Counselor Licensing Requirements Montana should be followed closely. We want to provide you with helpful links and information to keep you on the right path to gaining the appropriate counselor licensing in Montana. Follow this information carefully, and this will set you on the right path.
It is important to practice the counseling profession safely and effectively in Montana.
The Board of Social Work Examiners and Professional Counselors licenses clinical professional counselors in Montana. If you want to become a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC), you will need to complete an appropriate Master’s level education and take an examination. You will also need to work under supervision before you can attain professional licensing.
The below information provides detailed information for counselor licensure in Montana. It is a good idea to contact the Board of Social Work Examiners and Professional Counselors if you have any questions and to verify you are on the right track.
Montana Counselor Credential Titles
Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC)
Monatana Counselor Education Requirements
A 60-semester-hour (or 90-quarter-hour) counseling-in-nature graduate degree from an accredited institution which includes specific coursework and a 6-semester-hour advanced counseling practicum.
Applicants may apply for licensure with a minimum of 45 semester hours (67.5 quarter hours) master’s degree in counseling which includes specific coursework and a 6 semester hour advanced counseling practicum. Applicants must complete the remaining hours within 5 years of the original application approval date. Applicants are not eligible for full licensure nor are they eligible to test until the hours are completed.
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3,000 hours of supervised counseling experience, 1,500 hours of which must be post-degree.
1,000 of the 1,500 hours must be direct client contact (250 can be a group). Must have 1 hour of supervision for every 20 hours.
Supervision must be under a licensed professional counselor or licensed allied mental health professional who has had 20 clock hours of supervision training and the agreement has been approved by the board.
Licensed as a professional counselor, social worker, psychologist, or psychiatrist. Supervisors must have board-approved supervision training, either 1 semester hour or 20 clock hours.
Requirements for Out of State Applicants
Licensure by reciprocity: If you hold a current, valid license in another state, and you have taken the exams given by Montana, you may apply for licensure in Montana without an exam. If you have not taken an examination to receive your current license, you will be asked to take the examination to become licensed in Montana.
1.) Montana has no formal signed reciprocal agreement with any state.
2.) All applications are reviewed on a case-by-case basis and formally approved by the board.
3.) If your state’s licensure requirements meet or exceed Montana’s you may be able to license in Montana without examination.
4.) You will need to complete the appropriate application forms for the board’s review and approval. This becomes the basis of your Montana Licensure file.
a. Other state application forms are not accepted in lieu of a completed Montana form.
b. The Supervisory Experience Forms are considered a part of the application and must be completed. If not, the application is considered incomplete and will not be reviewed by the board.
c. The Summary sheet in the Counselor Application Packet is also considered to be part of the application, and if not completed the application will not be reviewed by the board. The official transcript does not take the place of the Summary sheet.
d. All forms must be completed for review.
The candidate must also meet the following requirements:
(a) The candidate holds a valid and unrestricted license to practice as a licensed professional counselor or equivalent in another state or jurisdiction, which was issued under standards substantially equivalent to or greater than current standards in this state. Official written verification of such licensure status must be received by the board directly from the other state(s) or jurisdiction(s);
(b) The candidate holds a graduate degree that meets the requirements of 37-23-202, MCA, and shall supply a copy of the certified transcript sent directly from an accredited college, university or institution, and shall complete the degree summary sheet provided by the board;
(c) The candidate shall supply proof of successful completion of the National Counselor Examination (NCE) or another board-approved licensing examination. Candidate scores on the examination must be forwarded directly to the board; and
(d)(i) The candidate shall submit proof the candidate has previously completed 3,000 hours of supervised counseling practice as defined in 37-23-202, MCA. The candidate may verify the experience hours by affidavit, and need not supply a supervisor’s signature upon reasonable explanation of why the supervisor’s signature is unavailable to the candidate; OR
(ii) The candidate shall submit proof the candidate has been in continuous practice as a licensed professional counselor or equivalent in another jurisdiction for the two years immediately preceding the date of application in Montana.
Salary Expectations in Montana
For those looking to become a counselor in the state of Montana, the future looks bright. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average counselor in Montana brings home between $34,730 and $47,380 per year.
Now that you are familiar with the counselor licensing requirements in Montana, visit our How to Become a Counselor in Montana page for a more detailed look into the steps you will need to take to make your dream of becoming a counselor a reality.
Additional InformationMT Board of Social Work Examiners and Professional Counselors
301 South Park, 4th Floor
P.O. Box 200513
Helena, MT 59620
http://www.swpc.mt.gov/Application fee: $50
Initial License fee: $50
MT requires fingerprint and background checks of all applicants.