Ethical, Legal, and Professional Issues in Counseling, 7th edition

Published by Pearson (May 4, 2024) © 2025

  • Theodore P. Remley University of Holy Cross , University of New Orleans
  • Barbara P. Herlihy University of New Orleans


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For courses in counseling.

An exploration of ethical, legal and professional challenges in counseling

Written by 2 counseling professors, 1 an attorney and the other an expert in ethics, Ethical, Legal and Professional Issues in Counseling walks readers through the challenges they will encounter in their careers. Case studies highlight common situations faced by counselors and give practical advice on how to resolve them.

The 7th Edition discusses the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in every chapter. Additional case studies, updated information on the use of technology, and expanded focus on multicultural, social justice and advocacy issues keep readers informed and up to date.

Hallmark features of this title

  • An integrated approach examines the counseling profession from both an ethical perspective and a legal viewpoint.
  • Concrete, practical guidelines for dealing effectively with some of the most pressing and difficult ethical and legal issues in the field of counseling.
  • Case studies of common situations and dilemmas that counseling practitioners encounter are presented in each chapter. Readers are encouraged to take a stance on the issues covered and discuss their reasoning with classmates.
  • Appendices include the most recent version of the ACA Code of Ethics as well as professional forms and agreements.

New and updated features of this title

  • NEW: Discussions of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic explore how every major ethical, legal and professional issue in counseling was affected. Each chapter highlights how professionals addressed the urgent shift to virtual counseling, supervision and teaching necessitated by the pandemic.
  • UPDATED/NEW: Additional case studies include situations related to virtual counseling, supervision and teaching. At the end of each case, the authors provide their expertise and best reasoning.
  • UPDATED/NEW: Information on the use of technology in counseling, supervision and teaching includes recent refereed journal articles.
  • UPDATED: Focus on multicultural, social justice and advocacy issues includes a discussion of the disproportionate toll of the COVID-19 pandemic on marginalized members of U.S. society.
  • UPDATED: Discussions on trauma-informed counseling address the expanding literature about the role of trauma in clients’ lives as well as the issues involved in trauma-focused counseling.

The LMS-Compatible Assessment Bank streamlines assignments and grading

  • NEW: Learning objective quizzes and application exercises are included in an LMS-compatible packaged file. Application exercises in each chapter use a short-answer format and issue a model response written by experts.

Features of Pearson+ eTextbook for the 7th Edition

  • NEW: Video Examples, including authentic client/counselor or counselor-to-counselor interactions, expand on principles or concepts in each chapter, helping put the reading into context. Thought-provoking questions are offered in the video captions to guide students’ thinking in applying the counseling advice provided in the chapter.
  • The Interactive Glossary lets students quickly build their professional vocabulary as they read.

Section 1: Foundations

  1. Introduction
  2. Professional Identity of Counselors
  3. Multiculturalism, Social Justice, Advocacy, and Values

Section 2: Issues

  1. Client Welfare and Informed Consent
  2. Confidentiality and Privileged Communication
  3. Records and Subpoenas
  4. Competence, Assessment, and Diagnosis
  5. Malpractice and Resolving Legal and Ethical Challenges
  6. Boundary Issues
  7. Technology in Counseling
  8. Counseling Children and Vulnerable Adults
  9. Counseling Families and Groups
  10. Professional Relationships, Private Practice, and Health Care Plans
  11. Issues in Counselor Education
  12. Supervision and Consultation
  13. Professional Writing, Conducting Research, and Publishing


  1. ACA Code of Ethics
  2. Counseling Disclosure and Agreement Forms
  3. Client Request Form to Transfer Records
  4. Client Permission Form to Record Counseling Session for Supervision Purposes
  5. Guidelines for Counseling Case Notes
  6. Clinical Supervision Model Agreement

About our authors

Theodore P. Remley, Jr., JD, PhD, is a professor of counseling and is the Booth-Bricker Endowed Professor at Our Lady of Holy Cross College in New Orleans, Louisiana. Dr. Remley holds a Ph.D. in Counselor Education from the University of Florida and a law degree (JD) from Catholic University in Washington, DC. He is a National Certified Counselor (NCC) and a member of Chi Sigma Iota. He is licensed as a Professional Counselor (LPC) in Virginia, Louisiana, and Mississippi, and is licensed to practice law in Virginia and Florida. He is licensed as a Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) in Louisiana. Dr. Remley is the author and coauthor of several articles, books, and book chapters related to legal and ethical issues in counseling. For more than a decade, he has directed very popular counselor institutes in Italy and Ireland, and in cooperation with the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC), in Bhutan, Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Malawi, Africa. Dr. Remley has been a school counselor and a college counselor and practiced law for 7 years. In the past, Dr. Remley has held full-time counseling faculty positions at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia; Mississippi State University; the University of New Orleans and Old Dominion University. Dr. Remley is a former Executive Director of the American Counseling Association. He has been named a fellow in the American Counseling Association.

Barbara Herlihy, PhD, LPC, NCC, is a University Research Professor. She earned her PhD in Counseling Psychology from Northwestern University and her MEd in Counseling from Miami University. She has experience as a school counselor, community mental health counselor, and counselor in private practice. She is a board-approved counselor supervisor in Louisiana. Prior to coming to UNO, she served on the faculty at University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, University of Houston-Clear Lake and Loyola University of New Orleans. Dr. Herlihy's research and teaching interests include ethical issues in counseling, multicultural counseling, feminist therapy and supervision. Her most recent books are  Ethical, Legal, and Professional Issues in Counseling (7th ed., 2023, with T. P. Remley), the  ACA Ethical Standards Casebook (7th ed., 2006, with G. Corey) and Boundary Issues in Counseling  (2nd. ed., 2006, with G. Corey). She is also the author or coauthor of more than 65 journal articles and book chapters. Dr. Herlihy has chaired the ACA Ethics Committee and has served on the ACA Ethics Code Revision Taskforce. She is a frequent presenter of seminars and workshops on ethics across the United States and internationally.

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