When you go see a dentist, or a doctor, you assume that they have the necessary training and education to treat you. Instead of you doing research on your dentist, you can rely on industry standards when walking into a dentist’s office that their title as a Dr. is real. You have the confidence to know that your dentist can help you. 

However, in BC, as with most parts of Canada, the title Counsellor or Therapist is unprotected. As a result, therapists and mental health providers can have various titles. Titles like RTC, RP, RMFT, RCC, CCC, MMFT, and more do not hold much information for the general public. With so many titles, clients may pick someone who is unqualified to help, even if those titles have words like “registered” or “professional,” thus creating more harm than good. What’s more is that without an ethics board, complaints from unqualified therapists become nothing more than a file that collects dust.

What Does Unprotected Mean?

That means legally, a 5-year-old is allowed to call themselves a registered clinical professional therapist. Yes, our industry has many unqualified therapists who have created a seemingly legit website to start charging high rates and unfortunately, that can create re-traumatization and harm to clients.

In Kelowna, where our office is located, we have a college for professional counselling where they hand out diplomas for a 1-year counselling program. However, in regulated provinces in Canada, The United States and countries across the globe, the standard to providing mental health care as a counsellor or therapist is a Master’s Level graduate program or higher. 


How Do I Know if My Therapist is Legit?

First thing to note is that the laws vary by province. In BC, look for RCC, CCC or MSW titles. Anyone with these titles require a Master’s Level degree from a recognized university. Luckily, these titles are often recognized with extended benefits. However, don’t stop there. Ensure that your therapist is currently up to date with their credentials and that what you’re looking for fits the expertise of your therapist. Many therapists go on to acquire additional trainings and specialties, so ensuring you find your fit is extremely important. A CBT therapist is vastly different from an EMDR-trained trauma therapist. If you’re looking for a qualified therapist, rest assured that we (at Momentous) only work with Master’s Level counsellors so you are always in good hands. We offer 10-minute free consults as our way to introduce ourselves to ensure your money is well spent – no strings attached. 


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