Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) Licensing Requirements

Each year millions of Americans receive vital mental health and substance abuse care and counseling from licensed professional counselors (LPCs) (also referred to as “licensed mental health counselors” or “licensed clinical professional counselors”).

In most state LPCs are required to obtain a minimum of a master’s degree in counseling or psychology. A master’s degree prepares LPCs to treat a myriad of mental, behavioral, and emotional problems and disorders afflicting individuals, families and communities. A growing number of LPCs dedicate their careers to researching more effective therapeutic treatment modalities. treatment modalities. LPCs make up a majority of the workforce employed in public mental health centers, organizations, and agencies. LPCs also provide counseling services to active duty military personnel, veterans, and their families.

LPC Licensing Requirements and Qualifications

Under licensure laws enacted in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia, there are over 120,000 licensed professional counselors in the United States. Education and training requirements for becoming a LPC are similar to those for other mental health providers includding marriage and family therapists and clinical social workers. The standard licensure requirements for licensed professional counselors in all 50 states typically include:

  • Obtaining a master’s or doctoral degree in counseling from a regionally or nationally accredited school. Accredited counseling programs should provide substantial clinical or hands-on experience and coursework in human behavior and development, ethical practice, professional counseling strategies and other relevant subject areas including the etiology of mental illness and substance abuse disorders, and the provision of industry accepted treatments of interpersonal, cognitive-behavioral, and psychodynamic therapy.

  • Completing at least 3,000 hours of post-master’s supervised clinical experience via an internship or residency program within two years of graduation. To maintain licensure periodic completion of continuing education credits/hours is also required.

  • Passing the National Counselor Examination (NCE) or a comparable state-recognized competency examination.

  • Acceptance and adherance to a strict Code of Ethics and recognized standards of practice as set forth by the counselor licensure board for the state of practice.
While the basic licensing requirements, rules and regulations for professional counseling are similar nationwide, there are some variations in individual licensing requirements from state to state. Before pursuing a career in counseling or selecting a program of study you should verify the professional counselor licensing requirements in your state. Below we've put together a comprehensive directory of the professional counselor licensure boards that regulate licensing in each state.

Alabama

Licensure designations in Alabama include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Associate Licensed Counselor (ALC).

Board of Examiners in Counseling
950 22nd Street North, Suite 765
Birmingham, AL 35203
800-822-3307
205-458-8716
Fax: 205-458-8718
www.abec.alabama.gov

Alaska

Licensure designations in Alaska include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

Board of Professional Counselors
P.O. Box 110806
Juneau, AK 99811-0806
907-465-2551
Fax: 907-465-2974
www.commerce.state.ak.us/occ/ppco.htm

Arizona

Licensure designations in Arizona include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Licensed Associate Counselor (LAC).

Board of Behavioral Health Examiners
3443 N. Central Avenue, Suite 1700
Phoenix, AZ 85012
602-542-1882
Fax: 602-364-0890
information@azbbhe.us
http://azbbhe.us

Arkansas

Licensure designations in Arkansas include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Licensed Associate Counselor (LAC).

Board of Examiners in Counseling
P.O. Box 70
Magnolia, AR 71754
870-901-7055
Fax: 870-234-1842
arboec@sbglobal.net
www.arkansas.gov/abec

California

Licensure designations in California include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

California Assocation for Licensed Professional Clinical Counselors (CALPCC)
2220 Capitol Avenue
Sacramento, CA 95816
www.bbs.ca.gov

Colorado

Licensure designations in Colorado include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC). The Provisional Licensed Professional Counselor designation was ended on June 30, 2011.

Board of Licensed Professional Counselor Examiners
1560 Broadway, Suite 1350
Denver, CO 80202
303-894-7766
Fax: 303-894-7764
MentalHealth@dora.state.co.us
www.dora.state.co.us/mental-health


Connecticut

Licensure designations in Connecticut include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

Department of Public Health
Professional Counselor Licensure
410 Capitol Avenue, MS #12APP
P.O. Box 340308
Hartford, CT 06134-0308
860-509-7603
Fax: 860/509-8457
oplc.dph@ct.gov
http://www.ct.gov/dph/

Delaware

Licensure designations in Delaware include Licensed Professional Counselor of Mental Health (LPCMH) and Licensed Associate Counselor of Mental Health (LACMH).

Board of Mental Health and Chemical Dependency Professionals
Cannon Building
861 Silver Lake Boulevard, Suite 203
Dover, DE 19904-2467
302-744-4500
Fax: 302/739-2711
http://dpr.delaware.gov/

District of Columbia

Licensure designations in District of Columbia include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

Board of Professional Counseling
717 14th Street, NW, Suite 600
Washington, DC 20005
877-672-2174
Fax: 202-727-8471
http://hpla.doh.dc.gov/hpla/site/default.asp

Florida

Licensure designations in Florida include Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC), Provisional Mental Health Counselor and Registered Mental Health Counselor Intern.

Board of Clinical Social Work, Marriage & Family Therapy, and Mental Health Counseling
4052 Bald Cypress Way, BIN C-08
Tallahassee, FL 32399
850-245-4474
Fax: 850-921-5389
mqa_491@doh.state.fl.us
www.doh.state.fl.us/mqa/491

Georgia

Licensure designations in Georgia include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Associate Licensed Professional Counselor (LAPC).

Composite Board of Professional Counselors, Social Workers, and Marriage & Family Therapists
237 Coliseum Drive
Macon, GA 31217
478-207-2440
Fax: 866-888-7127
http://sos.georgia.gov/plb/counselors/

Hawaii

Licensure designations in Hawaii include Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC).

Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs – PVL
Mental Health Counselor Program
P.O. Box 3469
Honolulu, HI 96801
(808) 586-2693
counselor@dcca.hawaii.gov
www.hawaii.gov/dcca/areas/pvl/programs/mental/

Idaho

Licensure designations in Idaho include Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC), Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Registered Counselor Intern.

State Licensing Board of Professional Counselors and Marriage & Family Therapists
700 W. State Street, First Floor
PO Box 83720
Boise, ID 83720
208-334-3233
Fax: 208-334-3945
cou@ibol.idaho.gov
http://www.ibol.idaho.gov/

Illinois

Licensure designations in Illinois include Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC) and Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

Professional Counselor Licensing and Disciplinary Board
320 W. Washington Street, 3rd Floor
Springfield, IL 62786
217-785-0800
217-524-6735 (TDD)
Fax: 217/782-7645
www.idfpr.com/dpr/who/prfcns.asp

Indiana

Licensure designations in Indiana include Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC).

Behavioral Health & Human Services Licensing Board
402 W. Washington Street, Room W072
Indianapolis, IN 46204
317-234-2064
Fax: 317-233-4236
pla5@pla.in.gov
www.in.gov/pla/social.htm

Iowa

Licensure designations in Iowa include Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC).

Board of Behavioral Science
Lucas State Office Building, 5th Floor
321 E. 12th Street
Des Moines, IA 50319
515-281-4422
Fax: 515-281-3121
www.idph.state.ia.us/licensure/

Kansas

Licensure designations in Kansas include Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC) and Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

Behavioral Sciences Regulatory Board
712 S. Kansas Avenue
Topeka, KS 66603
785-296-3240
Fax: 785-296-3112
http://www.ksbsrb.org/

Kentucky

Licensure designations in Kentucky include Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC) and Licensed Professional Counselor Associate (LPCA).

Board of Licensed Professional Counselors
P.O. Box 1360
Frankfort, KY 40602
502-564-3296, x239
Fax: 502-564-4818
http://lpc.ky.gov

Louisiana

Licensure designations in Louisiana include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Counselor Intern.

Licensed Professional Counselors Board of Examiners
8631 Summa Avenue
Baton Rouge, LA 70809
225-765-2515
Fax: 225-765-2514
lpcboard@eatel.net
www.lpcboard.org

Maine

Licensure designations in Maine include Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC), Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), Conditional LCPC and Conditional LPC.

Board of Counseling Professionals Licensure
35 State House Station
Augusta, ME 04333
207-624-8674
888-577-6690 TTY
Fax: 207-624-8637
http://www.maine.gov/pfr/professionallicensing

Maryland

Licensure designations in Maryland include Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC) and Licensed Graduate Professional Counselor.

Board of Examiners of Professional Counselors and Therapists
4201 Patterson Avenue, 3rd Floor
Baltimore, MD 21215
410-764-4732
Fax: 410-358-1610
http://dhmh.maryland.gov/bopc

Massachusetts

Licensure designations in Massachusetts include Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC).

Board of Registration of Allied Mental Health & Human Services Professionals
Division of Professional Licensure
1000 Washington Street, Suite 710
Boston, MA 02118
617-727-3080
Fax: 617-727-2197
www.mass.gov/dpl/boards/mh

Michigan

Licensure designations in Michigan include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) Limited Licensed Professional Counselor (LLPC).

Board of Counseling
P.O. Box 30670
Lansing, MI 48909
517-335-0918
Fax: 517-373-2179
bhphelp@michigan.gov
www.michigan.gov/healthlicense

Minnesota

Licensure designations in Minnesota include Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC) and Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

Board of Behavioral Health & Therapy
2829 University Avenue SE, Suite 210
Minneapolis, MN 55414
612-617-2178
800-627-3529 TTY
Fax: 612-617-2187
bbht.board@state.mn.us
www.bbht.state.mn.us

Mississippi

Licensure designations in Mississippi include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

State Board of Examiners for Licensed Professional Counselors
P.O. Box 1497
129 E. Jefferson Street
Yazoo City, MS 39194
662-716-3932
888-860-7001
Fax: 662/716-3021
www.lpc.state.ms.us

Missouri

Licensure designations in Missouri include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Provisional Licensed Professional Counselor (PLPC).

Committee for Professional Counselors
3605 Missouri Boulevard
P.O. Box 1335
Jefferson City, MO 65102
573-751-0018
800-735-2966 TTY
Fax: 573/751-0735
profcounselor@pr.mo.gov
http://pr.mo.gov/counselors.asp

Montana

Licensure designations in Montana include Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC).

Board of Social Work Examiners and Professional Counselors
301 S. Park, 4th Floor
P.O. Box 200513
Helena, MT 59620
406-841-2391 or 2392
Fax: 406-841-2305
dlibsdswp@mt.gov
http://bsd.dli.mt.gov/license/bsd_boards/swp_board/board_page.asp

Nebraska

Licensure designations in Nebraska include Licensed Independent Mental Health Practitioner-Certified Professional Counselor or Licensed Professional Counselor (LIMHP-CPC/LPC), Licensed Mental Health Practitioner-Certified Professional Counselor or Licensed Professional Counselor (LMHP-CPC/LPC), Licensed Mental Health Practitioner (LMHP) and Provisional Licensed Mental Health Practitioner (PLMHP).

Board of Mental Health Practice
P.O. Box 94986
Lincoln, NE 68509
402-471-2117
Fax: 402-471-3577
www.dhhs.ne.gov/crl/mhcs/mental/mentalindex.htm

Nevada

Licensure designations in Nevada include Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC) and Licensed Clinical Counselor Intern.

Board of Examiners for Marriage & Family Therapists & Clinical Professional Counselors
P.O. Box 370130
Las Vegas, NV 89137-0130
702-486-7388
Fax: 702-486-7258
nvmftbd@mftbd.nv.gov
http://marriage.state.nv.us/

New Hampshire

Licensure designations in New Hampshire include Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor (LCMHC).

Board of Mental Health Practice
117 Pleasant Street
Concord, NH 03301
603-271-6762
800-735-2954 TDD
Fax: 603/271-3950
www.nh.gov/mhpb

New Jersey

Licensure designations in New Jersey include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Licensed Associate Counselor (LAC).

Board of Marriage and Family Therapy Examiners
Professional Counselor Examiners Committee
P.O. Box 45007
Newark, NJ 07101
973-504-6582
Fax: 973-648-3536
www.njconsumeraffairs.gov/proc

New Mexico

Licensure designations in New Mexico include Licensed Professional Clinical Mental Health Counselor (LPCC), Licensed Professional Mental Health Counselor (LPC) and Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC). (Note: Licenses are no longer being issued for the LPC designation.

Counseling and Therapy Practice Board
2550 Cerrillos Road
Santa Fe, NM 87505
505-476-4610
Fax: 505-476-4633
counselingboard@state.nm.us
www.rld.state.nm.us/counseling

New York

Licensure designations in New York include Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC).

State Board for Mental Health Practitioners
89 Washington Avenue
Albany, NY 12234-1000
518-474-3817, x450
Fax: 518-486-2981
mhpbd@mail.nysed.gov
http://www.op.nysed.gov/prof/mhp/mhclic.htm

North Carolina

Licensure designations in North Carolina include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), Licensed Professional Counselor Supervisor (LPCS) and Licensed Professional Counselor Associate (LPCA).

Board of Licensed Professional Counselors
P.O. Box 1369
Garner, NC 27529
919-661-0820
Fax: 919-779-5642
ncblpc@mgmt4u.com
www.ncblpc.org

North Dakota

Licensure designations in New York include Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC), Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Licensed Associate Professional Counselor (LAPC).

Board of Counselor Examiners
2112 10th Ave SE
Mandan, ND 58554
701-667-5969
ndbce@btinet.net
www.ndbce.org

Ohio

Licensure designations in Ohio include Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC), Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Professional Counselor/Clinical Resident.

Counselor, Social Worker, and Marriage & Family Therapist Board
50 West Broad Street, Suite 1075
Columbus, OH 43215
614-466-0912
Fax: 614-728-7790
cswmft.info@cswb.state.oh.us
http://cswmft.ohio.gov

Oklahoma

Licensure designations in Oklahoma include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

State Board of Licensed Professional Counselors
1000 N.E. 10th Street
Oklahoma City, OK 73117
405-271-6030
Fax: 405-271-1918
nenaw@health.ok.gov
http://pcl.health.ok.gov

Oregon

Licensure designations in Oregon include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Registered Intern.

Board of Licensed Professional Counselors and Therapists
3218 Pringle Road, SE, Suite 250
Salem, OR 97302-6312
503-378-5499
Fax: 503-373-1427
lpct.board@state.or.us
www.oregon.gov/oblpct

Pennsylvania

Licensure designations in Pennsylvania include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

State Board of Social Workers, Marriage & Family Therapists, and Professional Counselors
P.O. Box 2649
Harrisburg, PA 17105-2649
717-783-1389
Fax: 717-787-7769
st-socialwork@state.pa.us
www.dos.state.pa.us/social

Puerto Rico

Licensure designations in Puerto Rico include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Professional Counselor with Provisional License (PCPL).

Board of Examiners of Professional Counselors
P.O. Box 10200
San Juan, PR 00908
787-765-2929
www.salud.gov.pr

Rhode Island

Licensure designations in Rhode Island include Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor (LCMHC).

Board of Mental Health Counselors and Marriage & Family Therapists
3 Capitol Hill, Room 104
Providence, RI 02908
401-222-2828
Fax: 401-222-1272
www.health.ri.gov/hsr/professions/mf_counsel.php

South Carolina

Licensure designations in South Carolina include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Professional Counselor Intern (LPC/I). To apply for licensure you'll need to contact the Center for Credentialing and Education (CCE).

Board of Examiners for Licensure of Professional Counselors, Marriage & Family Therapists, and Psycho-Educational Specialists
P.O. Box 11329
Columbia, SC 29211-1329
803-896-4665
Fax: 803-896-4719
www.llr.state.sc.us/pol/counselors

South Dakota

Licensure designations in South Dakota include Licensed Professional Counselor – Mental Health (LPC-MH) and Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

Board of Examiners for Counselors and Marriage & Family Therapists
P.O. Box 2164
Sioux Falls, SD 57101
605-331-2927
Fax: 605-331-2043
sdbce.msp@midconetwork.com
http://dhs.sd.gov/brd/counselor

Tennessee

Licensure designations in Tennessee include Licensed Professional Counselor-Mental Health Service Provider (LPC/MHSP) and Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

Board for Professional Counselors, Marital & Family Therapists, and Clinical Pastoral Therapists
227 French Landing, Suite 300
Nashville, TN 37243
615-532-3202, x 25138
800-778-4123, x 25138
Fax: 615/532-5369
http://health.state.tn.us/boards/PC_MFT&CPT/

Texas

Licensure designations in Texas include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Licensed Professional Counselor Intern (LPC-I).

State Board of Examiners of Professional Counselors
P.O. Box 149347, MC 1982
Austin, TX 78714
512-834-6658
Fax: 512-834-6677
lpc@dshs.state.tx.us
www.dshs.state.tx.us/counselor

Utah

Licensure designations in Utah include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), Associate Professional Counselor and Associate Professional Counselor Extern.

Professional Counselor Licensing Board
P.O. Box 146741
Salt Lake City, UT 84114-6741
801-530-6628
866-275-3675 (Utah toll-free number)
Fax: 801-530-6511
http://dopl.utah.gov/licensing/professional_counseling.html

Vermont

Licensure designations in Vermont include Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor (LCMHC).

Board of Allied Mental Health Practitioners
National Life Building, North Floor 2
Montpelier, VT 05620-3402
1-800-439-8683 (in-state)
802-828-2390
Fax: 802-828-2465
http://vtprofessionals.org

Virginia

Licensure designations in Virginia include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

Board of Counseling
Perimeter Center
9960 Mayland Drive, Suite 300
Richmond, VA 23233
804-367-4610
Fax: 804-527-4435
coun@dhp.virginia.gov
www.dhp.virginia.gov/counseling

Washington

Licensure designations in Washington include Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC), Licensed Mental Health Counselor Associate (LMHCA), Certified Counselor (CC), Certified Adviser (CA) and Agency Affiliated Counselor (AAC).

Licensed Mental Health Counselors, Marriage and Family Therapists and Social Workers Advisory Committee
P.O. Box 47877
Olympia, WA 98504-7877
360-236-4700
Fax: 360-236-4818
hpqa.csc@doh.wa.gov
http://www.doh.wa.gov/licensing/

West Virginia

Licensure designations in West Virgnia include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

Board of Examiners in Counseling
815 Quarrier Street, Suite 212
Charleston, WV 25301
304-558-5494
800-520-3852
Fax: 304-558-5496
counselingboard@msn.com
www.wvbec.org

Wisconsin

Licensure designations in Wisconsin include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Professional Counselor Trainee.

Examining Board of Marriage & Family Therapists, Professional Counselors and Social Workers
P.O. Box 8935
Madison, WI 53708
608-266-2112
Fax: 608-261-7083
http://drl.wi.gov/board_detail.asp?boardid=32&locid=0

Wyoming

Licensure designations in Wisconsin include Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Provisional Professional Counselor (PPC).

Mental Health Professions Licensing Board
1800 Carey Avenue, 4th Floor
Cheyenne, WY 82002
307-777-3628
Fax: 307-777-3508
WyoMHPLB@wyo.gov
http://plboards.state.wy.us/mentalhealth/index.asp