LPCC vs. LMFT: The Benefits of Dual Licensure as a Marriage Family Therapist and Professional Clinical Counselor
Psychology graduates who are interested in building their industry credibility may consider pursuing licensure as both a marriage family therapist (LMFT) and a professional clinical counselor (LPCC). The “stamp of approval” that goes along with these licenses can also benefit psychologists as they seek to move to new jobs within the mental health profession.
LMFTs help individuals to cope with life situations and stress—assisting them with growth and changing behavior to make stronger decisions. LPCCs work with individuals to help them grow within a marriage and/or family situation. Combining these skills and certifications can help psychologists to better assists clients whose needs fall into both areas—individual and family.
According to the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy – California Division, (AAMFTCA), psychologists can use “the LPCC to promote their professional identity. Further, LPCCs who travel to other states may find one of the licenses more portable and viable in that state.”
Additionally, having both licenses exemplifies a high level of ethical standards. “Dually licensed clinicians who are members of both ACA and AAMFT would be responsible to the ethical codes of both professional associations.”
Dual licensure supports the fact a person holding the licenses has the background needed to pass both licenses’ rigorous testing requirements. And it can give an edge when working for or with the federal government.
According to AAMFTCA, the federal government similarly recognizes both licenses. “MFTs and LPCs have similar recognition at the federal level. The Public Health Services Act recognizes MFTs as a core mental health profession. This recognition is not granted to LPCCs, however, both MFTs and LPCCs are defined as behavioral and mental health professionals through the National Health Service Corps.”
Individuals holding LMFT licensure are recognized by the Department of Transportation Substance Abuse Program, Minority Fellowship Program, and TRICARE—these programs exclude LPCs as independent providers. However LPCCs, and not LMFTs, are specifically named in the No Child Left Behind Act. “Both professions are working independently and collaboratively to open all federal programs to their disciplines,” states AAMFTCA.
Learn more about the psychology programs at Argosy University’s campus online and on ground campuses across the country by visiting www.argosy.edu/colleges/counseling-psychology-and-social-sciences-4 .
Argosy University does not guarantee third-party certification/licensure. Outside agencies control the requirements for taking and passing certification/licensing exams and are subject to change without notice to Argosy University.