RS 9:2800.2     

§2800.2.  Psychologist, psychiatrist, marriage and family therapist, licensed professional counselor, and social worker; limitation of liability

A. When a patient has communicated a threat of physical violence, which is deemed to be significant in the clinical judgment of the treating psychologist or psychiatrist, or marriage and family therapist, or licensed professional counselor, or social worker, against a clearly identified victim or victims, coupled with the apparent intent and ability to carry out such threat, the psychologist, licensed under R.S. 37:2351 through 2369, the medical psychologist, licensed under R.S. 37:1360.51 through 1360.72, the psychiatrist, licensed under R.S. 37:1261 through 1291, or the social worker, credentialed under R.S. 37:2701 through 2723, treating such patient and exercising reasonable professional judgment, shall not be liable for a breach of confidentiality for warning of such threat or taking precautions to provide protection from the patient's violent behavior.

B.  A psychologist's, psychiatrist's, or marriage and family therapist, or licensed professional counselor, or social worker's duty to warn or to take reasonable precautions to provide protection from violent behavior arises only under the circumstance specified in Subsection A of this Section.  This duty shall be discharged by the psychologist, psychiatrist, or marriage and family therapist, or licensed professional counselor, or social worker if the treating professional makes a reasonable effort to communicate the threat to the potential victim or victims and to notify law enforcement authorities in the vicinity of the patient's or potential victim's residence.

C.  No liability or cause of action shall arise against any psychologist, psychiatrist, or marriage and family therapist, or licensed professional counselor, or social worker based on an invasion of privacy or breach of confidentiality for any confidence disclosed to a third party in an effort to discharge the duty arising under Subsection A of this Section.

Acts 1986, No. 697, §1, eff. July 8, 1986; Acts 1987, No. 397, §1; Acts 1993, No. 764, §1, eff. June 22, 1993; Acts 2003, No. 870, §1; Acts 2009, No. 251, §2, eff. Jan. 1, 2010.

NOTE: SEE ACTS 1986, NO. 697, §2, REGARDING APPLICABILITY TO CAUSES OF ACTION ARISING AFTER JULY 8, 1986.