The privacy of all communications between a patient and a therapist is protected by law and may only be released with your written permission, with the following exceptions:
1) In legal proceedings a judge may order my testimony or request your records if he/she determines that the issues demand it.
2) If I believe that a child, elderly person, or disabled person is being abused, I must file a report with the appropriate state agency.
3) If I believe that a patient is threatening serious bodily harm to another, I am required to take protective actions. These actions may include notifying the potential victim, contacting the police, or seeking hospitalization for the client.
4) If the client threatens to harm himself/herself, I may be obligated to seek hospitalization for him/her or to contact family members or others who can help provide protection.
These situations have rarely occurred in my practice, however, should one occur I will attempt to both make you aware and discuss fully the circumstances before taking any action.