California law strictly guarantees your right to a confidential relationship with me. As your therapist, I am legally prohibited from revealing to another person that you are in therapy with me, nor can I reveal what you have said in any way that identifies you without your written permission. There are some instances however, in which your right to confidentiality must be set aside as required by law or professional guidelines. These include the following:
a. Instances of suspected abuse or neglect of a child, an elder, or a dependent adult must be reported to the appropriate protective services agency.
b. If I have a reason to believe that you as a client pose an imminent danger of violence to another person, I must take steps to protect who may be in danger.
c. If a court has ordered your treatment with me, or if I am served with a subpoena, I may be required to release information to the court, or may have to appear in court.
d. Finally, if you as a client reveal a serious intent to harm yourself, or if you become unable to care for yourself such that you may become a danger to yourself, I am ethically bound to do what I can to help keep you safe, which may involve notifying others who may be of help.
In all of the above cases, I would release only that information necessary to appropriately carry out my responsibilities. Your confidentiality remains an ethical priority.