Legally, a minor cannot provide consent without the agreement of a legal guardian. By law the legal guardian is considered the client even if he or she never directly receives treatment. This means that the legal guardian has all the rights and privileges normally reserved for only the individual receiving treatment.
However, the legal guardian’s unrestricted access to confidential information can be counter-therapeutic. When the minor receiving treatment is not protected by the same confidentiality normally reserved for an adult, he or she might be disinclined to share information that might otherwise contribute to the therapeutic process.