Before Filing Application…
All applicants must have current certification from the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC), Academy of Clinical Mental Health Counselors (ACMHC) or other certifying mental health organization acceptable to the Board. If you do not hold a current certification, you cannot qualify for Delaware licensure.
- If you hold a current Professional Counselor of Mental Health license in another jurisdiction (state, District of Columbia or U.S. territory), apply by reciprocity.
- If you do not hold a current Professional Counselor of Mental Health license in another jurisdiction, apply by certification.
Read all instructions carefully before completing and submitting your application. Failing to follow instructions may delay your licensure. All auxiliary forms you need are included with the application.
Requirements for All Applications
These items are required for all applications, regardless of whether you are applying by certification or reciprocity. If your application is not complete within six months of filing, it may be considered abandoned and discarded.
- Enclose the non-refundable processing fee by check or money order made payable to the “State of Delaware.” If you hold an active Delaware Associate Counselor of Mental Health license and are applying for upgrade to a Professional Counselor license, enclose the upgrade fee instead of the full processing fee.
- Complete the Criminal History Record Check Authorization form to request State of Delaware and Federal Bureau of Investigation criminal background checks. Follow the instructions on the authorization form to arrange to be fingerprinted.
- Arrange for the Board office to receive a verification of licensure from each jurisdiction (state, U.S. territory, District of Columbia ) where you now hold, or have ever held, a license to practice as a mental health professional. You may use the Verification of Licensure form included with the application to request the verification.
- Arrange for the Board office to receive verification of your examination scores and certification as follows:
- If you are certified by the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) or the Academy of Clinical Mental Health Counselors (ACMHC), follow the instructions for requesting score verifications on the NBCC website at www.nbcc.org .
- If you are certified by another national mental health specialty, arrange for the Board office to receive a National Certifying Organization Certification Form sent directly from the certifying organization to the Board office. Follow the instructions on the form. Note that the organization must be acceptable to the Board. For more information on certifying organizations, see Section 188.8.131.52 of the Board’s Rules and Regulations.
You must hold current certification from the NBCC, ACMHC or other certifying mental health organization acceptable to the Board even if you are applying by reciprocity.
Additional Requirements for Applications by Certification
When applying by certification instead of reciprocity, you must submit documentation of your mental health counseling education and post-Masters mental health counseling experience in addition to the requirements listed above. Both you and your supervisor(s) should carefully follow the instructions for completing the required forms. Incomplete or incorrectly completed forms delay processing of your application. A resume will not be accepted in lieu of or in addition to the forms.
- Arrange for the Board office to receive an official transcript showing your completed graduate degree, sent directly from the college/university to the Board office.
- If you have 30 post-Masters credit hours in the field of counseling, arrange for the Board office to receive an official transcript showing these graduate credits, sent directly from the school(s) to the Board office. You may substitute these credit hours for up to 1,600 of the 3,200 hours of post-Masters mental health counseling experience that are required. See Post-Masters Mental Health Counseling Experience Requirements for more information.
- To verify the minimum 1,600 hours of direct supervision, arrange for the Board office to receive one or more Direct Supervision Reference forms completed and signed by your approved clinical supervisor(s). The supervisor(s) must mail the forms directly to the Board office.
- If you do not have 30 post-Master credit hours, you must arrange for the Board office to receive one or more Counseling Experience Verification forms to verify the experience that you gained when you were not under the direct supervision of a clinical supervisor.
- For experience while you were employed, arrange for your clinical or administrative supervisor(s) to complete and mail one or more Counseling Experience Verification-Employment forms directly to the Board office.
- For experience while you were self-employed, arrange for a professional colleague, supervisor or other individual who has personal knowledge of your professional practice while self-employed to complete and mail one or more Counseling Experience Verification-Self-Employment forms directly to the Board office. The person who attests to your experience while self-employed cannot be your spouse, former spouse, parent, step-parent, grand-parent, child, step-child, sibling, aunt, uncle, cousin or in-law.
- All Counseling Experience Verification forms must clearly state the total number of post-Master’s mental health counseling hours
that you have provided. Providing only the dates of your employment or self-employment is not sufficient.
- When combined, the mandatory 1,600 hours verified on the Direct Supervision Reference forms added to the hours verified on all of the Counseling Experience Verification-Employment and Counseling Experience Verification-Self-Employment forms must total at least 3,200 hours. All of these hours must span a period of not less than two but no more than four years.
Additional Requirements for Applications by Reciprocity
When applying by reciprocity, all items listed in the Requirements for All Applicants section above are required. This includes current certification from the NBCC, ACMHC or other certifying mental health organization acceptable to the Board . Whether any additional documentation is required depends on whether you have been licensed in good standing for five years in any of the other jurisdictions where you hold a current license.
- If you have been licensed in good standing for five years in any other jurisdiction where you now hold a current license, no further documentation is needed.
- If you have been licensed less than five years in every jurisdiction where you are currently licensed, submit copies of the other jurisdictions’ licensing law, rules and regulations for the Board to review. The Board will determine if any of the other jurisdictions’ statute/rules and regulations are substantially similar to those of Delaware .
If you apply by reciprocity with less than five years of practice in any other jurisdiction and the Board later determines that none of the other jurisdictions’ requirements are substantially similar to those of Delaware, you will be asked to provide the additional documentation of your counseling education and experience as listed in the Requirements for Applications by Certification section above. The Board will then consider you for licensure by certification. If you do not meet the requirements for licensure by certification either, you may apply for the Associate Counselor of Mental Health license.