Social work practice in Newfoundland and Labrador (NL) is governed by provincial legislation, the Social Workers Act. NLCSW is the regulatory body for social work in NL and grants the Registered Social Worker (RSW) designation through a formal registration process. This designation is required to practice social work or use the title ‘social worker’ in this province.

The following information applies to applicants who obtained their social work education outside Canada and the United States.

Applicants must apply to the Canadian Association of Social Workers (CASW) for an Assessment of International Credentials. This process determines if the international degree is equivalent to a Canadian Bachelor or Master of Social Work degree.

Applicants not granted Canadian equivalency can obtain information regarding next steps under the Questions and Answers section of the CASW website.

Applicants granted Canadian equivalency can proceed with the NLCSW application process outlined below.

Application Process
  1. As part of the CASW assessment process, complete the CASW waiver form. This form authorizes CASW to share the assessment results, including official social work transcripts, with NLCSW.
  2. Contact registration@nlcsw.cato request access to NLCSW’s online application. As part of this email, provide your full name, mailing address, primary email, primary phone number and date of birth.
  3. Complete the online application, including payment of applicable fees:
    • $100 non-refundable application processing fee
    • $400 active registration fee. The fee is prorated to half for first time registrants after October 1 of a given registration year.
  4. Ensure proof of identity is available to upload as part of the personal information step of the online application.Acceptable proof of identity includes current government issued photo identification which includes the date and year of birth of the applicant.

    The photo identification must be issued in the same name as the application for registration.

  5. The personal information step of the online application contains questions regarding language. Review NLCSW’s English Language Proficiency Fact Sheet  to determine if additional language testing may be required.
  6. Submit a criminal record check and vulnerable sector inquiry.
    Applicants From Within Canada: Submit a criminal record check and vulnerable sector inquiry, produced within the last 3 months from:

    Applicants From Outside of Canada: A police certificate issued by the federal government for immigration to Canada.

    More information is available on the Government of Canada website.

    Paper format can be mailed to NLCSW’s mailing address; electronic format can be emailed to

  7. Applicants previously or currently registered as a social worker in another jurisdiction, submit a completed verification of registration form.
  8. The successful completion of the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) exam is a condition of active registration for:
    • Applicants who graduated from an accredited social work degree program more than 3 years ago and have never been registered
    • Applicants previously registered as a social worker but let their registration lapse for 3 years or moreMore information is available under the ASWB exam sub-menu.

    Once all the required information has been received and reviewed by NLCSW, applicants will receive a status update via email.

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