Utah Becomes Sixth State to Sign Interstate Counseling Compact into Law

Mar 28, 2022
The American Counseling Association and licensed professional counselors nationwide are celebrating the signing of Utah State Bill 237 in support of the Counseling Compact, which will authorize counselors to practice across state lines once enacted.

The dream of many licensed professional counselors to practice across state lines took one more step forward when Governor Spencer Cox signed into law his state’s Counseling Compact legislation.

This milestone represents the sixth of 10 states needed to enact the Counseling Compact allowing professional counselors licensed and residing in a compact member state to practice in other compact member states without the need for multiple licenses.  

“We are appreciative of the Utah Legislature’s passage and Governor Cox’s signing of this important piece of legislation that will help to address key mental health provider shortages around the country and in states like Utah,” said S. Kent Butler, ACA President. 

Funded and created by the American Counseling Association, the Counseling Compact was finalized in December 2020 and has now been passed by the legislatures in Georgia, Maryland, Alabama, Mississippi, West Virginia and Utah. Currently, the Counseling Compact has been introduced in 19 states this legislative session. There are two additional states where the legislation is currently being drafted. 

Compacts provide a pathway for counselors to move seamlessly from one state to another through an agreement among states to recognize another state’s license. Currently, counselors have difficulty transferring their licenses from one state/jurisdiction to another because of the independent nature of jurisdictional licensing rules and regulations. There is little consistency regarding the requirements for licensure and these varying requirements make it difficult to transfer one’s license. 

ACA anticipates reaching the ten-state threshold necessary to trigger the establishment of the public commission by the end of the calendar year. Once 10 states have enacted the legislation, the compact will go into effect, enabling professional counselors who meet uniform licensure requirements to quickly obtain a privilege to practice, which is equivalent to a license to practice counseling in another state.  

For more information, please visit CounselingCompact.org

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