IDFPR Update on Recent Social Work Graduates Practicing as Social Workers
Updated: Oct 13
The NASW-Illinois Chapter (NASW-IL) was just updated by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) regarding updates to administrative rules for recent social work graduates in Illinois.
Under Illinois law, graduates from a social work program may work as a social worker while they accumulate the necessary hours for licensure as long as they are identified as a social worker in some sort of trainee role and are actively acquiring supervision hours from an LCSW per the administrative rules.
However, the law does not allow graduates from a social work program to continue to work as a social worker once they acquire all of their supervision hours. With the current COVID-19 pandemic delaying testing, this has created an issue where graduates from a social work program may have all the requirements to sit for the test but are still unable to do so. Under existing law, they may be considered practicing without a license.
NASW-IL has been working with IDFPR and the governor's office to address this issue, and we are please to announce the department has released a guidance document to address our concerns.
Under this guidance, IDFPR has clarified that you will not be in violation of the social work practice act nor the administrative rules if you continue to work in your current capacity even though you have collected all of your supervision hours.
Graduates will still need to fulfill the following requirements:
Be designated as a social worker in a trainee role;
Continue to work under the supervision of an appropriately licensed supervisor; and
Be actively pursuing your social work license.
We strongly recommend you continue to document your hours even after receiving pre-approval from IDFPR to sit for the licensure test. We also strongly recommend applying for licensure as soon as you are eligible to get into the testing queue.
For updates on other IDFPR-related news including telehealth practice and licensure requirements, please see previously shared news links below:
Updates on Telehealth Practice During COVID-19: https://www.naswil.org/post/updates-on-the-telehealth-practice-during-covid-19
Updates on 2021 Licensure Renewal: https://www.naswil.org/post/updates-on-2021-licensure-renewal
NASW-IL Efforts Successful in Getting In-Person CEU Requirements Waived by IDFPR: https://www.naswil.org/post/breaking-news-nasw-il-efforts-successful-in-getting-in-person-ceu-requirements-waived-by-idfpr