Stricken language would be deleted from and underlined language would be added to present law.
Act 260 of the Regular Session
1 State of Arkansas As Engrossed: H2/13/23 S3/2/23
2 94th General Assembly A Bill
3 Regular Session, 2023 HOUSE BILL 1181
5 By: Representative Haak
6 By: Senator J. Boyd
8 For An Act To Be Entitled
13 Subtitle
20 SECTION 1. Arkansas Code Title 17, Chapter 27, is amended to add an
21 additional subchapter to read as follows:
22 Subchapter 5 - Counseling Compact
24 17-27-501. Text of compact.
25 The Counseling Compact is enacted into law and entered into by this
26 state with all states legally joining therein and in the form substantially
27 as follows:
29 Counseling Compact
32 The purpose of this Compact is to facilitate interstate practice of Licensed
33 Professional Counselors with the goal of improving public access to
34 Professional Counseling services. The practice of Professional Counseling
35 occurs in the State where the client is located at the time of the counseling
36 services. The Compact preserves the regulatory authority of States to protect
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1 public health and safety through the current system of State licensure.
2 This Compact is designed to achieve the following objectives:
3 A. Increase public access to Professional Counseling services by providing
4 for the mutual recognition of other Member State licenses;
5 B. Enhance the States ability to protect the publics health and safety;
6 C. Encourage the cooperation of Member States in regulating multistate
7 practice for Licensed Professional Counselors;
8 D. Support spouses of relocating Active Duty Military personnel;
9 E. Enhance the exchange of licensure, investigative, and disciplinary
10 information among Member States;
11 F. Allow for the use of Telehealth technology to facilitate increased access
12 to Professional Counseling services;
13 G. Support the uniformity of Professional Counseling licensure requirements
14 throughout the States to promote public safety and public health benefits;
15 H. Invest all Member States with the authority to hold a Licensed
16 Professional Counselor accountable for meeting all State practice laws in the
17 State in which the client is located at the time care is rendered through the
18 mutual recognition of Member State licenses;
19 I. Eliminate the necessity for licenses in multiple States; and
20 J. Provide opportunities for interstate practice by Licensed Professional
21 Counselors who meet uniform licensure requirements.
24 As used in this Compact, and except as otherwise provided, the following
25 definitions shall apply:
26 A. Active Duty Military means full-time duty status in the active
27 uniformed service of the United States, including members of the National
28 Guard and Reserve on active duty orders pursuant to 10 U.S.C. Chapters 1209
29 and 1211.
30 B. Adverse Action means any administrative, civil, equitable or criminal
31 action permitted by a States laws which is imposed by a licensing board or
32 other authority against a Licensed Professional Counselor, including actions
33 against an individuals license or Privilege to Practice such as revocation,
34 suspension, probation, monitoring of the licensee, limitation on the
35 licensees practice, or any other Encumbrance on licensure affecting a
36 Licensed Professional Counselors authorization to practice, including
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1 issuance of a cease and desist action.
2 C. Alternative Program means a non-disciplinary monitoring or practice
3 remediation process approved by a Professional Counseling Licensing Board to
4 address Impaired Practitioners.
5 D. Continuing Competence/Education means a requirement, as a condition of
6 license renewal, to provide evidence of participation in, and/or completion
7 of, educational and professional activities relevant to practice or area of
8 work.
9 E. Counseling Compact Commission or Commission means the national
10 administrative body whose membership consists of all States that have enacted
11 the Compact.
12 F. Current Significant Investigative Information means:
13 1. Investigative Information that a Licensing Board, after a
14 preliminary inquiry that includes notification and an opportunity for the
15 Licensed Professional Counselor to respond, if required by State law, has
16 reason to believe is not groundless and, if proved true, would indicate more
17 than a minor infraction; or
18 2. Investigative Information that indicates that the Licensed
19 Professional Counselor represents an immediate threat to public health and
20 safety regardless of whether the Licensed Professional Counselor has been
21 notified and had an opportunity to respond.
22 G. Data System means a repository of information about Licensees,
23 including, but not limited to, continuing education, examination, licensure,
24 investigative, Privilege to Practice and Adverse Action information.
25 H. Encumbered License means a license in which an Adverse Action restricts
26 the practice of licensed Professional Counseling by the Licensee and said
27 Adverse Action has been reported to the National Practitioners Data Bank
28 (NPDB).
29 I. Encumbrance means a revocation or suspension of, or any limitation on,
30 the full and unrestricted practice of Licensed Professional Counseling by a
31 Licensing Board.
32 J. Executive Committee means a group of directors elected or appointed to
33 act on behalf of, and within the powers granted to them by, the Commission.
34 K. Home State means the Member State that is the Licensees primary State
35 of residence.
36 L. Impaired Practitioner means an individual who has a condition(s) that
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1 may impair their ability to practice as a Licensed Professional Counselor
2 without some type of intervention and may include, but are not limited to,
3 alcohol and drug dependence, mental health impairment, and neurological or
4 physical impairments.
5 M. Investigative Information means information, records, and documents
6 received or generated by a Professional Counseling Licensing Board pursuant
7 to an investigation.
8 N. Jurisprudence Requirement if required by a Member State, means the
9 assessment of an individuals knowledge of the laws and Rules governing the
10 practice of Professional Counseling in a State.
11 O. Licensed Professional Counselor means a counselor licensed by a Member
12 State, regardless of the title used by that State, to independently assess,
13 diagnose, and treat behavioral health conditions.
14 P. Licensee means an individual who currently holds an authorization from
15 the State to practice as a Licensed Professional Counselor.
16 Q. Licensing Board means the agency of a State, or equivalent, that is
17 responsible for the licensing and regulation of Licensed Professional
18 Counselors.
19 R. Member State means a State that has enacted the Compact.
20 S. Privilege to Practice means a legal authorization, which is equivalent
21 to a license, permitting the practice of Professional Counseling in a Remote
22 State.
23 T. Professional Counseling means the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment
24 of behavioral health conditions by a Licensed Professional Counselor.
25 U. Remote State means a Member State other than the Home State, where a
26 Licensee is exercising or seeking to exercise the Privilege to Practice.
27 V. Rule means a regulation promulgated by the Commission that has the
28 force of law.
29 W. Single State License means a Licensed Professional Counselor license
30 issued by a Member State that authorizes practice only within the issuing
31 State and does not include a Privilege to Practice in any other Member State.
32 X. State means any state, commonwealth, district, or territory of the
33 United States of America that regulates the practice of Professional
34 Counseling.
35 Y. Telehealth means the application of telecommunication technology to
36 deliver Professional Counseling services remotely to assess, diagnose, and
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1 treat behavioral health conditions.
2 Z. Unencumbered License means a license that authorizes a Licensed
3 Professional Counselor to engage in the full and unrestricted practice of
4 Professional Counseling.
7 A. To Participate in the Compact, a State must currently:
8 1. License and regulate Licensed Professional Counselors;
9 2. Require Licensees to pass a nationally recognized exam
10 approved by the Commission;
11 3. Require Licensees to have a 60 semester-hour (or 90 quarter-
12 hour) masters degree in counseling or 60 semester-hours (or 90 quarter-
13 hours) of graduate course work including the following topic areas:
14 a. Professional Counseling Orientation and Ethical
15 Practice;
16 b. Social and Cultural Diversity;
17 c. Human Growth and Development;
18 d. Career Development;
19 e. Counseling and Helping Relationships;
20 f. Group Counseling and Group Work;
21 g. Diagnosis and Treatment; Assessment and Testing;
22 h. Research and Program Evaluation; and
23 i. Other areas as determined by the Commission.
24 4. Require Licensees to complete a supervised postgraduate
25 professional experience as defined by the Commission;
26 5. Have a mechanism in place for receiving and investigating
27 complaints about Licensees.
28 B. A Member State shall:
29 1. Participate fully in the Commissions Data System, including
30 using the Commissions unique identifier as defined in Rules;
31 2. Notify the Commission, in compliance with the terms of the
32 Compact and Rules, of any Adverse Action or the availability of Investigative
33 Information regarding a Licensee;
34 3. Implement or utilize procedures for considering the criminal
35 history records of applicants for an initial Privilege to Practice. These
36 procedures shall include the submission of fingerprints or other biometric-
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1 based information by applicants for the purpose of obtaining an applicants
2 criminal history record information from the Federal Bureau of Investigation
3 and the agency responsible for retaining that States criminal records;
4 a. A member state must fully implement a criminal
5 background check requirement, within a time frame established by rule, by
6 receiving the results of the Federal Bureau of Investigation record search
7 and shall use the results in making licensure decisions.
8 b. Communication between a Member State, the Commission
9 and among Member States regarding the verification of eligibility for
10 licensure through the Compact shall not include any information received from
11 the Federal Bureau of Investigation relating to a federal criminal records
12 check performed by a Member State under Public Law 92-544.
13 4. Comply with the Rules of the Commission;
14 5. Require an applicant to obtain or retain a license in the
15 Home State and meet the Home States qualifications for licensure or renewal
16 of licensure, as well as all other applicable State laws;
17 6. Grant the Privilege to Practice to a Licensee holding a valid
18 Unencumbered License in another Member State in accordance with the terms of
19 the Compact and Rules; and
20 7. Provide for the attendance of the States commissioner to the
21 Counseling Compact Commission meetings.
22 C. Member States may charge a fee for granting the Privilege to Practice.
23 D. Individuals not residing in a Member State shall continue to be able to
24 apply for a Member States Single State License as provided under the laws of
25 each Member State. However, the Single State License granted to these
26 individuals shall not be recognized as granting a Privilege to Practice
27 Professional Counseling in any other Member State.
28 E. Nothing in this Compact shall affect the requirements established by a
29 Member State for the issuance of a Single State License.
30 F. A license issued to a Licensed Professional Counselor by a Home State to
31 a resident in that State shall be recognized by each Member State as
32 authorizing a Licensed Professional Counselor to practice Professional
33 Counseling, under a Privilege to Practice, in each Member State.
36 A. To exercise the Privilege to Practice under the terms and provisions of
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1 the Compact, the Licensee shall:
2 1. Hold a license in the Home State;
3 2. Have a valid United States Social Security Number or National
4 Practitioner Identifier;
5 3. Be eligible for a Privilege to Practice in any Member State
6 in accordance with Section 4(D), (G) and (H);
7 4. Have not had any Encumbrance or restriction against any
8 license or Privilege to Practice within the previous two (2) years;
9 5. Notify the Commission that the Licensee is seeking the
10 Privilege to Practice within a Remote State(s);
11 6. Pay any applicable fees, including any State fee, for the
12 Privilege to Practice;
13 7. Meet any Continuing Competence/Education requirements
14 established by the Home State;
15 8. Meet any Jurisprudence Requirements established by the Remote
16 State(s) in which the Licensee is seeking a Privilege to Practice; and
17 9. Report to the Commission any Adverse Action, Encumbrance, or
18 restriction on license taken by any non-Member State within 30 days from the
19 date the action is taken.
20 B. The Privilege to Practice is valid until the expiration date of the Home
21 State license. The Licensee must comply with the requirements of Section 4(A)
22 to maintain the Privilege to Practice in the Remote State.
23 C. A Licensee providing Professional Counseling in a Remote State under the
24 Privilege to Practice shall adhere to the laws and regulations of the Remote
25 State.
26 D. A Licensee providing Professional Counseling services in a Remote State
27 is subject to that States regulatory authority. A Remote State may, in
28 accordance with due process and that States laws, remove a Licensees
29 Privilege to Practice in the Remote State for a specific period of time,
30 impose fines, and/or take any other necessary actions to protect the health
31 and safety of its citizens. The Licensee may be ineligible for a Privilege to
32 Practice in any Member State until the specific time for removal has passed
33 and all fines are paid.
34 E. If a Home State license is encumbered, the Licensee shall lose the
35 Privilege to Practice in any Remote State until the following occur:
36 1. The Home State license is no longer encumbered; and
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1 2. Have not had any Encumbrance or restriction against any
2 license or Privilege to Practice within the previous two (2) years.
3 F. Once an Encumbered License in the Home State is restored to good
4 standing, the Licensee must meet the requirements of Section 4(A) to obtain a
5 Privilege to Practice in any Remote State.
6 G. If a Licensees Privilege to Practice in any Remote State is removed, the
7 individual may lose the Privilege to Practice in all other Remote States
8 until the following occur:
9 1. The specific period of time for which the Privilege to
10 Practice was removed has ended;
11 2. All fines have been paid; and
12 3. Have not had any Encumbrance or restriction against any
13 license or Privilege to Practice within the previ