Respect: Confidentiality

Article 71         Confidentiality

Psychologists enter into a relationship of trust in their direct contacts with the person(s) involved. Psychologists are therefore obligated to keep secret any information that comes to their attention in practising their profession, insofar as the Data are of a confidential nature. This obligation also applies to a psychologist’s professional opinion of the Person Involved. The duty of confidentiality continues to apply after the end of the Professional Relationship.


Article 72         Due care in communications

Psychologists must take all reasonable precautions to avoid any confidential Data on the Client being disclosed to Third Parties without the Client’s consent in written, telephone or electronic communications with the Client or with other Persons Involved. Psychologists must discuss at an early stage with the Client or with any Third Parties involved how the communications can best take place and how they should be organised in order to protect Client confidentiality.


Article 73         Confidentiality in Reports and the Provision of Data

If certain Data are provided or reported to Third Parties with the Client’s consent, no duty of confidentiality applies in relation to the recipient of those Data or of the opinion set out in the statement or Report. Psychologists are under a duty of confidentiality with regard to all other information that may come to their attention.


Article 74         Overriding of confidentiality

Psychologists are not obligated to observe confidentiality if they have valid reason to believe that overriding the confidentiality is the only and the last resource to prevent a direct threat to persons or if they are obligated to do so by statutory provisions or a court order.


Article 75         Information on overriding of confidentiality

If it is to be expected that such a situation might arise, the psychologist must notify the Person Involved that the psychologist may in that case be obligated to override the confidentiality, unless such notification might present an immediate threat to the psychologist or Third Parties.


Article 76         Scope of the overriding of confidentiality

If the psychologist decides to override the confidentiality, the overriding may not go beyond what is necessary in the circumstances of the case and the psychologist must notify the Person Involved of his or her decision, unless such notification might present an immediate threat to the psychologist or Third Parties.


Article 77         Claiming the right to refuse to give evidence

Psychologists are obligated to claim the right to refuse to give evidence in court if giving evidence or answering questions would constitute breach of their duty of confidentiality.


Article 78         Confidentiality towards persons other than the Client

If Data must be included in the File that relate to persons other than the Client and those Data have not been provided by the Client himself/herself, those Data must be recorded in such a form that they can be temporarily deleted so that, if the Client is given access to the File, the confidentiality of those Data can be guaranteed.


Article 79         Confidentiality towards persons in a Client System

Insofar as Data necessarily relate to several persons at once, the psychologist must record those Data in a File on the Client System in question. Before recording Data in such a File, the psychologist must inform each of the Persons Involved accordingly and must draw their attention to the fact that this may restrict their right to be given access to and to receive a copy of the File, insofar as that is necessary to guarantee the confidentiality of each person’s Data.


Article 80         File security

Psychologists must ensure that the File is kept in such a way that no one has access to it without their permission, so that the Data remain confidential.