WAC Requirement Update

By State law, Licensed Mental Health Counselor applicants must provide the Dept of Health with documentation of having met specific standards prior to being granted the LMHC credential.  One of those standards has to do with supervision which must be provided to the applicant by what the law refers to as an “approved supervisor”. A new WAC clarifying what distinguishes an “approved supervisor” for LMHC candidates has been signed by the Secretary of Health and is scheduled to go into effect September 29, 2006.  This new WAC 246-809-234, specifies the following.

Requirements for an Approved Supervisor

  1. Hold a license without restrictions that has been in good standing for at least two years;
  2. Shall not be a blood or legal relative or cohabitant of the licensure candidate;
  3. Shall not be the licensure candidate’s peer*(see below);
  4. Has not acted as the licensure candidate’s therapist within the past two years;
  5. Prior to beginning supervision of the candidate, shall provide the candidate with a declaration form (provided by the DOH) stating that the supervisor has met the requirements of WAC 246-809-334, and qualifies as an “approved supervisor”.
  6. Shall have completed a minimum of fifteen (15) clock hours of training in clinical supervision obtained through a supervision course, and/or continuing education credits on supervision, or supervision of supervision.
  7. Shall have twenty-five (25) hours of experience in supervision of clinical practice.
  8. Shall have full knowledge of the licensure candidate’s practice activities including: recordkeeping, financial management, ethics of clinical practice, and the licensure candidate’s backup plan for coverage in times when the licensure candidate is not available to their clients.

NOTE: If an LMHC applicant began his/her supervised post-graduate experience before the effective date of these new rules (i.e., Sept 30, 2006), they are exempt from these new requirements.

* “Peer” is defined as a co-worker who is not the licensure candidate’s employer or supervisor.