(a)A licensee must provide marriage and family therapy
professional services only in the context of a professional relationship.
(b)A licensee must make known in writing to a prospective
client the important aspects of the professional relationship, including
the licensee's status as an LMFT or LMFT Associate, any probationary
status or other restrictions placed on the licensee by the council,
office procedures, after-hours coverage, fees, and arrangements for
payment (which might affect the client's decision to enter into the
(c)A licensee must obtain an appropriate consent for
treatment before providing professional services. A licensee must
make reasonable efforts to determine whether the conservatorship,
guardianship, or parental rights of the client have been modified
by a court. Before the commencement of therapy services to a minor
client who is named in a custody agreement or court order, a licensee
must obtain and review a current copy of the custody agreement or
court order in a suit affecting the parent-child relationship. A licensee
must maintain these documents in the client's record. When federal
or state statutes provide an exemption to secure consent of a parent
or guardian before providing services to a minor, such as in Texas
Family Code, Chapter 32 (relating to Consent to Treatment of Child
by Non-Parent or Child), a licensee must follow the protocol set forth
in such federal or state statutes.
(d)A licensee must make known in writing to a prospective
client the confidential nature of the client's disclosures and the
clinical record, including the legal limitations of the confidentiality
of the mental health record and information.
(e)No commission or rebate or any other form of remuneration
may be given or received by a licensee for the referral of clients
for professional services. A licensee employed or under contract with
a chemical dependency facility or a mental health facility must comply
with the requirements in Texas Health and Safety Code, §164.006
(relating to Soliciting and Contracting with Certain Referral Sources).
Compliance with Texas Health and Safety Code, Chapter 164 (relating
to Treatment Facilities Marketing and Admission Practices) is not
considered a violation of state law regarding illegal remuneration.
(f)A licensee may not exploit the licensee's position
of trust with a client or former client.
(g)A licensee may not engage in activities that seek
to meet the licensee's personal needs instead of the needs of the
(h)A licensee may not provide marriage and family
therapy services to family members, personal friends, educational
associates, business associates, or others whose welfare might be
jeopardized by such a dual relationship.
(i)A licensee must set and maintain professional boundaries
with clients and former clients.
(j)A licensee may disclose confidential information
to medical or law enforcement personnel if the licensee determines
there is a probability of imminent physical injury by the client to
the client or others or there is a probability of immediate mental
or emotional injury to the client.
(k)In group therapy settings, the licensee must take
reasonable precautions to protect individuals from physical or emotional
trauma resulting from interaction within the group.
(l)A licensee must make a reasonable effort to avoid
non-therapeutic relationships with clients or former clients. A non-therapeutic
relationship is an activity begun by either the licensee, the client,
or former client for the purposes of establishing a social, business,
or other relationship not related to therapy. A licensee must ensure
the welfare of the client or former client if a non-therapeutic relationship
(m)A licensee may not bill clients or third parties
for services not actually rendered or as agreed to in writing.
(n)A licensee must end a professional relationship
when it is reasonably clear the client is not benefiting from it.
Upon ending a professional relationship, if the client still requires
mental health services, the licensee must make reasonable efforts
to provide a written referral to clients for appropriate services
and to facilitate the transfer to appropriate care.
(o)A licensee who engages in technology-assisted services
must provide the client with the licensee's license number and information
on how to contact the council by telephone, electronic communication,
or mail. The licensee must comply with all other provisions of this
(p)A licensee may not offer services that are beyond
the licensee's professional competency, and the services provided
must be within accepted professional standards of practice and appropriate
to the needs of the client. In emerging areas in which generally recognized
standards for preparatory training do not exist, licensees must take
reasonable steps to ensure the competence of their work and to protect
clients, research participants, and other affected individuals from
the potential for harm.
(q)A licensee must base all services on an assessment,
evaluation, or diagnosis of the client.
(r)A licensee must evaluate a client's progress on
a continuing basis to guide service delivery and must make use of
supervision and consultation as indicated by the client's needs.
(s)A licensee may not knowingly offer or provide professional
services to an individual concurrently receiving professional services
from another mental health services provider except with that provider's
knowledge. If a licensee learns of such concurrent professional services,
the licensee must take immediate and reasonable action to inform the
other mental health services provider.
(t)A licensee may not aid or abet the unlicensed practice
of marriage and family therapy services by a person required to be
licensed under the Act. A licensee must report to the council knowledge
of any unlicensed practice.
(u)A licensee may not enter into a non-professional
relationship with a client's family member or any person having a
personal or professional relationship with a client, if the licensee
knows or reasonably should have known such a relationship could be
detrimental to the client.
(v)A licensee must refrain from providing services
when they know or should know that their physical or mental health
or lack of objectivity are likely to impair their competency or harm
a client or other person with whom they have a professional relationship.
certifies that legal counsel has reviewed
the adoption and found it to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal
Filed with the Office
of the Secretary of State on September 1, 2022
Darrel D. Spinks
Texas State Board of Examiners of Marriage and Family Therapists
Effective date: September 21, 2022
Proposal publication date: April 22, 2022
For further information, please call: (512) 305-7706