Licensure by Endorsement

The North Carolina Board of Licensed Professional Counselors is pleased to offer current licensees from other states the option to apply for licensure in North Carolina through an endorsement process, if they meet the following requirements, under rule 21 NCAC 53 .0304:

  • have a minimum of 5 years of full time counseling experience, or 8 years of part time counseling experience, or a combination of full time and part time counseling experience equivalent to 5 years of full time counseling experience, within 10 years directly prior to application;
  • have a minimum of 2500 hours of direct client contact;
  • have an active independent license that does not require supervision, and be in good standing as a licensed professional counselor in another state for a minimum of 2 years directly prior to application;

  • and
  • comply with all other applicable rules for licensure as a licensed professional counselor.

Endorsement Guidelines

If a candidate is licensed to practice counseling by a Board in another state, the applicant must apply for licensure with the North Carolina Board. The Board shall consider the application for “licensed professional counselor” in accordance with the provisions of NC G.S.§§ 90-336 and 90-337.

Application

Applicants must complete all requirements before license can be issued. (G.S. § 90-336)

  • General Information
  • Credentials
  • Legal & Ethics History
  • Education
  • References
  • Professional Counseling Experience
  • Application Fee ($238, which includes the $38 criminal background check fee)
  • Other Required Application Documents
    • Application Validation - Notary
    • Criminal Background Check
    • LPC Jurisprudence Exam
    • LPC Professional Disclosure Statement
    • Verification of Professional Counseling Experience
    • Out-of-State Licensure Verification

Education: (G.S. §§ 90-336, 90-337, and 90-338)

(1) Has earned a master's degree in counseling or related field from an institution of higher education that is either regionally accredited or accredited by an organization both recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) and accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) and the applicant meets one of the following criteria:

  1. A minimum of 48 semester hours or 72 quarter credit hours of graduate training as defined by the Board, if the applicant enrolled in the master’s program before July 1, 2009;
  2. A minimum of 54 semester hours or 81 quarter credit hours of graduate training as defined by the Board, if the applicant enrolled in the master’s program before July 1, 2013, but after June 30, 2009;
  3. A minimum of 60 semester hours or 90 quarter credit hours of graduate training as defined by the Board, if the applicant enrolled in the master’s program after June 30, 2013.

(2) An applicant who holds a master’s degree from a college or university accredited by one of the regional accrediting associations or from a college or university determined by the Board to have standards substantially equivalent to a regionally accredited institution, provided the applicant was enrolled in the master’s program prior to July 1, 1994.

Examination: (G.S. § 90-336; Rules .0305 and .0307)

Applicants must complete and pass the following examinations in accordance with rules adopted by the Board:

1. National Exam

  • a) One of the following national exams shall be taken to complete the examination requirement for licensure as a licensed professional counselor associate and licensed professional counselor:
    • (i) the National Counselor Examination (NCE) – provided by the National Board for Certified Counselors;
    • (ii) the National Clinical Mental Health Counselor Examination (NCMHCE) – provided by the National Board for Certified Counselors; or
    • (iii) the Certified Rehabilitation Counselor Examination (CRC) – provided by the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification
  • b) The Board shall accept examinations administered by other state counselor licensing boards and professional counselor credentialing associations if the Board determines that such examinations are equivalent to the NCE, NCMHCE, or CRC relative to content and minimum satisfactory performance levels for counselors.
  • c) Additional Exam Information Documents
  • NCE and NCMHCE Exam Registration Form
  • NCE and NCMHCE Score Request Form
  • CRC Score Request Form

2. Jurisprudence Exam

  • a) The jurisprudence exam is required for licensure application at each level and must be taken within six months prior to application to the Board.
  • Jurisprudence Exam Instructions

Experience (Rule .0304)

LPC by Endorsement applicants must have Has one of the following:

  1. At least 5 years of full-time licensed professional counseling experience, including a minimum of 2,500 hours of direct client contact within 10 years directly prior to application;
  2. At least 8 years of part-time licensed professional counseling experience, including a minimum of 2,500 hours of direct client contact within 10 years directly prior to application; or
  3. A combination of full-time and part-time professional counseling experience equivalent to 5 years of full time counseling experience, including a minimum of 2,500 hours of direct client contact within 10 years directly prior to application as determined by the Board.

Direct Counseling Experience (Rule .0205)

  1. Consists of live contact with individuals, groups, and families through counseling as defined in G.S. 90-330(a)(3) a thru b: o a. Counseling. – Assisting individuals, groups, and families through the counseling relationship by evaluating and treating mental disorders and other conditions through the use of a combination of clinical mental health and human development principles, methods, diagnostic procedures, treatment plans, and other psychotherapeutic techniques, to develop an understanding of personal problems, to define goals, and to plan action reflecting the client’s interests, abilities, aptitudes, and mental health needs as these are related to personal-social-emotional concerns, educational progress, and occupations and careers.
  2. Appraisal Activities. – Administering and interpreting tests for assessment of personal characteristics.

Professional Counseling Experience

Verification of Professional Counseling Experience

Endorsement Applicants must document on forms provided by the Board:

  • Verification of Professional Counseling Experience
  • General information of person verifying
    • Must be verified by a licensed mental health professional (Rule .0213)
      • Licensed Professional Counselors (LPC);
      • Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists (LMFT);
      • Licensed Clinical Social Workers (LCSW) with a master's degree in social work from a school of social work accredited by the Council of Social Work Education;
      • Licensed Psychologists;
      • Licensed Medical Doctors with a Medical Board certification in psychiatry;
      • Nurse Practitioners approved to practice in North Carolina and certified by the American Nurses Credentialing Center as an advanced practice nurse practitioner and certified in psychiatric nursing; and
      • Clinical Nurse Specialists certified by the American Nurses Credentialing Center or the American Psychiatric Nurse Association as an Advanced Practice Psychiatric Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS).
  • Location of experience
  • Verification that licensed experience occurred
  • Dates and hours
    • Must separate full-time and part-time
    • Document direct client contact hours

Licensure Verification

Endorsement applicants must have an active, unrestricted license in good standing as a licensed professional counselor in another state for a minimum of two years directly prior to application.

If disciplinary action has occurred prior to application, each case will be reviewed on a case by case basis.

Out-of-State License Verification Form, which is to be completed by the current state licensure board.