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What do I do if a client has died and their family ask for their notes?

When a client has died, the professional duty of confidentiality persists. You may only use information about a client for the purposes that it was provided to you, and you may only release information to someone who is entitled to it. Exceptions to maintaining confidentiality such as in a situation of safety concerns directly relating to harm to or from the client would only apply when the client is still living.

This means that you may not disclose information in a client’s records unless by legal order of a court. Our Standards of Conduct, Performance and Ethics has a section on confidentiality (Section 3).

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