Marriage and Family Counselors' Perceived Ethical Issues Related to Online Therapy

Document Type



Technology use in the practice of couple and family therapy has many advantages. The use of online and technology-based modes of communication for therapy, however, presents several valid ethical concerns. In a survey of 226 licensed Marriage and Family Counselors, students, and supervisors, participants were asked to identify ethical concerns and drawbacks of online therapy. Five themes related to this topic emerged: (a) confidentiality, (b) impact to the therapeutic relationship, (c) licensing and liability issues, (d) issues related to crises and risky clinical situations, and (e) training and education. Implications for practice, training, and research are discussed.


Marriage and Family Therapy and Counseling