Ethics refers to the various moral principles that play a role in influencing a person’s behavior. Ethics in counseling form an important base that helps to define the counselor’s responsibility when they are relating with their client. The counselors therefore need to have a deep understanding of the various ethical standards in order to be able to help the public to make an informed decision and choices with regard to the issues revolving around the human behavior. Moreover the counselors have a professional responsibility to ensure that they always behave in an open and transparent manner whenever they are interacting with their clients. This paper outlines some of the ethical issues and how they contribute to the ethical practice in counseling.  In relation to this paper outlines ethical issues such as autonomy and how they impact both the counselor and client.

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Finally, the paper highlights the various measures the counselors need to consider in order to ensure that they deal with the ethical issues associated with counseling.


According to the code of ethics in counseling the communication between the clients is supposed to remain confidential. In relation to the counselor are required to ensure that they inform their client their confidentiality right. Through informing the client their right to confidentiality the counselor is able to provide their client with an opportunity to open up and raise any issue that they may be having in their life. The client confidentiality should only be disclosed with their informed consent, which should be given in a contract form where possible (Conte 101). The counselor should therefore desist from revealing the confidential information to their team members when reporting the status of their client to the other team members.

However the counselors in some cases may be forced to break the principle of confidentiality, for instance when the counselor realizes that the client wants to self-harm or harm others.  However in normal circumstance the counselors are expected to maintain confidentiality since a breach in the confidentiality can be devastating to a client affecting his or her emotional and psychological well-being.


Autonomy is also another basic principle in counseling. According to the principles of autonomy each individual is entitled to his or her own decision and act on them. The counselors are therefore required to ensure that they do not completely take away the client ability to make their own decision.  In addition the counselor is required to ensure that they balance the respect for an individual choice with other factors. In this case therefore the counselor is supposed to assess the whether the client has the capability to make a rational decision.

Bond (100) argues that the counseling should be a voluntary activity where the client is given a free will to take part in the process.  However the counselor is required to maintain a clear boundary in order to avoid any form of exploitation.  In order to maintain autonomy with the client the counselor is supposed to provide the client with adequate information regarding the procedure involved in the counseling. The counselor is also responsible for the method that needs to be used. On the other hand the client hold the responsibility of the way he or she uses the counseling services provided.  According to Conte (22) the counselors are required set atmospheres where they can encourage their client grow and develop.


The counselors are also supposed to adhere with the principle of beneficence. According to the   principle of beneficence the counselor must accept responsibility of promoting what is good for the client.

Sing (200) argues that the counselor is supposed to provide service based on the adequate training or experience that one has. Ensuring that the client interests are maintained requires the counselor to carry out a systematic review of all the available option in order to determine the best strategy to help the client. The counselors are also supposed to ensure that they take measure to undertake research and further training in order to ensure that they are equipped with adequate knowledge and skills required in the practice. Furthermore the counselor is required to make adequate follow up of the client in order to monitor the progress of the client. Through making adequate follow up the counselor can be able to establish whether the client follow the advice given. Counseling sometime can have a negative impact on the client, however the counselor is only supposed to ensure that he or she act within his or her control in order to help the client.



Bond, Tim. Standards and Ethics for Counselling in Action. Los Angeles: SAGE, 2010. Print.

Singh, Kavita. Counselling Skills for Managers. New Delhi: PHI Learning, 2009. Print.

Conte, Christian. Advanced Techniques for Counseling and Psychotherapy. New York: Springer Pub. Co, 2009. Print.