Virginia Regulatory Town Hall

Final Text


Regulatory review changes
Stage: Final

Part II
Requirements for Licensure

18VAC140-20-40. Requirements for licensure by examination as a licensed clinical social worker.

Every applicant for examination for licensure as a licensed clinical social worker shall:

1. Meet the education requirements prescribed in 18VAC140-20-49 and experience requirements prescribed in 18VAC140-20-50.

2. Submit a completed application to the board office within two years of completion of supervised experience to include:

a. Documentation, on the appropriate forms, of the successful completion of the supervised experience requirements of 18VAC140-20-50 along with documentation of the supervisor's out-of-state license where applicable. Applicants whose former supervisor is deceased, or whose whereabouts is unknown, shall submit to the board a notarized affidavit from the present chief executive officer of the agency, corporation or partnership in which the applicant was supervised. The affidavit shall specify dates of employment, job responsibilities, supervisor's name and last known address, and the total number of hours spent by the applicant with the supervisor in face-to-face supervision;

b. The application fee prescribed in 18VAC140-20-30;

c. Official transcript or documentation submitted from the appropriate institutions of higher education that verifies successful completion of educational requirements set forth in 18VAC140-20-49;

d. Documentation of any other health or mental health licensure or certification, if applicable; and

e. A current report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB).

3. Provide evidence of passage of the examination prescribed in 18VAC140-20-70.


18VAC140-20-50. Experience requirements for a licensed clinical social worker.

A. Supervised experience. Supervised post-master's degree experience without prior written board approval will not be accepted toward licensure, except supervision obtained in another United States jurisdiction may be accepted if it met the requirements of that jurisdiction.

1. Registration. An individual who proposes to obtain supervised post-master's degree experience in Virginia shall, prior to the onset of such supervision, or whenever there is an addition or change of supervised practice, supervisor, clinical social work services or location:

a. Register on a form provided by the board and completed by the supervisor and the supervised individual; and

b. Pay the registration of supervision fee set forth in 18VAC140-20-30.

2. Hours. The applicant shall have completed a minimum of 3,000 hours of supervised post-master's degree experience in the delivery of clinical social work services and in ancillary services that support such delivery. A minimum of one hour and a maximum of four hours of face-to-face supervision shall be provided per 40 hours of work experience for a total of at least 100 hours. No more than 50 of the 100 hours may be obtained in group supervision, nor shall there be more than six persons being supervised in a group unless approved in advance by the board. The board may consider alternatives to face-to-face supervision if the applicant can demonstrate an undue burden due to hardship, disability or geography.

a. Supervised experience shall be acquired in no less than two nor more than four consecutive years.

b. Supervisees shall obtain throughout their hours of supervision a minimum of 1,380 hours of supervised experience in face-to-face client contact in the delivery of clinical social work services. The remaining hours may be spent in ancillary services supporting the delivery of clinical social work services.

3. An individual who does not complete the supervision requirement after four consecutive years of supervised experience may request an extension of up to 12 months. The request for an extension shall include evidence that demonstrates extenuating circumstances that prevented completion of the supervised experience within four consecutive years.

B. Requirements for supervisors.

1. The supervisor shall hold an active, unrestricted license as a licensed clinical social worker in the jurisdiction in which the clinical services are being rendered with at least two years of post-licensure clinical social work experience. The board may consider supervisors with commensurate qualifications if the applicant can demonstrate an undue burden due to geography or disability or if supervision was obtained in another United States jurisdiction.

2. The supervisor shall have received professional training in supervision, consisting of a three credit-hour graduate course in supervision or at least 14 hours of continuing education offered by a provider approved under 18VAC140-20-105. The graduate course or hours of continuing education in supervision shall be obtained by a supervisor within five years immediately preceding registration of supervision.

3. The supervisor shall not provide supervision for a family member or provide supervision for anyone with whom he has a dual relationship.

4. The board may consider supervisors from jurisdictions outside of Virginia who provided clinical social work supervision if they have commensurate qualifications but were either (i) not licensed because their jurisdiction did not require licensure or (ii) were not designated as clinical social workers because the jurisdiction did not require such designation.

C. Responsibilities of supervisors. The supervisor shall:

1. Be responsible for the social work activities of the supervisee as set forth in this subsection once the supervisory arrangement is accepted;

2. Review and approve the diagnostic assessment and treatment plan of a representative sample of the clients assigned to the applicant during the course of supervision. The sample should be representative of the variables of gender, age, diagnosis, length of treatment and treatment method within the client population seen by the applicant. It is the applicant's responsibility to assure the representativeness of the sample that is presented to the supervisor;

3. Provide supervision only for those social work activities for which the supervisor has determined the applicant is competent to provide to clients;

4. Provide supervision only for those activities for which the supervisor is qualified by education, training and experience;

5. Evaluate the supervisee's knowledge and document minimal competencies in the areas of an identified theory base, application of a differential diagnosis, establishing and monitoring a treatment plan, development and appropriate use of the professional relationship, assessing the client for risk of imminent danger, understanding the requirements of law for reporting any harm or risk of harm to self or others, and implementing a professional and ethical relationship with clients;

6. Be available to the applicant on a regularly scheduled basis for supervision;

7. Maintain documentation, for five years post-supervision, of which clients were the subject of supervision; and

8. Ensure that the board is notified of any change in supervision or if supervision has ended or been terminated by the supervisor.

D. Responsibilities of supervisees.

1. Supervisees may not directly bill for services rendered or in any way represent themselves as independent, autonomous practitioners, or licensed clinical social workers.

2. During the supervised experience, supervisees shall use their names and the initials of their degree, and the title "Supervisee in Social Work" in all written communications.

3. Clients shall be informed in writing of the supervisee's status and the supervisor's name, professional address, and phone number.

4. Supervisees shall not supervise the provision of clinical social work services provided by another person.