Beginning January 1, 2024, this version of the Standard is out-of-date. For the current version, visit the 2024 Standards document. This page will be updated to the current version in the coming months.

The client-therapist relationship is the foundation of psychotherapy. It is central to the provision of safe, effective and ethical care. Members are expected to conduct themselves professionally at all times, and to place client wellbeing at the forefront of the relationship.

Clients come to therapists with sensitive personal information, and must be able to trust their therapist with this information. It is the professional and legal responsibility of the member to ensure that client information is kept confidential, subject to the legal limits to confidentiality.

Members are required to obtain informed consent before working with a client, and to ensure that therapy is undertaken only if it is necessary or can be expected to benefit the client.

Clients sometimes look to their therapists to work in cooperation with their other health care providers. Members are expected to communicate with other health professionals who are treating and caring for their client, where the client consents to such sharing of information, and when such communication is necessary and is done in the client’s best interests.

In addition, members must ensure that clients understand their right to make a complaint to the College regarding a member’s professional conduct, and also, where to take such a complaint.