Century. The Internet truly is a limitless body of information, opening vaults of data previously only privy to the select few. However, wi
 A Mandated Reporter Equals a Mandatory Report (11/1/2007) 
   During a session with your 14-year-old client you learn information that leads you to believe she is a victim of child abuse. As a well trained therapist, you call Child Protective Services (???CPS???) after the session to report the abuse and are to
 Joining the Fight to Gain Medicare Reimbursement Rights for MFTs (5/1/2007) 
   We are at the beginning of a new legislative cycle and therefore at an imperative point to again encourage the passage of a bill to include MFTs in Medicare reimbursement. Although we have come close in the past to achieving this goal, we continue to
 Landlord Tenant Commercial Leases Frequently Asked Questions (3/1/2007) 
   Marriage and Family Therapists often find themselves in the role of Landlord, as well as Tenant in their business practices. Dealing with the legal issues surrounding your landlord-tenant agreements can be confusing, stressful and time-consuming. Her
 My Patient is Moving to Another State (3/1/2007) 
   The Board of Behavioral Sciences (BBS) would like to make the following recommendations to California consumers who choose to seek therapy or counseling over the Internet. Individuals who provide psychotherapy or counseling, either in person, by tele
 Enhancing Job Marketability Bilingualism of California (1/1/2007) 
   Although the overall employment of counselors is expected to grow faster than average for all occupations1, today???s job market continues to become increasingly competitive. Having skills above and beyond a Marriage and Family Therapist license, Int
 Putting Your Best Foot Forward Job Hunting and CV Writing Tips (9/1/2006) 
   Job hunting and curriculum vitae (???CV???) writing can be a daunting and time consuming task whether one is searching for a trainee position, an internship or changing jobs as a licensed MFT. Only the lucky few obtain positions without having to und