Requirements for Counselors

Requirements for the VI Board of Licensed Counselors and Examiners

Purpose of Licensure:
To set standards of qualifications, education, training and experience for the practice of counseling. To promote high standards of professional performance for persons in the practice of counseling. To assure that everyone in the practice of counseling is licensed and adhere to the established, uniformed and coordinated rules and procedures.

Period of Licensure:
All permanent licenses are issued on an annual basis October 1 to September 30; and expires exactly two (2) years from the calendar year and month in which the license is issued.

Application Process:
Applications must be completed entirely and legible. The following are requirements per the respective discipline:

GENERAL REQUIREMENTS (Section 206):

  • Payment of Required Fees:
    1. $50.00 Non-Refundable Application Fee
    2. $250.00 Non-Refundable Background Check Fee
    3. $200.00 Licensed Substance Abuse Counselor (due upon approval)
    4. $200.00 Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (due upon approval)
    5. $200.00 Licensed Professional Counselor (due upon approval)
  • Two (2) 2x2 passport size photos of applicant; 
  • Copy of government-issued identification
  • Must be at least 21 years of age
  • Completed and notarized application;
    1. Dated and notarized Application
    2. Official clinical practicum
    3. Supervised Experience
    4. Professional Disclosure Statement
    5. Licenses and certifications
    6. Continuing Education Units (CEUs)
    7. Proof of malpractice liability insurance (to include telehealth coverage if providing services via telehealth)
  • Official college transcript identifying courses and degrees in the field of counseling should be sent directly from the institution to the Board;
    1. Masters and Doctorate Degree.  Certified transcripts accredited by US Dept of Education must be sent directly to the Board.
  • 3 References
    1. 1 Reference Letter on good moral character / moral turpitude
    2. 2 Professional Letters from someone in the field of counseling
  • Examinations. Evidence of passing National Certified Board Exam(s)
    1. LPC:
      1. NCE – National Counseling Exam; or,
      2. NCMHCE – National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Exam
    2. LSAC
      1. National or State approved Substance Abuse Examination; and,
      2. NCE – National Counseling Exam; or,
      3. NCMHCE – National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Exam
    3. LMFT
      1. AMFTRB MFT National Exam
  • Criminal Background Check

REQUIREMENTS FOR LICENSURE BY ENDORSEMENT (Section 217)

  • Payment of Required Fees:
    1. $50.00 Non-Refundable Application Fee
    2. $250.00 Non-Refundable Background Check Fee
    3. $200.00 Licensed Substance Abuse Counselor (due upon approval)
    4. $200.00 Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (due upon approval)
    5. $200.00 Licensed Professional Counselor (due upon approval)
  • Two (2) 2x2 passport size photos of applicant; 
  • Copy of government-issued identification;
  • Must be at least 21 years of age;
  • Completed and notarized application;
    1. Dated and notarized Application
    2. Professional Disclosure Statement
    3. Licenses and certifications
    4. Continuing Education Units (CEUs)
    5. Proof of malpractice liability insurance (to include telehealth coverage if providing services via telehealth)
  • Official college transcript identifying courses and degrees in the field of counseling should be sent directly from the institution to the Board;
    1. Masters and Doctorate Degree.  Certified transcripts accredited by US Dept of Education must be sent directly to the Board.
  • 3 References;
    1. 1 Reference Letter on good moral character / moral turpitude
    2. 2 Professional Letters from someone in the field of counseling
  • Examinations. Evidence of passing National Certified Board Exam(s);
    1. LPC:
      1. NCE – National Counseling Exam; or,
      2. NCMHCE – National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Exam
    2. LSAC
      1. National or State approved Substance Abuse Examination; and,
      2. NCE – National Counseling Exam; or,
      3. NCMHCE – National Clinical Mental Health Counseling Exam
    3. LMFT
      1. AMFTRB MFT National Exam
  • Criminal Background Check

LEVELS OF LICENSURE

  1. Licensed Substance Abuse Counselor / Substance Abuse / Psychotherapist (Section 207)
    • All criteria mentioned in section 206;
    • Education: a minimum of a master’s degree, with completion of a minimum of 60 graduate semester hours in counseling, including a master’s or doctoral degree, with graduate level coursework in each of the following:
      1. Counseling Theory & Practice
      2. Human Growth & Development
      3. Lifestyle & Career Development
      4. Group Dynamics, processes, counseling & consulting
      5. Appraisal/Assessment & Testing of Individuals
      6. Principles of diagnosis, treatment, planning & prevention of mental & emotional disorders & dysfunctional behavior
      7. Social & cultural foundation / Multi-cultural counseling
      8. Marriage and family counseling/therapy
      9. Research & program evaluation
      10. Professional orientation & ethics
      11. Coursework in the core areas relating to the treatment of clients for alcohol and/or drug abuse
    • Examination:
      1. Evidence of passing the NCE/NCMHCE and
      2. Evidence of passing a national/state approved substance abuse/addictions exam
    • Experience:
      1. 1,000-hour university sponsored practicum, internship or field experience
      2. 1,500 direct clinical hours of professional counseling (a combination of group and individual counseling), of which a minimum of 600 are in substance abuse counseling.
      3. 100 clinical supervision hours, obtained in no less than 2 years post-master’s

  2. Marriage and Family Therapist (Section 208)
    • All criteria mentioned in section 206;
    • Education: a minimum of a master’s degree, with completion of a minimum of 60 graduate semester hours, including a master’s or doctoral degree, with emphasis in marriage & family therapy, or a closely related field with graduate level coursework in each of the following:
      1. Dynamics of marriage & family systems
      2. General counseling theory & techniques
      3. Marriage therapy and counseling theory and techniques
      4. Family growth and development
      5. Social and cultural foundations of counseling
      6. Contextual dimensions of marriage & family therapy (social trends, family life cycle development stages, human sexuality, ethnic diversity, psychosocial theory, family origin & blended family)
      7. Psychopathology
      8. Appraisal/Assessment & Testing of Individuals
      9. Professional orientation & ethics
      10. Research & program evaluation
    • Examination:
      1. Evidence of passing the AMFTRB’s MFT National Exam
    • Experience:
      1. 1,000-hour university-sponsored practicum, internship or field experience.
      2. 1,500 direct clinical hours of marriage & family therapy
      3. 100 clinical supervision hours, obtained in no less than 2 years post-master’s

  3. Licensed Professional Counselor (Section 209)
    • All criteria mentioned in section 206;
    • Education: a minimum of a master’s degree, with completion of a minimum of 60 graduate semester hours in counseling, including a master’s or doctoral degree, with graduate level coursework in each of the following:
      1. Counseling Theory & Practice
      2. Human Growth & Development
      3. Lifestyle & Career Development
      4. Group Dynamics, processes, counseling & consulting
      5. Appraisal/Assessment & Testing of Individuals
      6. Principles of diagnosis, treatment, planning & prevention of mental & emotional disorders & dysfunctional behavior
      7. Social & cultural foundation / Multi-cultural counseling
      8. Marriage and family counseling/therapy
      9. Research & program evaluation
      10. Professional orientation & ethics
    • Examination:
      1. Evidence of Passing the NCE/NCMHCE
    • Experience:
      1. 1,000-hour university sponsored practicum, internship or field experience
      2. 1,500 direct clinical hours of professional counseling (a combination of group and individual counseling)
      3. 100 clinical supervision hours, obtained in no less than 2 years post-master’s

RENEWAL OF LICENSE:
In order to renew a professional license, visit the Department of Licensing and Consumer Affairs website ( www.dlca.vi.gov), and follow the simple steps in order to obtain a control number and choose your payment option.

CONTINUING EDUCATION UNITS (CEU) REQUIREMENT

For Licensed Professional Counselors & Licensed Marriage & Family Therapists a completion of 20 hours of CEUs, of which the following must be included: Ethics, HIPAA, Cultural Diversity/Sensitivity & Telehealth will be required for renewal.

For Licensed Substance Abuse Counselors a completion of 20 hours of CEUs, of which a minimum of 6 must be related to substance abuse /addiction, and the following must be included: Ethics, HIPAA, Cultural Diversity/Sensitivity & Telehealth will be required for renewal.

ALL APPLICANTS FOR ALL LEVELS OF LICENSURE MUST SATISFACTORILY PROVE TO THE BOARD THAT HE/SHE IS A PERSON WHO MERITS THE PUBLIC TRUST.

ABOUT TAKING THE EXAMINATION

Any person, holding a counselor’s degree applying to become a counselor is required to take an examination. All levels of examinations must be approved by the Board. The examination is available via computer at the Pearson Vue Testing Center.

To register, one can contact the NBCC at https://www.nbcc.org/licensure/examregistration

Nearest test center is at the following:
Pearson Professional Centers-St. Thomas VI
8000 Nisky Shopping Center
Suite 730, East Wing

St. Thomas, Virgin Islands 00802

Board Members:
Dr. Vincentia Paul-Constantine, Board Chair
Curtis Callendar, Secretary/Treasurer
Tamara Mohammed, Vice Chair
Patricia Towal, Board Member

Mailing Address: 
Attention:         H. Nathalie Hodge
Assistant Commissioner, Office of Boards and Commissions
V.I. Board of Licensed Counselors and Examiners
Department of Licensing and Consumer Affairs
Golden Rock Shopping Center, Suite #9
Christiansted, VI 00820-4311