Respecting Client Rights
Counselors maintain awareness and sensitivity regarding cultural meanings of confidentiality and privacy. Counselors respect differing views toward disclosure of information. Counselors hold ongoing discussions with clients as to how, when, and with whom information is to be shared.
Respect for Privacy
Counselors respect the privacy of prospective and current clients. Counselors request private information from clients only when it is beneficial to the counseling process.
Respect for Confidentiality
Counselors protect the confidential information of prospective and current clients. Counselors disclose information only with appropriate consent or with sound legal or ethical justification.
Explanation of Limitations
At initiation and throughout the counseling process, counselors inform clients of the limitations of confidentiality and seek to identify situations in which confidentiality must be breached.
Serious and Foreseeable Harm and Legal Requirements
The general requirement that counselors keep information confidential does not apply when disclosure is required to protect clients or identified others from serious and foreseeable harm or when legal requirements demand that confidential information must be revealed. Counselors consult with other professionals when in doubt as to the validity of an exception. Additional considerations apply when addressing end-of-life issues.
Confidentiality Regarding End-of-Life Decisions
Counselors who provide services to terminally ill individuals who are considering hastening their own deaths have the option to maintain confidentiality, depending on applicable laws and the specific circumstances of the situation and after seeking consultation or supervision from appropriate professional and legal parties.
Contagious, Life Threatening Diseases
When clients disclose that they have a disease commonly known to be both communicable and life threatening, counselors may be justified in disclosing information to identifiable third parties, if the parties are known to be at serious and foreseeable risk of contracting the disease. Prior to making a disclosure, counselors assess the intent of clients to inform the third parties about their disease or to engage in any behaviors that may be harmful to an identifiable third party. Counselors adhere to relevant state laws concerning disclosure about disease status.
When ordered by a court to release confidential or privileged information without a client’s permission, counselors seek to obtain written, informed consent from the client or take steps to prohibit the disclosure or have it limited as narrowly as possible because of potential harm to the client or counseling relationship.
To the extent possible, clients are informed before confidential information is disclosed and are involved in the disclosure decision-making process. When circumstances require the disclosure of confidential information, only essential information is revealed.
Information Shared With Others
Counselors make every effort to ensure that privacy and confidentiality of clients are maintained by subordinates, including employees, supervises, students, clerical assistants, and volunteers.
When services provided to the client involve participation by an interdisciplinary or treatment team, the client will be informed of the team’s existence and composition, information being shared, and the purposes of sharing such information.
Counselors discuss confidential information only in settings in which they can reasonably ensure client privacy.
Counselors disclose information to third-party payers only when clients have authorized such disclosure.
Transmitting Confidential Information
Counselors take precautions to ensure the confidentiality of all information transmitted through the use of any medium.
Counselors protect the confidentiality of deceased clients, consistent with legal requirements and the documented preferences of the client.
Groups and Families
In group work, counselors clearly explain the importance and parameters of confidentiality for the specific group.
Couples and Family Counseling
In couples and family counseling, counselors clearly define who is considered “the client” and discuss expectations and limitations of confidentiality. Counselors seek agreement and document in writing such agreement among all involved parties regarding the confidentiality of information. In the absence of an agreement to the contrary, the couple or family is considered to be the client.
Clients Lacking Capacity to Give Informed Consent
Responsibility to Clients
When counseling minor clients or adult clients who lack the capacity to give voluntary, informed consent, counselors protect the confidentiality of information received—in any medium—in the counseling relationship as specified by laws, written policies, and applicable ethical standards.
Responsibility to Parents and Legal Guardians
Counselors inform parents and legal guardians about the role of counselors and the confidential nature of the counseling relationship, consistent with current legal and custodial arrangements. Counselors are sensitive to the cultural diversity of families and respect the inherent rights and responsibilities of parents/guardians regarding the welfare of their children/charges according to law. Counselors work to establish, as appropriate, collaborative relationships with parents/guardians to best serve clients.
Release of Confidential Information
When counseling minor clients or adult clients who lack the capacity to give voluntary consent to release confidential information, counselors seek permission from an appropriate third party to disclose information. In such instances, counselors inform clients consistent with their level of understanding and take appropriate measures to safeguard client confidentiality
Respect for Privacy
Information shared in a consulting relationship is discussed for professional purposes only. Written and oral reports present only data germane to the purposes of the consultation, and every effort is made to protect client identity and to avoid undue invasion of privacy.
Disclosure of Confidential Information
When consulting with colleagues, counselors do not disclose confidential information that reasonably could lead to the identification of a client or other person or organization with whom they have a confidential relationship unless they have obtained the prior consent of the person or organization or the disclosure cannot be avoided. They disclose information only to the extent necessary to achieve the purposes of the consultation.
To improve the responsiveness of the sites for our users, we may use “cookies”, or similar electronic tools to collect information to assign each visitor a unique, random number as a User Identification (User ID) to understand the user’s individual interests using the Identified Computer. Unless you voluntarily identify yourself (through registration, for example), we will have no way of knowing who you are, even if we assign a cookie to your computer. The only personal information a cookie can contain is information you supply (an example of this is when you ask for our Personalised Horoscope). A cookie cannot read data off your hard drive. Our advertisers may also assign their own cookies to your browser (if you click on their ads), a process that we do not control. Our web servers automatically collect limited information about your computer’s connection to the Internet, including your IP address, when you visit our site. (Your IP address is a number that lets computers attached to the Internet know where to send you data — such as the web pages you view.) Your IP address does not identify you personally. We use this information to deliver our web pages to you upon request, to tailor our site to the interests of our users, to measure traffic within our site and let advertisers know the geographic locations from where our visitors come.
LINKS TO THE OTHER SITES
We shares the sensitive personal information to any third party without obtaining the prior consent of the user in the following limited circumstances:
(a) When it is requested or required by law or by any court or governmental agency or authority to disclose, for the purpose of verification of identity, or for the prevention, detection, investigation including cyber incidents, or for prosecution and punishment of offences. These disclosures are made in good faith and belief that such disclosure is reasonably necessary for enforcing these Terms; for complying with the applicable laws and regulations.