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Licensure Overview

Illinois statute requires that any person engaged as a social worker (except in some cases if employed by the United States government or in some cases by the state of Illinois—and only if verified by IDFPR) must be licensed. No person may represent themselves as a licensed social worker or licensed clinical social worker without obtaining the proper license.


The above links to our licensure information are provided as a service to Illinois social workers. We have provided as much information as possible relating to licensing, the licensure process, and supervision on our website. However, this information may change before the chapter updates our website; therefore, you should verify all information with the Illinois Department of Financial & Professional Regulation (IDFPR).

  • Licensing Questions: All specific questions concerning licensure, an individual license, or a particular application for licensure MUST be directed to IDFPR

  • PEL: If you have questions regarding the Professional Educator License (PEL) please contact the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) at 217.782.4321. 

  • Licensing Exam: To register for the licensing exam, you must contact the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) who issues the exam. 

Unfortunately, we do not have any other additional resources (other than what is on this website) or special access to assist you in this process. We do sympathize with you regarding the wait time and difficulty of navigating the system. We can only encourage you to stay on hold and keep at it; eventually you will get through and will receive the answer from IDFPR and/or ISBE you need. 

                                                            NASW MEMBERS ONLY: As a benefit to current NASW members, the       

                                                            NASW-Illinois Chapter provides access to staff members who are

                                                            knowledgeable about common licensing questions. If you are a current NASW

                                                            member, submit your query through the NASW Illinois MyNASW

                                                            discussion board.

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