Counseling Degrees & Licenses in Washington

Mental Health Counseling (LMHC) Licenses in Washington: Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC)

Licensing AuthorityEligibility & DetailsRenewal Requirements
Mental Health Counselors, Marriage and Family Therapists, and Social Workers Advisory Committee

Washington issues Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC) and Licensed Mental Health Counselor Associate (LMHCA) licenses.

Requirements for a LMHCA license include:

  • A completed application, including a social security number and a National Provider Identifier Number (NPI)
  • A $35 application fee
  • A master’s or doctorate in counseling from a regionally accredited institution. Graduates of CACREP programs will receive credit for 500 hours of post-graduate work experience and 50 hours of supervision. The program must include a practicum or internship
  • A Declaration Working Toward Licensure
  • Four hours of HIV/AIDS continuing education

To be licensed as an LMHC, candidates must already hold an LMHCA as well as:

  • Complete an application including a social security number and a National Provider Identifier Number (NPI)
  • Pay $191 application fee
  • Pass the NCE or NCMHCE
  • Provide proof of 36 hours of continuing education, six hours must be in professional ethics
  • Complete four hours of HIV/AIDS continuing education
  • Complete 3,000 hours and 36 months of post-graduate supervised work experience. Of those, 1,200 hours must be in direct client contact and 100 hours must be supervised. Graduates of CACREP programs will receive credit for 500 hours of post-graduate work experience and 50 hours of supervision.

In Washington, LMHCA and LMHC licenses must be renewed annually. LMHCA licenses may only be renewed six times and the fee is $25. LMHC license renewal fees are $106.

LMHCs are required to complete 36 continuing education hours every two years. Six of those hours must be in ethics.

School Counseling Licenses in Washington

Licensing AuthorityEligibility & DetailsRenewal Requirements
Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction

The Washington Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction issues Educational Staff Associate School Counselor Certificates.

The requirements for a first-time applicant are:

  • Have a master’s degree in counseling
  • Complete any state’s approved program leading to certification for the school counselor or have three years of experience as a school counselor
  • Pass the Praxis Professional School Counselor exam or the National Counselor Examination (NCE) of the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC)
  • Pass a background check that includes fingerprinting
  • Submit a completed application
  • Pay $64 application fee

To advance from a first-tier to s second-tier certificate, school counselors must:

  • Meet the requirements for the first tier
  • Hold a school counselor certificate issued by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS)
  • Complete an approved suicide prevention training
  • Complete issues of abuse course

The initial school counselor certificate issued in Washington is valid until two years of work experience have been completed. Counselors may then receive a reissued certificate that is valid for five years. A new background check is required.

A first-tier certificate must be renewed every five years. The requirements are:

  • Complete issues of abuse course
  • Submit a renewal application
  • Pay $64 fee
  • Complete 100 hours of continuing education

A second-tier certificate must be renewed every five years. The requirements are:

  • Complete suicide prevention training
  • Submit a renewal application
  • Pay $64 fee
  • Complete 100 hours of continuing education.

Maintaining a current National Board for Professional Teaching Standards certificate meets the continuing education requirement.

Substance Abuse Counseling Licenses in Washington

Licensing AuthorityEligibility & DetailsRenewal Requirements

Washington State Department of Health

The Washington State Department of Health issues Substance Use Disorder Professional and Substance Use Disorder Professional Trainee licenses to substance abuse counselors.

Substance Use Disorder Professional Trainee license candidates must:

  • Submit a completed application
  • Pay $110 application fee
  • Provide a National Provider Identifier (NPI) from the Federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
  • Complete a declaration that the applicant is seeking the education and training requirements for the Substance Use Disorder Professional credential
  • Complete four hours of HIV/AIDS training
  • Submit a signed Attestation of Recovery form

Substance Use Disorder Professional license candidates must:

  • Pay $260 application fee and $295 initial license fee
  • Submit a completed application
  • Provide a National Provider Identifier (NPI) from the Federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
  • Complete four hours of HIV/AIDS training
  • Submit a signed Attestation of Recovery form
  • Have an associate’s degree or higher
  • Complete at least 45 quarter or 30 semester credits of education in alcohol and drug abuse.
  • Complete required supervised work experience (2,500 hours are required if the applicant has an associate degree, 2,000 hours if the applicant has a bachelor’s, and 1,500 is the applicant has a master’s)
  • Pass the NCAC level 2 exam from NAADAC or the AADC exam from the IC&RC

In place of work experience and an examination, candidates may submit proof of NAADAC or IC&RC certification.

Substance abuse counselor licenses in Washington must be renewed annually. Trainee license renewal fees are $90 while full license renewals cost $300.

Counselors must complete 40 hours of continuing education every two years. Of those hours four must be in ethics, three must be in suicide assessment training, and 14 in an approved topic area

Rehabilitation Counseling Licenses in Washington

Licensing AuthorityEligibility & DetailsRenewal Requirements

Mental Health Counselors, Marriage and Family Therapists, and Social Workers Advisory Committee

Rehabilitation counselors in Washington are either Licensed Mental Health Counselors (LMHC) or Licensed Mental Health Counselor Associates (LMHCA).

Requirements for a LMHCA license include:

  • A completed application, including a social security number and a National Provider Identifier Number (NPI)
  • A $35 application fee
  • A master’s or doctorate in counseling from a regionally accredited institution. Graduates of CACREP programs will receive credit for 500 hours of post-graduate work experience and 50 hours of supervision. The program must include a practicum or internship
  • A Declaration Working Toward Licensure
  • Four hours of HIV/AIDS continuing education

To be licensed as an LMHC, candidates must already hold an LMHCA as well as:

  • Complete an application including a social security number and a National Provider Identifier Number (NPI)
  • Pay $191 application fee
  • Pass the NCE or NCMHCE
  • Provide proof of 36 hours of continuing education, six hours must be in professional ethics
  • Complete four hours of HIV/AIDS continuing education
  • Complete 3,000 hours and 36 months of post-graduate supervised work experience. Of those, 1,200 hours must be in direct client contact and 100 hours must be supervised. Graduates of CACREP programs will receive credit for 500 hours of post-graduate work experience and 50 hours of supervision.

In Washington, LMHCA and LMHC licenses must be renewed annually. LMHCA licenses may only be renewed six times and the fee is $25. LMHC license renewal fees are $106.

LMHCs are required to complete 36 continuing education hours every two years. Six of those hours must be in ethics.

Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) Licenses in Washington

Licensing AuthorityEligibility & DetailsRenewal Requirements
Washington State Department of Health

The Washington State Department of Health credentials Licensed Behavior Analysts (LAB) and Licensed Assistant Behavior Analysts (LABA).

The requirements for LABA licensure include:

  • Submit an online application
  • Provide proof of ongoing supervision
  • Pay a $160 application fee
  • Complete four hours of HIV/AIDS training

Additionally, LABA candidates must hold a BCaBA certification or have a bachelor’s in behavior analysis or related field, as well as:

  • Complete 135 hours of instruction in behavior analysis
  • Complete 1,000 hours of supervised work experience (at least 5 percent of those hours must be under supervision)

The requirements for LAB licensure include:

  • Submit an online application
  • Pay a $250 application fee
  • Complete four hours of HIV/AIDS training

Additionally, LAB candidates must hold a BCBA certification or have a master’s in behavior analysis or related field, as well as:

  • Complete 250 hours of instruction in behavior analysis
  • Complete 1,500 hours of supervised work experience (at least 5 percent of those hours must be under supervision)

Behavior analyst licenses issued in Washington expire every two years on the license holder’s birthday. Renewal fees are $350 for LABs and $175 for LABAs. To renew, applicants may either provide proof of continued BACB certification or complete 32 hours of continuing education for LABs or 20 hours for LABAs. Four hours must be in ethics.

Marriage and Family Therapy Licenses in Washington

Licensing AuthorityEligibility & DetailsRenewal Requirements
Mental Health Counselors, Marriage and Family Therapists, and Social Workers Advisory Committee

Washington issues Marriage and Family Therapist and Marriage and Family Therapist Associate licenses.

Requirements for a Marriage and Family Therapist Associate license include:

  • A completed application including a social security number and a National Provider Identifier Number (NPI)
  • An $81 application fee
  • A master’s or doctorate in marriage and family therapy from a regionally accredited institution of at least 45 semester hours or 60 quarter hours, including a practicum (graduates of COAMFTE programs will receive credit for 500 hours of post-graduate work experience and 50 hours of supervision)
  • A Declaration Working Toward Licensure
  • Four hours of HIV/AIDS continuing education

To be licensed as a Marriage and Family Therapist, candidates must already hold Marriage and Family Therapist Associate license, as well as:

  • Complete an application including a social security number and a National Provider Identifier Number (NPI)
  • Pay $306 application and initial license fee
  • Pass the AMFTRB exam
  • Provide proof of 36 hours of continuing education, six hours must be in professional ethics
  • Complete four hours of HIV/AIDS continuing education
  • Complete 3,000 hours and 24 months of post-graduate supervised work experience (1,000 hours must be in direct client contact and 100 hours must be supervision)

Graduates of COAMFTE programs will receive credit for 500 hours of post-graduate work experience and 50 hours of supervision.

In Washington, marriage and family therapy licenses must be renewed annually. Associate licenses may only be renewed six times and the fee is $66. Marriage and Family Therapist license renewal fees are $196.

Marriage and Family Therapists are required to complete 36 continuing education hours every two years. Six of those hours must be in ethics.

Child (Pediatric) Behavioral Therapy Licenses in Washington

Licensing AuthorityEligibility & DetailsRenewal Requirements

Mental Health Counselors, Marriage and Family Therapists, and Social Workers Advisory Committee

Child therapists in Washington are either Licensed Mental Health Counselors (LMHC) or Licensed Mental Health Counselor Associates (LMHCA).

Requirements for a LMHCA license include:

  • A completed application, including a social security number and a National Provider Identifier Number (NPI)
  • A $35 application fee
  • A master’s or doctorate in counseling from a regionally accredited institution. Graduates of CACREP programs will receive credit for 500 hours of post-graduate work experience and 50 hours of supervision. The program must include a practicum or internship
  • A Declaration Working Toward Licensure
  • Four hours of HIV/AIDS continuing education

To be licensed as an LMHC, candidates must already hold an LMHCA as well as:

  • Complete an application including a social security number and a National Provider Identifier Number (NPI)
  • Pay $191 application fee
  • Pass the NCE or NCMHCE
  • Provide proof of 36 hours of continuing education, six hours must be in professional ethics
  • Complete four hours of HIV/AIDS continuing education
  • Complete 3,000 hours and 36 months of post-graduate supervised work experience. Of those, 1,200 hours must be in direct client contact and 100 hours must be supervised. Graduates of CACREP programs will receive credit for 500 hours of post-graduate work experience and 50 hours of supervision.

In Washington, LMHCA and LMHC licenses must be renewed annually. LMHCA licenses may only be renewed six times and the fee is $25. LMHC license renewal fees are $106.

LMHCs are required to complete 36 continuing education hours every two years. Six of those hours must be in ethics.

Counseling Schools & Licensure in Nearby States