European Association for Gestalt Therapy





A Training Institute, NOGT and Professional Organization are welcome to use the EAGT Ethical Code while designing their own code. Nevertheless the parts that will be taken over should be marked clearly as well as the parts that are adapted to your own local situation. If anything is skipped please motivate that. If nothing is skipped, motivate this too and please add a declaration saying that the code of your TI/NOGT/Professional Organization is the same as the one of EAGT and that the members submit themselves to this code. This must go with an explanation to whom (individual members, institutional members, coaches, therapists etc.) the code is applicable.


Also an elaborated Complaints and Appeal procedure must be developed, worked out for your own particular organization. The EAGT Ethical committee does not agree by just taking over the EAGT procedures. It is okay to use them but an own version needs to be made.

The EAGT Ethical Committee (EEC) advice is to do this work in English, and only translate it into your own language after the EEC has approved your code and Complaints and Appeals procedures.


Furthermore, the role and position of an independent functioning Ethics Committee as an organ of the TI/NOGT/Professional organization that is executing the Code of Ethics, must be clearly described. This should be mentioned in the statutes of the TI/NOGT/Professional organization.


The EAGT code deals with:

1. Competence;

2. The client-therapist relationship;

3. Confidentiality;

4. Contracting with clients;

5. Advertising;

6. Safety;

7. Exceptional circumstances;

8. Managing of therapist’s role in society;

9. Relationships with former clients;

10. Legal proceedings.


In every designed code the authors have to elaborate the above-mentioned 10 topics in a sufficient way. This is to be judged by the EEC.


Furthermore every code has to fulfil the following demands:

- The anonymity of the member complaint against must be protected.


The EAGT Code of Ethics has been revised by the Ethics Committee which was nominated and elected during the Members Meeting in Palermo, Italy October 1998. Udi-Jutta Schneewind (Germany), Anna Rita Ravenna (Italy), Synnøve Jørstad (Norway) and Dick Lompa (The Netherlands) were the members.


Responsible for the Complaints Procedure and the Appeals Procedure, which have been accepted by the members during a Members Meeting, were Synnøve Jørstad, Lynda Osborne and Dick Lompa.


The present Ethics Committee is represented by Joppie Bakker from The Netherlands, Chair of Ethics Committee (contact address  ), Jan Roubal from Czech Republic, Elisabeth Reed from France and Anna Hélène Fellman from Norway.



      Code of Ethics and Professional Practice:




This is the new edition of a Code of Ethics and Professional Practice for all individual and institutional members of the European Association for Gestalt Therapy. The purpose of this code is twofold; firstly, to define general values and principles and to establish standards of professional conduct for Gestalt Therapists and Gestalt Training Institutes, and, secondly, to inform and protect those members of the public who seek their services.


Gestalt Therapists are responsible for the observation of the principles inherent in the Code of Ethics and the Professional Practice and are to use this code as the basis of good practice rather than a set of minimal requirements.


These codes are beneficial not only for the protection of clients, but are also meant to protect the therapist by establishing standards of conduct that clarify the boundaries of practice and accountability in the work setting.


The general aim of psychotherapy is to promote the psychophysical and socio-environmental well being of the individuals, groups and community at large within the psychotherapeutic relationship (preferred setting).  Gestalt therapy recognizes these goals in general, and in particular the subjectivity of the well being of the individual as a phenomenological entity within their field.  Since the realization of this specific goal is implemented through a dialogical approach grounded in the recognition of the autonomy and self-regulation of the individual, these codes of practice offer a meeting place for the resolution of difficulties between two or more parties.  The resolution of difficulties for Gestalt Therapists is attained through dialogue and exchange as opposed to a hierarchical system of judgment and consequences.


These codes are applicable to all individual and institutional members of the European Association for Gestalt Therapy on an international level.  When a discrepancy between this code and national codes occur, the conditions of the national code take preference.  This code is subject to revision in the event that it proves inadequate in the practical application as standards of professional conduct.

The code is divided into two sections.  The first section states those values and principles that are inalienable rights of the individual.  The second section demonstrates guidelines that honour and protect these rights.


All members of the EAGT agree to have a complaints procedure to report and evaluate the violations of their Code of Ethics and Professional Practice.

Each member will adopt and adhere to, together with the Code of Ethics and Professional Practice, the rules for Complaints Procedures.


The EAGT Ethics Committee is responsible for maintaining an overview of the Code of Ethics and Complaints Procedures for national umbrella organizations and, where relevant, national awarding organizations.  Click here if you would like to read to complete document.