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Minor Rights

The Rights of Minors in Oregon to seek Treatment and Assessment for Mental Health and Chemical Dependency

Mental health and chemical dependency (ORS 109.675)

A minor who is 14 years or older may access outpatient mental health, drug or alcohol treatment (excluding methadone) without parental consent.

These services may include:

  • Seeking help from a psychiatrist or psychologist;
  • Seeking mental health therapy from a doctor or social worker; and
  • Seeking help for drug or alcohol use.

Providers are expected to involve parents by the end of the minor’s mental health, drug, or alcohol treatment unless:

  • • The parent refuses involvement.
  • • Clear clinical indications to the contrary exist and are documented in the treatment record;
  • • There is identified sexual abuse; or
  • • The minor has been emancipated and/or separated from the parent for at least 90 days.

109.675 Right to diagnosis or treatment for mental or emotional disorder or chemical dependency without parental consent.

(1) A minor 14 years of age or older may obtain, without parental knowledge or consent, outpatient diagnosis or treatment of a mental or emotional disorder or a chemical dependency, excluding methadone maintenance, by a physician licensed by the Oregon Medical Board, a psychologist licensed by the State Board of Psychologist Examiners, a nurse practitioner registered by the Oregon State Board of Nursing

For mental health and chemical dependency services, the provider may disclose health information to a minor’s parent or guardian per ORS 109.680 if:

  • It is clinically appropriate and in the minor’s best interests;
  • The minor must be admitted to a detoxification program;

-OR-

  • The minor is at risk of committing suicide and requires hospital admission.
  • Although minors age 14 and older can access outpatient mental health and chemical dependency services independently, parents are expected to be involved in their treatment at some point.
  • Involvement does not mean that adults always have access to a minor’s mental health or chemical dependency records.
  • Federal regulation 42 CFR 2.14 states that if a minor is able to self-consent for drug or alcohol treatment, the minor’s treatment records cannot be disclosed without the minor’s written consent (including to the parent or guardian).