Why you'll love this course

It's OK to love animals and still wonder whether you should write that ESA letter for a client requesting one. This course gets specific: It differentiates ESAs from other service animals, details the legal context for ESAs, and addresses the concerns many therapists have about writing a letter, all without pushing a specific agenda either supporting or opposing ESAs.

Course description

Use of Emotional Support Animals has been rapidly increasing, prompting public skepticism and strict new airline rules. Still, clients frequently request ESA letters from their therapists. Ben Caldwell gives the legal background on ESAs, and discusses the ethical and practical considerations for therapists considering whether and when to write such letters. This course is primarily Law and Ethics content.

1 hour CE. Video format.

Learning objectives

By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Differentiate between pets, Emotional Support Animals, and Service Animals

  • Identify at least three ethical considerations for therapists debating whether to issue ESA letters

  • Describe their ESA policy, including the requirements that must be met before they will issue an ESA letter

Course Outline

  1. Background: Defining Emotional Support Animals
  2. Research
  3. Role of the Therapist
  4. Controversy
  5. Relevant Ethical Issues
  6. Disciplinary Actions
  7. Handling ESA Requests

View references for this course

Instructor

Benjamin Caldwell, PsyD

Benjamin Caldwell, PsyD

Education Director, SimplePractice Learning

Benjamin Caldwell, PsyD is a California Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (#42723). He currently serves as adjunct faculty for California State University Northridge in Los Angeles. He has taught at the graduate level for more than 15 years, primarily in Law and Ethics, and has written and trained extensively on ethical applications in mental health care. In addition to serving a three-year term on the AAMFT Ethics Committee, Dr. Caldwell served as the Chair of the Legislative and Advocacy Committee for AAMFT-California for 10 years. He served as Editor for the Users Guide to the 2015 AAMFT Code of Ethics and is the author of several books, including Saving Psychotherapy and Basics of California Law for LMFTs, LPCCs, and LCSWs.

Basics of California Law is a graduate textbook used around California that uses Emotional Support Animals as an example when considering the scope of practice and scope of competence questions.

User reviews

Very Informative

Neil Klatsky

As a 30 + year veteran therapist, I had a very limited understanding of an ESA. I would have been blindsided by a client if they had asked me for an ESA letter. This course nailed it on informing me and keeping me professionally updated on this m...

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As a 30 + year veteran therapist, I had a very limited understanding of an ESA. I would have been blindsided by a client if they had asked me for an ESA letter. This course nailed it on informing me and keeping me professionally updated on this matter.

Read Less

Great Information!

Tony Davis

I had recently been asked by a client to write and ESA letter, and denied the request, but then realized that I needed to know more about the ethics involved. This workshop supplied the information I need to make qualified decisions about this in ...

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I had recently been asked by a client to write and ESA letter, and denied the request, but then realized that I needed to know more about the ethics involved. This workshop supplied the information I need to make qualified decisions about this in the future.

Read Less

Additional Information

Format & Length:

Video format; Total running time 72 minutes

Topic Area:

Law and Ethics

Instructional Level:

Intermediate

Completion Requirements:

To obtain your CE certificate, you must progress through all course segments, complete a satisfaction survey, and obtain a score of 80% or higher on a course completion quiz.

Who Should Attend:

Counselors, clinical social workers, and marriage and family therapists.

Financial Support Statement:

SimplePractice Learning pays course presenters for their teaching. There is no other financial support for this course.

Conflict of Interest Statement:

There is no potential conflict of interest or outside commercial support for this course.

Refund Policy:

Click here to see our policies on attendance, refunds, grievances, and accessibility, and other frequently asked questions

NAADAC Approval Status:

This course is not part of our continuing education program approved through NAADAC. Click here to view our complete CE approval information, or check out our collection of NAADAC approved courses