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Introduced Version House Bill 2530 History

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hb2530 intr
H. B. 2530


          (By Delegates Perdue, Perry, Eldridge,
           Ellington, Lawrence, Morgan and Staggers)
          [Introduced February 19, 2013; referred to the
          Committee on Government Organization then the Judiciary.]



A BILL to amend and reenact §30-21-7 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931,as amended; to amend said code by adding thereto a new section, designated §30-30-30; to amend and reenact §30-31-8 and §30-31-9 of said code, all relating to reciprocity for psychologists, social workers, professional counselors and marriage and family therapists; and granting those professionals licensure to practice in the state provided certain conditions are met.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
     That §30-21-7 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted; that said code be amended by adding thereto a new section, designated §30-30-30; and that §30-31-8 and §30-31-9 of said code be amended and reenacted, all to read as follows:
ARTICLE 21. PSYCHOLOGISTS; SCHOOL PSYCHOLOGISTS.
§30-21-7. Qualifications of applicants; exceptions; applications; fee.
                                            (a) To be eligible for a license to engage in the practice of psychology, the applicant must shall:
                                            (1) Be at least eighteen years of age;
                                            (2) Be of good moral character;
                                            (3) Be a holder of a doctor of philosophy degree or its equivalent or a master's degree in psychology from an accredited institution of higher learning, with adequate course study at such institution in psychology, the adequacy of any such course study to be determined by the board;
                                            (4) When the degree held is a doctor of philosophy degree or its equivalent, have at least one year's experience subsequent to receiving said degree in the performance of any of the psychological services described in subdivision (e), section two of this article, including those activities excluded from the definition of the term "practice of psychology" in said subdivision (e), and, when the degree held is a master's degree, have at least five years' experience subsequent to receiving said degree in the performance of any of the psychological services described in said subdivision (e), including those activities excluded from the definition of the term "practice of psychology" in said subdivision (e);
                                            (5) Have passed the examination prescribed by the board, which examination shall cover the basic subject matter of psychology and psychological skills and techniques;
                                            (6) Not have been convicted of a felony or crime involving moral turpitude; and
                                            (7) Not, within the next preceding six months, have taken and failed to pass the examination required by subdivision (5), subsection (a) of this section.
                                            (b) The following persons shall be eligible for a license to engage in the practice of psychology without examination:
                                            (1) Any applicant who holds a doctor of philosophy degree or its equivalent from an institution of higher learning, with adequate course study at such institution in psychology and who is a diplomate of the "American Board of Examiners in Professional Psychology"; and
                                            (2) Any person who holds a license or certificate to engage in the practice of psychology issued by any other state, the requirements for which license or certificate are found by the board to be at least as great as those provided in this article in another jurisdiction
who has practiced psychology for a minimum of five years and who is not currently facing, nor has been subject to, disciplinary action.
                                            (c) Any person who is engaged in the practice of psychology in this state, or is engaged in any of the activities described in subdivision (e), (1), (2) or (3), section two of this article, in this state, on the effective date of this article and has been so engaged for a period of two consecutive years immediately prior thereto shall be eligible for a license to engage in the practice of psychology without examination and without meeting the requirements of subdivision (4), subsection (a) of this section, if application for such license is made within six months after the effective date of this article and if such person meets the requirements of subdivisions (1), (2), (3) and (6), subsection (a) of this section: Provided, That an equivalent of a master's degree in psychology may be considered by the board, only for the purpose of this subsection (c), as meeting the requirements of subdivision (3), subsection (a) of this section.
                                            (d) Any applicant for any such license shall submit an application therefor at such time (subject to the time limitation set forth in subsection (c) of this section), in such manner, on such forms and containing such information as the board may from time to time by reasonable rule and regulation prescribe, and pay to the board an application fee.
ARTICLE 30. SOCIAL WORKERS.
§30-30-30. Reciprocity for licensed social workers in other __________states; requirements.
__________Any person authorized to practice as an independent clinical social worker, certified social worker, licensed graduate social worker or social worker in another jurisdiction who has practiced in his or her disciplinary field for a minimum of five years and who is not currently facing, nor has been subject to, disciplinary action by a licensure board during the preceding five years shall be granted licensure in this state to practice in his or her respective field.

ARTICLE 31. LICENSED PROFESSIONAL COUNSELORS.
§30-31-8. Requirements for license to practice counseling.
          (a) To be eligible for a license to practice professional counseling, an applicant must:
          (1) Be of good moral character;
          (2) Be at least eighteen years of age;
          (3) Be a citizen of the United States or be eligible for employment in the United States;
          (4) Pay the applicable fee;
          (5)(A)(i) Have earned a master's degree in an accredited counseling program or in a field closely related to an accredited counseling program as determined by the board, or have received training equivalent to such degree as may be determined by the board; and
          (ii) Have at least two years of supervised professional experience in counseling of such a nature as is designated by the board after earning a master's degree or equivalent; or
          (B)(i) Have earned a doctorate degree in an accredited counseling program or in a field closely related to an accredited counseling program as determined by the board, or have received training equivalent to such degree as may be determined by the board; and
          (ii) Have at least one year of supervised professional experience in counseling of such a nature as is designated by the board after earning a doctorate degree or equivalent;
          (6) Have passed a standardized national certification examination in counseling approved by the board;
          (7) Not have been convicted of a felony or crime involving moral turpitude under the laws of any jurisdiction:
          (A) If the applicant has never been convicted of a felony or a crime involving moral turpitude, the applicant shall submit letters of recommendation from three persons not related to the applicant and a sworn statement from the applicant stating that he or she has never been convicted of a felony or a crime involving moral turpitude; or
          (B) If the applicant has been convicted of a felony or a crime involving moral turpitude, it is a rebuttable presumption that the applicant is unfit for licensure unless he or she submits competent evidence of sufficient rehabilitation and present fitness to perform the duties of a licensed professional counselor as may be established by the production of:
          (i) Documentary evidence including a copy of the relevant release or discharge order, evidence showing compliance with all conditions of probation or parole, evidence showing that at least one year has elapsed since release or discharge without subsequent conviction, and letters of reference from three persons who have been in contact with the applicant since his or her release or discharge; and
          (ii) Any collateral evidence and testimony as may be requested by the board which shows the nature and seriousness of the crime, the circumstances relative to the crime or crimes committed and any mitigating circumstances or social conditions surrounding the crime or crimes and any other evidence necessary for the board to judge present fitness for licensure or whether licensure will enhance the likelihood that the applicant will commit the same or similar offenses;
          (8) Not be an alcohol or drug abuser as these terms are defined in section eleven, article one-a, chapter twenty-seven of this code: Provided, That an applicant who has had at least two continuous years of uninterrupted sobriety in an active recovery process, which may, in the discretion of the board, be evidenced by participation in a twelve-step program or other similar group or process, may be considered; and
          (9) Has fulfilled any other requirement specified by the board.
          (b) A person who holds a license or other authorization to practice counseling issued by another state, the qualifications for which license or other authorization are determined by the board to be at least substantially equivalent to the license requirements in this article, is eligible for licensure. Any person authorized to practice professional counseling in another jurisdiction who has practiced professional counseling for a minimum of five years and who is not currently facing, nor has been subject to, disciplinary action by a licensure board during the preceding five years shall be granted licensure in this state to practice professional counseling.
          (c) A person seeking licensure under the provisions of this section shall submit an application on a form prescribed by the board and pay all applicable fees.
          (d) A person who has been continually licensed under this article since 1987, pursuant to prior enactments permitting waiver of certain examination and other requirements, is eligible for renewal under the provisions of this article.
          (e) A license to practice professional counseling issued by the board prior to July 1, 2009, shall for all purposes be considered a license issued under this article: Provided, That a person holding a license issued prior to July 1, 2009, must renew the license pursuant to the provisions of this article.
§30-31-9. Requirements for a license to practice marriage and family therapy.
  (a) To be eligible for a license to practice marriage and family therapy, an applicant must:
  (1) Be of good moral character;
  (2) Be at least eighteen years of age;
  (3) Be a citizen of the United States or be eligible for employment in the United States;
  (4) Pay the applicable fee;
  (5)(A)(i) Have earned a master's degree in marriage and family therapy from a program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education, the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Education Programs, or a comparable accrediting body as approved by the board, or in a field closely related to an accredited marriage and family therapy program as determined by the board, or have received training equivalent to such degree as may be determined by the board; and
  (ii) Have at least two years of supervised professional experience in marriage and family therapy of such a nature as is designated by the board after earning a master's degree or equivalent; or
  (B) (i) Have earned a doctorate degree in marriage and family therapy from a program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Marriage and Family Therapy Education, the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Education Programs, or a comparable accrediting body as approved by the board, or in a field closely related to an accredited marriage and family therapy program as determined by the board, or have received training equivalent to such degree as may be determined by the board; and
  (ii) Have at least one year of supervised professional experience in marriage and family therapy of such a nature as is designated by the board after earning a doctorate degree or equivalent;
  (6) Have passed a standardized national certification examination in marriage and family therapy as approved by the board;
  (7) Not have been convicted of a felony or crime involving moral turpitude under the laws of any jurisdiction:
  (A) If the applicant has never been convicted of a felony or a crime involving moral turpitude, the applicant shall submit letters of recommendation from three persons not related to the applicant and a sworn statement from the applicant stating that he or she has never been convicted of a felony or a crime involving moral turpitude; or
  (B) If the applicant has been convicted of a felony or a crime involving moral turpitude, it is a rebuttable presumption that the applicant is unfit for licensure unless he or she submits competent evidence of sufficient rehabilitation and present fitness to perform the duties of a person licensed to practice marriage and family therapy as may be established by the production of:
  (i) Documentary evidence including a copy of the relevant release or discharge order, evidence showing compliance with all conditions of probation or parole, evidence showing that at least one year has elapsed since release or discharge without subsequent conviction, and letters of reference from three persons who have been in contact with the applicant since his or her release or discharge; and
  (ii) Any collateral evidence and testimony as may be requested by the board which shows the nature and seriousness of the crime, the circumstances relative to the crime or crimes committed and any mitigating circumstances or social conditions surrounding the crime or crimes, and any other evidence necessary for the board to judge present fitness for licensure or whether licensure will enhance the likelihood that the applicant will commit the same or similar offenses;
  (8) Not be an alcohol or drug abuser as these terms are defined in section eleven, article one-a, chapter twenty-seven of this code: Provided, That an applicant who has had at least two continuous years of uninterrupted sobriety in an active recovery process, which may, in the discretion of the board, be evidenced by participation in a twelve-step program or other similar group or process, may be considered; and
  (9) Has fulfilled any other requirement specified by the board.
  (b) A person who holds a license or other authorization to practice marriage and family therapy issued by another state, the qualifications for which license or other authorization are determined by the board to be at least substantially equivalent to the license requirements in this article, is eligible for licensure. Any person authorized to practice as a marriage and family therapist in another jurisdiction who has practiced as a marriage and family therapist for a minimum of five years and who is not currently facing, nor has been subject to, disciplinary action by a licensure board during the preceding five years shall be granted licensure in this state to practice as a marriage and family therapist.
  (c) A person seeking licensure under the provisions of this section shall submit an application on a form prescribed by the board and pay all applicable fees.
  (d) A person who is licensed for five years as of July 1, 2010 and has substantially similar qualifications as required by subdivision (1), (2), (3), (4), (5)(A)(i) or (5)(B)(i), (7) and (8) of subsection (a) of this section is eligible for a license to practice marriage and family therapy until July 1, 2012, and is eligible for renewal under section ten.
  NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to permit reciprocity for psychologists, social workers, professional counselors and marriage and family therapists. The bill grants those professionals licensure to practice in the state provided certain conditions are met.

  Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.

  
  §30-30-30 is new; therefore, it has been completely underscored.
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