Subpoenas and How to Handle Them

Online Course Materials:    ArticlesArticles    AudiosVideos   ArticlesArticles   

All materials are available as audios with transcripts.

Developed by Ofer Zur, Ph.D.

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Course fulfills, fully or in part, the Ethics & Law requirements for psychologists in CA and for psychologists, social workers, counselors, and addiction counselors in other states. Verify requirements with your state board.

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This course is also offered as part of an Advanced Ethics Certificate Program of 68 CE Credit Hours.

General Course Description

Sooner or later in their careers, most psychotherapists and counselors are likely to receive a subpoena demanding that they send the records of a client to an attorney or the court. When receiving the subpoena, therapists often react with dread and respond with a fight or flight response. This means they either ignore the subpoena or immediately send the requested records. Either response may be illegal, unethical, counter clinical and ill advised.

This intermediate level course explains what subpoenas are, who may initiate them and, most importantly, how to respond to them. It will give therapists guidelines on how to respond to subpoenas.

This course includes one audio with transcript and one article. The audio covers the following areas: What is a subpoena? Who may initiate subpoenas? The importance of clients’ authorizations to release information; Therapists’ option of filing a motion to quash a subpoena; HIPAA and subpoenas and the confusion regarding the disclosure of Psychotherapy Notes; The highly volatile issue of subpoena of test records, test data, protocols and test kits; The USA Patriot Act and subpoenas; Jaffee v Redmond and concerns with confidentiality and disclosures; Codes of Ethics on confidentiality and disclosures; States’ laws on subpoenas; and finally Guidelines: How to Respond to a Subpoena. The second article covers responding to a subpoena and includes recommendations and a checklist for subpoenas and depositions. Additional resources and references are provided for further study, but they are not part of the course.

Educational Objectives:

    This course will teach the participant to

  • Differentiate between types of subpoenas.
  • Identify the legal and illegal issues that are involved in responding to subpoenas.
  • Summarize how the Patriot Act may affect disclosure of information.
  • Summarize how HIPAA law affects disclosure in general and the disclosure of Psychotherapy Notes in particular.

Course Syllabus:

  • The Dreaded Subpoena
  • What is a Subpoena?
  • Who May Initiate Subpoenas?
  • Clients’ Authorizations to Release Information
  • Motion to Quash a Subpoena
  • HIPAA and Subpoenas and Psychotherapy Notes
  • Subpoena of Test Records
  • The USA Patriot Act
  • Jaffee v Redmond
  • Codes of Ethics
  • State Law
  • Guidelines: How to Respond to a Subpoena
CE Badge Created with Sketch. 1 CE

Cost: $19.00

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