Law, Ethics and Supervision: The Use of Authority

Law, Ethics and Supervision: The Use of Authority

This course meets  EITHER the  6 hour BBS Law/Ethics requirement OR the BBS 6 hour Supervision requirement mandated for each 2 year license renewal. Use for CAMFT Supervisor Certification Renewal. Apply this course towards the new BBS 15 hour training requirement for new supervisors.

“A licensee can take a supervision-focused law and ethics course from an approved provider and can apply it to the law and ethics requirement as long as they are not also using it to meet the supervision training requirement.  A single course cannot fulfill both requirements.”

 BBS 6/8/23 email correspondence

This course includes required supervisor documentation lists, guidelines for creating intern/associate agreements and emergency plans. Detailed case examples illustrate the development and use of an authoritative voice in legal/ethical situations.


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  • 6 Hours of Continuing Education Units for California LMFTs, LCSWs and LPCCs
  • Your may apply this course to the BBS Law& Ethics requirement
  • You may apply this course to BBS Supervision requirement

This course meets the BBS requirements for 6 CEU hours of Supervision training mandated every 2 years for supervisors of MFT trainees and associates, PCC associates and Associate Social Workers. It may be applied to the one time 15 hour supervision training requirement for supervisors of  AMFTs and trainees, ASWs and APCCs.

Who should take this course:

  • LMFTs, LCSWs or LPCCs who are new supervisors
  • LMFTs, LCSWs or LPCCs who are supervising graduate students, qualified Associates pursuing supervision in agency or private practice settings or those supervising agency staff
  • LMFTs, LCSWs or LPCCS who provide consultation
  • Potential supervisors
  • LMFTs, LCSWs or LPCCs who need to meet the BBS Law & Ethics requirement
  • LMFTs, LCSWs or LPCCs accruing the 36 CEUs required by the BBS every license renewal period
  • LMFTs, LCSWs or LPCCs who receive supervision or consultation

This course meets the qualifications for 6 hours of continuing education credit forL MFTs, LCSWs and LPCCs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences.



$62, with unlimited retries until course has been passed. Additionally, you may save your answers at any time during the exam and return to it later by logging back in.

Course Description:

This course discusses the legal and ethical issues in supervision and therapy. The first section of this course focuses on the foundations of supervision. This foundation will give the supervisor both the technical knowledge and the confidence to develop an authoritative supervisory voice. It describes the requirements to become a supervisor and discusses the decision to supervise. A list of required documentation is provided. Confidentiality, advertising/marketing, standards of care and legal updates are reviewed. Guidelines for creating a learning contract are suggested. A plan for writing “Red Flag Guidelines” is proposed as a tool to assist supervisees in dealing with crisis situations. Recordkeeping and suggestions of additional documentation to keep on file are discussed. The first section helps to establish clear guidelines that create a strong foundation.

The second section focuses on the “how to” of supervision. Ethical standards specific to supervision are listed with discussion of the scope of practice and the scope of competency. With this base intact, the supervisor can now focus on her/his/their use of authority. The Collaborative-Directive continuum of supervision is defined. Legal and ethical issues are described with emphasis on mandated reporting, dual relationships and boundaries. Case examples illustrate the use of the directive voice.

Course Outline:


Part I: Establishing the Foundation
  • Requirements for Supervisors-Licensing laws
  • Supervised experience requirements for licensure
  • The Decision to Supervise
  • Required documentation list
  • Confidentiality and Exceptions-Adults& Minors
  • Consent to Treat-Adults & Minors
  • Advertising and Marketing
  • Standards of care
  • Legal/Ethical Supervision updates
  • Employment of interns
  • Creating a Learning contract/agreement
  • Learning Contract Guidelines
  • Handling Emergencies-Red Flag guidelines
  • Sample Red Flag guidelines
  • Case vignette: Red Flag guidelines
  • Recordkeeping
  • Recommended Documents for each Supervisee’s file
  • Termination
Part II: The Use of Authority
  • Ethical standards specific to supervisors and supervisees
  • Scope of practice and scope of competency
  • The Collaborative-Directive Continuum
  • Case vignette: Use of authority regarding legal mandates
  • Use of Authority regarding overlapping boundaries
  • Case vignette: Use of authority regarding dual and multiple relationships
Resource Materials


Course Objectives:

  • Name four legal requirements for supervisors
  • List  four required documentation to begin supervising
  • Describe three advertising and marketing requirements
  • Review current legal and ethical updates
  • Create a six point guideline for writing an intern agreement/contract
  • Develop a “Red Flag” Guideline list inclusive of five clinical emergencies
  • Identify the importance of recordkeeping and list three recommended documents to be kept on file for each supervisee
  • Identify four factors affecting the use of authority in supervision
  • Describe the collaborative – directive continuum of supervision
  • Define dual and multiple relationships, boundary crossings and violations, and name three techniques to identify them
  • Name three techniques that use the directive mode to ensure compliance with legal mandates and ethical codes

snipeCourses meet the qualifications for 6 hours of continuing education credit for LMFTs, LCSWs and LPCCs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences