In accordance with professional ethics and California state law, any information shared in the context of professional counseling is considered confidential, and generally cannot be disclosed to anyone outside of the University Counseling Center (UCC), with the following exceptions:
- You (the client) give written authorization for the sharing of information.
- Your counselor believes that you are a danger to harm or kill yourself, or that you are gravely disabled. In this case, we may need to notify others who could assist in assuring your safety.
- Your counselor believes that you are a danger to harm another person or the property of another person. In this case the police, Campus Safety, and the person in danger would be notified by the UCC.
- Your counselor is informed of or suspects the abuse or potential abuse of any child. If you are under the age of 18 and report that you have been abused, we are required to report this information to the appropriate child protection agency. If you are over the age of 18 and report that you have been abused, and also report that the abuser currently has contact with children under the age of 18, we may also need to contact Child Protective Services (CPS).
- Your counselor is informed of or suspects the abuse or potential abuse of any elderly person or other dependent adult. These cases are also reported to the appropriate protective agency.
- Some staff members at the UCC are unlicensed, supervised counselors. In these cases, counseling information is discussed with a clinical supervisor employed by the UCC.
- The UCC keeps a confidential written record of treatment. A UCC file typically includes initial paperwork, brief session notes, records of client contacts and payments, and any other pertinent counseling-related information. This information is used as a basis for planning your care and treatment, monitoring your progress, and for research evaluating the quality and effectiveness of our services. In certain legally defined situations, our records may be subpoenaed, and we may be required to surrender them. The UCC makes reasonable attempts to contact current or former clients before releasing records in these situations.
- We may be required to disclose UCC records to authorized federal officials who are conducting national security and intelligence activities or providing protective services to the President of the United States or other important officials. By law we cannot reveal when we have disclosed such information to government officials.