On this page you will find answers to UKCP members’ frequently asked questions (FAQ) about their membership. The questions are arranged into the following categories:
- Continuing Professional Development (CPD)
- Ethical and legal
- Learning from complaints
If you have a question which you’d like to see added to this page, or if you would like to ask a question to one of our team, please contact us.
With the easing of lockdown restrictions, the government has said people can return to work. Can I now see clients face to face?
While the government’s new rules set out changes to the coronavirus restrictions, the UK remains in lockdown and we are being told to work from home wherever possible and maintain physical distancing.
Our advice continues to be that wherever possible clients and therapists do not risk theirs’ and others’ health by delivering/receiving therapy face-to-face where other options are available. Therapists must apply their professional judgement and refer to their insurers and, where applicable, their employers.
I am unable to provide therapy in person to a client. Where can I find information about conducting online sessions and remote working?
We have created a webpage, Information about coronavirus Covid-19, which has our latest guidance and recommendations.
We have produced:
- Guidelines for working with adult clients in isolation [updated 26 March 2020]
- Guidelines for working with children and young people
- An online course for UKCP members on working in the context of Covid-19
- Guidelines for family, couples and group therapists
Should I continue working with vulnerable clients for whom remote working is not appropriate?
Continuing support is very important for vulnerable clients. Following the government’s announcement to stay at home unless absolutely necessary, we strongly advise that wherever possible clients and therapists do not risk theirs’ and others’ health by delivering/receiving therapy face-to-face where other options are available. Therapists must apply their professional judgement and refer to their insurers and, where applicable, their employers. You should also speak to your supervisor if you are unsure about working with them remotely.
I am concerned about confidentiality and data protection when working online or remotely.
The Information Commissioners Office recently issued helpful advice on data protection and coronavirus, recognising that these are unprecedented challenging times and that people will need to adapt the way they work.
What hygiene precautions should I take when meeting clients face-to-face?
For up-to-date information on keeping safe for individuals and organisations operating in a number of environments, please refer to the government website.
Where can I find guidance on working with children and young people?
With the support of member experts, we have developed emergency guidelines for working remotely with existing child and young person clients. Please note that the UKCP Child Standards of Education and Training and the Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct must be adhered to irrespective of whether clients are seen in person, online or otherwise.
How can members find psychotherapeutic professionals who can advise on working remotely?
We advise you to speak directly with your organisational member, supervisor, and/or modality college.
Can I take a break from my UKCP membership?
We offer full clinical members the option to take a sabbatical for up to one year. During this time, your name will not appear on our National Register, and your records will be kept dormant until you reactivate your membership..
For more information about taking a sabbatical, please visit the section on Membership.
With events being cancelled, how can I accrue CPD hours?
We are mindful that members may be undertaking the majority of their CPD online at this time, which may be new. We are also recommending that organisational members and colleges consider creative, flexible and pragmatic approaches to CPD during this time. Reading, research, online workshops, webinars and peer groups all count towards CPD.
Can psychotherapists and training students conduct online therapy sessions?
Some members may already carry out therapy which is not face to face and therefore there will be little impact on their therapeutic relationship with clients and training students. However, for some remote online working will be new territory.
In light of the government announcements to stay at home unless absolutely necessary, we strongly advise that wherever possible clients, training students and therapists do not risk theirs’ and others’ health by delivering/receiving therapy face-to-face where other options are available. Therapists must apply their professional judgement and refer to their insurers and, where applicable, their employers.
We have created a webpage, Information about coronavirus Covid-19, with information and guidance for therapists on working in the current situation. On it you will find our latest recommendations, guidance and information.
You should also bear in mind is that this is an emergency situation, and so as long as you have made a reasoned decision for any changes to your practice, and have explained the reasons for these to your clients, supervisor and indemnity providers, then working remotely should be fine.
What are the membership joining fees?
Please see our membership joining fees web page.
What benefits will I receive as a UKCP member?
A list of benefits available for each membership grade is available on the Benefits of membership page of this website.
What do I need to do before applying for UKCP membership?
For information on becoming a UKCP member, please see our webpage on How to join.
What does each grade of membership mean?
UKCP has categories of membership to support individuals whatever stage of their career they are at. We also welcome organisations into membership. For more information, please visit the section of our website on categories of membership.
How can I apply?
We welcome new members. Each membership grade has an application form which you can find on the web page for that category. Simply complete the relevant form and send it to us.
I am applying online and the cost of membership is a different price at the checkout.
Our membership year runs from 1 October to 30 September. If you join part of the way through the year, you will be charged a proportion of the annual fee.
For example, if you join in October you will pay the full 12-month fee but if you join in March, you will pay a 7-month fee.
For people joining in July, August and September, your first fee covers more than a year so that you don’t have go through the renewal process again soon after joining. People joining in July will be charged a 15-month fee, August joiners will pay a 14-month fee and those who join in September will pay a 13-month fee.
How do I pay for my membership?
Almost all UKCP members pay by Direct Debit. Full clinical and full non-clinical members also have the option to pay in four instalments or to pay in a single payment by debit or credit card.
Where can I find a receipt for my UKCP membership payments?
Receipts are available through the Members’ login area of our website. Look for the ‘My transactions’ menu on the left-hand side of the page. Receipts are generated up to four working days after a payment is collected.
When and how do I renew my membership?
Our membership year starts on 1 October. You will receive your renewal notice towards the end of August each year. This will tell you how to renew. If you have a Direct Debit in place, the payment will be collected on the first working day in October.
Where can I find proof of my membership?
To check your membership grade, log in to the members’ area of the website. Your membership type is listed at the bottom of your ‘My profile’ page.
If you are a full clinical psychotherapist or psychotherapeutic counsellor, you will receive an annual membership and registration certificate, and you will be listed in our National Register.
Trainee members will appear on our List of Trainee Therapists.
How can I change my membership to another membership grade?
Each membership grade has an application form which you can find on the web page for that category. Simply complete the form for the membership grade you’d like to apply for and send it to us.
How do I log into my Member Area?
Click on Member’s Login at the top right of any page on our website. If you already have an online account, please sign in with your username (the email address we hold for you) and password.
If you have forgotten your password, you can reset it using the ‘Forgot Password’ link.
If you have forgotten your username, please contact the Membership Team on 0207 014 9955 (Option 1) or email@example.com.
If you have applied for membership by post, you will receive a link by email prompting you to login to the Member Area and set your password once your application has been processed and activated.
What standards do I need to meet to maintain my membership?
As a member of UKCP, you are expected to follow the UKCP Code of Ethics and Professional Practice. You will also be expected to meet standards relating to things such as client hours and supervision arrangements – these are set by your organisational member. If you no longer belong to an organisational member, please check your UKCP college standards.
UKCP has standards of practice and guidelines. We encourage our colleges and organisations to build on these with additional requirements for each type of psychotherapy. We would therefore recommend that you speak to them directly.
To maintain the integrity of our register and high standards of regulation, registered individual members undergo reaccreditation with their organisational member or UKCP college and we undertake annual random audits.
We offer full clinical members the option to take a sabbatical for up to one year. During this time, your name will not appear on our National Register, and your records will be kept dormant until you reactivate your membership.
You will need to keep a record of your sabbatical period and return date.
If your sabbatical is for twelve months or less, you can resume your membership by contacting our Membership Team. If you take a break for more than a year, you will need to reapply for membership through your organisational member or UKCP college.
When you re-join us, we will calculate your membership fee starting from the day your membership is reinstated.
How do I receive updates from UKCP?
We send regular email news bulletins. To make sure you are receiving emails and updates from UKCP, log into your Member Area and select the tab ‘My Mailing Preferences’ from the ‘My Profile’ menu at the top of the page. Here you will be able to see and update your contact preferences.
Do I need to maintain my membership of my UKCP organisational member?
We encourage members to remain with their organisational member because of the peer support and guidance they can offer, especially in relation to ethical questions. However, there is no requirement for full clinical members to stay with their organisation after their first year of UKCP membership. For more information, please email the Membership Team.
Do I need to do CPD?
Continuing professional development, or CPD, protects the public by ensuring standards of practice are maintained and improved.
An appropriate range of CPD activities would typically include an element of clinical supervision, research, attendance at events such as conferences/workshops/webinars; private study; awareness of developments in contemporary thinking and best practice; and evidence of reflective/reflexive practice.
UKCP members may be required to follow a number of CPD policies. We have an overarching policy on CPD, which applies to all members. In addition, each UKCP college has their own CPD Policy which sets out their modality-specific requirements, and some UKCP organisational members may have their own additional CPD policies.
How many hours of CPD do I need to do this year?
A minimum of 20 hours per year, and a minimum of 250 hours over a five-yearly period. This will be looked at as part of your five-yearly reaccreditation, your organisational member’s annual CPD check, or the UKCP random audit.
Does the course/workshop I recently took count towards CPD?
Your organisational member (or UKCP college if you are no longer a member of an organisation) undertakes your reaccreditation onto our register so you need to make sure that your course or workshop meets their requirements. Please contact your organisation or college to check.
If I take time out, how does this affect my CPD?
If you are taking time out from the UKCP register, please contact your organisational member or UKCP college. They will advise you on the requirements while taking time out, and how this time out will affect your CPD and reaccreditation. They can also advise you on how to return to the register.
How many hours of supervision do I need as a professional member?
The amount of supervision you need is dependent on a number of factors:
- your organisational member or UKCP college’s requirements
- how long you’ve been practising
- how many clients you see
- the type of client group(s) you work with.
Your organisational member or UKCP college will be able to advise you on the specifics. This information can also be found within their CPD and supervision policy documents.
How many hours of supervision do I need as a trainee?
This can be found in your student handbook. Your course director and course tutor can also provide this information.
I have completed a training which places me on the UKCP register to work with adults. Can I also work with children or young people?
Psychotherapy with children, young people and their families is not the same as psychotherapy with adults. UKCP therapists with specific skills, training and experience to work with children and families are included on our specialist register.
Practitioners who work with families, children or young people should be in appropriate supervision with someone specialised in the same type of therapy and should undertake CPD with these client groups in mind.
Most members train to work with particular client groups. If you want to work with additional client groups, you will need to undertake additional specialist training.
Who do I contact if I have an ethical query?
Many ethical dilemmas that psychotherapists and psychotherapeutic counsellors face have legal, regulatory and practice-related implications.
We advise you to review the Code of Ethics and Professional Practice as a starting point and consider consulting as appropriate:
- your supervisor
- your professional indemnity insurer’s legal helpline
- your employer’s human resources team
- your line manager
- your organisational member (OM)
- your UKCP college.
For queries relating to areas of practice, we advise reviewing the relevant guidance documents on our Standards, guidance and policies page. You should also check the policies and guidance held by your organisational member or UKCP college as there may be differences in specific codes of practice and ethics in relation to your psychotherapeutic modality.
Who do I contact if I have a legal query?
For all legal queries, we recommend contacting the legal helpline of your professional indemnity insurance provider.
Additionally, where the query relates to an area covered by legislation, we recommend reviewing any regulatory guidance issued by the relevant government department.
How long should I keep client notes/records?
Normally, our members will retain records for 7 years, as this is suggested as general best practice. However, your UKCP college and organisational member may have slightly differing requirements, as not all modalities require that notes be taken.
In addition to your organisation or UKCP college’s requirements, you should also consult with your professional indemnity insurance’s legal advice team, and the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) for information about data retention and data protection, as this can vary depending on whether you keep paper or electronic records. The ICO has useful information online.
I have a question about safeguarding issues.
We have produced safeguarding guidelines which you can refer to, along with our safeguarding protocol and code of ethics. You can find these documents on our standards, policies and guidance page.
Our Complaints Team has produced a series of guidance articles on what we are learning from the complaints received by the UKCP Complaints Team. Topics covered are ending therapy, psychotherapy contracts and confidentiality. You can find these articles on our Learning from complaints web page.
If you have a question which you’d like to see added to this page, or if you would like to ask a question of one of our team, please contact us.