Dictionary of Ethical and Legal Terms and Issues : The Essential Guide for Mental Health Professionals book cover
1st Edition

Dictionary of Ethical and Legal Terms and Issues
The Essential Guide for Mental Health Professionals

ISBN 9780415953221
Published November 15, 2006 by Routledge
290 Pages

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Book Description

The professional practice of counseling and mental health can often be complex and litigious. While there are many professional ethics textbooks, there are few, if any, supporting resources to assist in mastering basic terminology, or to offer easy access to important legal opinions in everyday practice.

The Dictionary of Ethical and Legal Terms and Issues is an invaluable resource for students and practitioners alike who need to navigate that complexity. The book blends ethical, legal, and professional issues along with a dictionary for the mental health professional in one handy volume.

An essential resource in any professional library, this book will be of interest to anyone who needs a ready guide to the myriad ethical and legal terms and issues encountered in both training and practice.

Table of Contents

Introduction. Part I: Dictionary of Ethical and Legal Terms. Part II: Ethical Issues. Boundaries, Boundary Crossing and Violations. Clinician Competency. Community Values and Ethical Decision Making. Complementary and Alternative Counseling Interventions. Confidentiality. Cultural Factors in Ethical Decision Making. Ethical Decision Making Strategy. Ethical Perspectives. Ethical Theories Impacting Clinical Practice. Ethics Audit of Your Clinical Practice. Informed Consent. Internet Counseling Ethics. Organizational Dynamics and Organizational Ethics. Religion, Spirituality and Ethics. Technology and Ethics. Using Case Material in Presentations and Publications. Part III: Legal Issues. ADA. Billing and Fees. Bartering. Child Custody. Client Complaints. Competency (Client). Confidentiality, Limits To. Conflict of Interests. Diminished Capacity. Depositions. Duties to Third Parties. Duty to Warn and Duty to Protect. End of Life Considerations. Expert Testimony I. Expert Testimony II: Frye and Daubert Tests. HIPPA. Liability, Direct and Indirect. Malpractice. Mandatory Reporting. Record Keeping. Repressed and Recovered Memories. Sexual Misconduct. Subpoenas, Responding To. Terminating Counseling/Therapy. Testimonial Privilege. Part IV: Appendix.  Key Legal Cases and Legislation Impacting Mental Health Practice. Cases Addressing Immunity From Liability in Breaching Confidentiality. Cases Addressing Duty to Warn/Duty to Protect. Cases Addressing Client-Practitioner Privileged Communication/Confidentiality. Cases Addressing Liability in Clinical Supervision. Cases Addressing Negligence in Academic Advisement. Cases Addressing Mandatory Reporting. Cases Addressing Harassment. Cases Addressing Abortion Counseling. Cases Addressing School Curriculum. Cases Addressing ADHD. Cases Addressing Educational Placement. Legislation Influencing School Counseling Practice.

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Len Sperry, M.D., Ph.D., is Professor and Director of the Doctoral Program in Counseling at Florida Atlantic University and Clinical Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine at the Medical College of Wisconsin. He is board certified in both psychiatry and clinical psychology, is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association and a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, and has published more than 400 articles and chapters and some 50 professional books.


“This is one of those few books that every licensed mental health professional should have in their office (as well as students wishing to become licensed mental health professionals). Dr. Sperry has done an excellent service to the profession by putting this book together.”  - Thomas G. Plante, Ph.D., ABPP, Professor and Chair of Psychology and Scholar-in-Residence of the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University, USA

“In this meritorious book by Len Sperry, the key terms in ethics are defined and their special relevance to clinical ethical decision-making is detailed. This text will be particularly valuable for professionals and students who discern and seek to resolve knotty ethical problems that naturally arise in mental health care.”  - Laura Roberts, M.D., Chairman and the Charles E. Kubly Professor of Psychiatry at the Medical College of Wisconsin, USA; co-author, Ethics in Mental Health Care

“This book presents the practitioner, student, and educator with a broad and accessible array of terms and issues crucial for mental health professionals. It is written in a concise, comprehensive, and accessible style. As such, it is indispensable for its breadth and depth in succinctly and clearly describing the legal and ethical issues and elements of contemporary mental health professions.” —Ronald Bullis, Ph.D., J.D., author of Sacred Calling, Secular Accountability: Law and Ethics in Complementary and Spiritual Counseling

"This book would be an excellent adjunct to any course or training program on ethical and legal issues in the counseling profession."- E.H. Mike Robinson, III Ph.D. N.C.C., Heintzelman Eminent Scholar Chair, University of Central Florida, USA