2011 Connecticut Code
Title 52 Civil Actions
Chapter 899 Evidence
Sec. 52-146k. Privileged communications between battered women's or sexual assault counselor and victim.

      Sec. 52-146k. Privileged communications between battered women's or sexual assault counselor and victim. (a) As used in this section:

      (1) "Battered women's center" means any office, shelter, host home or center offering assistance to battered women through crisis intervention, emergency shelter referral and medical and legal advocacy, and which meets the Department of Social Services criteria of service provision for such centers.

      (2) "Battered women's counselor" means any person engaged in a battered women's center (A) who has undergone a minimum of twenty hours of training which shall include, but not be limited to, the dynamics of battering, crisis intervention, communication skills, working with diverse populations, an overview of the state criminal justice system and information about state and community resources for battered women, (B) who is certified as a counselor by the battered women's center which provided such training, (C) who is under the control of a direct service supervisor of a battered women's center, and (D) whose primary purpose is the rendering of advice, counsel and assistance to, and the advocacy of the cause of, battered women.

      (3) "Confidential communication" means information transmitted between a victim of a battering or a sexual assault and a battered women's counselor or sexual assault counselor in the course of that relationship and in confidence by a means which, so far as the victim is aware, does not disclose the information to a third person other than any person who is present to further the interests of the victim in the consultation or any person to whom disclosure is reasonably necessary for the transmission of the information or for the accomplishment of the purposes for which such counselor is consulted, and includes all information received by, and any advice, report or working paper given or made by, such counselor in the course of the relationship with the victim.

      (4) "Rape crisis center" means any office, institution or center offering assistance to victims of sexual assault and their families through crisis intervention, medical and legal advocacy and follow-up counseling and which meets the Department of Public Health criteria of service provision for such centers.

      (5) "Sexual assault counselor" means any person engaged in a rape crisis center who (A) has undergone a minimum of twenty hours of training which shall include, but not be limited to, the dynamics of sexual assault and incest, crisis intervention, communication skills, working with diverse populations, an overview of the state criminal justice system, information about hospital and medical systems and information about state and community resources for sexual assault victims, (B) is certified as a counselor by the sexual assault center which has provided such training, (C) is under the control of a direct services supervisor of a rape crisis center, and (D) whose primary purpose is the rendering of advice, counseling and assistance to, and the advocacy of the cause of, victims of sexual assault.

      (6) "Victim" means any person who consults a battered women's counselor or a sexual assault counselor for the purpose of securing advice, counseling or assistance concerning a mental, physical or emotional condition caused by a battering or a sexual assault.

      (b) On or after October 1, 1983, a battered women's counselor or a sexual assault counselor shall not disclose any confidential communications made to such counselor at any time by a victim in any civil or criminal case or proceeding or in any legislative or administrative proceeding unless the victim making the confidential communications waives the privilege, provided under no circumstances shall the location of the battered women's center or rape crisis center or the identity of the battered women's counselor or sexual assault counselor be disclosed in any civil or criminal proceeding. Any request made on or after October 1, 1983, by the defendant or the state for such confidential communications shall be subject to the provisions of this subsection.

      (c) When a victim is deceased or has been adjudged incompetent by a court of competent jurisdiction, the guardian of the victim or the executor or administrator of the estate of the victim may waive the privilege established by this section.

      (d) A minor may knowingly waive the privilege established by this section. In any instance where the minor is, in the opinion of the court, incapable of knowingly waiving the privilege, the parent or guardian of the minor may waive the privilege on behalf of the minor, provided such parent or guardian is not the defendant and does not have a relationship with the defendant such that he has an interest in the outcome of the proceeding.

      (e) The privilege established by this section shall not apply: (1) In matters of proof concerning chain of custody of evidence; (2) in matters of proof concerning the physical appearance of the victim at the time of the injury; or (3) where the battered women's counselor or sexual assault counselor has knowledge that the victim has given perjured testimony and the defendant or the state has made an offer of proof that perjury may have been committed.

      (f) The failure of any party to testify as a witness pursuant to the provisions of this section shall not result in an inference unfavorable to the state's cause or to the cause of the defendant.

      (P.A. 83-429; P.A. 85-112; P.A. 93-262, S. 1, 87; 93-381, S. 9, 39; P.A. 95-257, S. 12, 21, 58.)

      History: P.A. 85-112 amended Subsec. (b) by adding provision that communications made to counselor at any time are privileged communications on or after October 1, 1983; P.A. 93-262 authorized substitution of commissioner and department of social services for commissioner and department of human resources, effective July 1, 1993; P.A. 93-381 replaced department of health services with department of public health and addiction services, effective July 1, 1993; P.A. 95-257 replaced Commissioner and Department of Public Health and Addiction Services with Commissioner and Department of Public Health, effective July 1, 1995.

      Cited. 199 C. 693. Cited. 200 C. 734. Cited. 201 C. 211. Cited. 202 C. 259. Cited. 204 C. 259. Cited. 211 C. 555. Cited. 230 C. 43. Cited. 240 C. 658. Cited. 242 C. 1.

      Cited. 8 CA 216. Cited. 10 CA 103. Cited. 23 CA 509.

      Subsec. (b):

      Defendant's communication with her counselor made before effective date of act held erroneously admitted at her trial held after the effective date. 204 C. 259. P.A. 85-112 cited. Id.

Disclaimer: These codes may not be the most recent version. Connecticut may have more current or accurate information. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site or the information linked to on the state site. Please check official sources.