LCSW requirements by state

LCSW requirements by state

Licensed clinical social workers play an important role in every state. They counsel clients with mental health and emotional issues, often concerning family or substance abuse. LCSW keeps detailed records about each meeting and often reports to courts and physicians. To conduct their duties, candidates need to meet LCSW requirements by state. 

 

The LCSW requirements by state vary slightly. You can find your state requirements below.

Alabama

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application: $75
  • Master’s Exam: $260
  • Renewal Fee: $100

Steps

  • Earn your accredited degree
  • Apply for the licensure
  • Complete supervised hours
  • Take exam

Renewal and Continuing Education

To renew your certification, you must complete 30 hours of continuing education through approved providers. 

Alaska

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application: $50
  • Temporary License: $50
  • Master’s Exam: $260
  • Licensure Fee: $250
  • Renewal Fee: $250

 

Steps

  • Earn your accredited degree
  • Apply for the licensure
  • Working in a supervised setting for the required minimum number of hours
  • Take the exam
  • Submit the fee and paperwork

Renewal and Continuing Education

To renew your certification, you must complete 45 hours of continuing education through approved providers. 

Arizona

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application: $250
  • Temporary License: $50
  • Non-independent practice license: $50
  • Master’s Exam: $260
  • Licensure Fee: $250
  • Renewal Fee: $350

Steps

  • Earn your accredited degree
  • Apply for the licensure
  • Submitting a fingerprint card for a background check
  • Apply for licensure to work in a supervised setting
  • Workin a supervised setting for the required minimum number of hours
  • Take the exam
  • Submit the fee and paperwork

Renewal and Continuing Education

To renew your certification, you must complete 30 hours of continuing education through approved providers. Licenses need to be renewed every two years. 

Arkansas

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application: $100
  • Master’s Exam: $260
  • Renewal Fee: $80

Steps

  • Earn your accredited degree
  • Submit your fingerprints to the state for a background check
  • Submit an application package
  • Apply for permission to take the exam
  • Pass the exam within six months of approval
  • Complete 4,000 hours of supervised work

Renewal and Continuing Education

To renew your certification, you must complete 48 hours of continuing education through approved providers. 

California

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application: $100
  • LCSW California Written Exam: $100
  • LCSW Clinical Vignette Exam: $100
  • Master’s Exam: $260
  • Renewal Fee: $110

Steps

  • Earn your degree
  • Request and submit your transcriptions
  • Schedule and complete live fingerprint scanning
  • Register as an Associate Social Work to complete your supervised practice hours
  • Apply for the LCSW and complete the exams

Renewal and Continuing Education

To renew your certification, you must complete 36 hours of continuing education through approved providers. 

Credentialing

California has some of the most rigorous licensing procedures in the 50 states. The state requires a master’s degree and passing the California Law and Ethics exam in the first year of working as an ASW. 

Colorado

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application: $185
  • Master’s Exam: $260
  • Jurisprudence Exam: $18

Steps

  • Earn your accredited master’s degree
  • Request transcripts
  • Take the Colorado Mental Health Profession’s Jurisprudence exam
  • Complete the LSW Application and the healthcare professions profile
  • Apply for the exam
  • Register in the Colorado Registered Psychotherapist Database as an LSW
  • Work for 3,360 supervised hours
  • Submit proof of your work to the Colorado Board
  • Send your LCSW application and processing fee

Connecticut

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application: $315
  • Master’s Exam: $260
  • Renewal Fee: $190

Steps

  • Earn your accredited degree
  • Send your transcripts to the Board
  • Apply to the Board 
  • Take the ASWB exam 
  • Complete 3,000 hours of supervised work
  • Submit verification of your hours
  • Complete the clinical exam

Renewal and Continuing Education

To renew your certification, you must complete 15 hours annually. 

Delaware

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application: $140
  • Master’s Exam: $260

Steps

Complete your degree program

Finish 3,200 hours of supervised work 

Submit a background check with fingerprinting

Pass national clinical social work exam within two years 

Renewal and Continuing Education

To renew your certification, you must complete 45 hours every two years.

Florida

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Master’s Exam: $260
  • Renewal: $130

Steps

  • Complete your accredited degree
  • Register as a licensure intern 
  • Finish your supervised practice
  • Pass the national exam
  • Take these courses within six months of completing your degree
    • Eight-hour course about rules and laws
    • Two-hour course about medical errors 
    • Three-hour HIV/AIDS course
    • Two-hour domestic violence course

Renewal and Continuing Education

Florida requires license-renewal every two years. 

 

Georgia

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $100
  • Master’s Exam: $260
  • Renewal: $100

Steps

  • Complete your degree
  • Send transcripts to the Board 
  • Complete a background check
  • Apply to take the exam 
  • Pass the exam
  • Work in a supervised practice for three years

Renewal and Continuing Education

Georgia conducts random audits to determine if they are compliant with licensing rules. 

Hawaii

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $60
  • Master’s Exam: $260

Steps

  • Complete your accredited degree
  • Send transcripts to the Board 
  • Submit your application for the generalist exam
  • Pass it within two years of approval
  • Complete 3,000 hours of supervised work in two to five years
  • Take the clinical exam 

Renewal and Continuing Education

Hawaii requires license renewal every three years. 

 

Idaho

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $60
  • AS Exam: $260
  • Renewal Fee: $35

Steps

Earn an accredited degree 

Submit a professional reference form  

Pass the exam

Renewal and Continuing Education

Idaho requires LCSW to take 20 continuing education credits and renew their licenses annually. 

Illinois

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $50
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • Renewal Fee: $30

Steps

  • Complete an accredited master’s degree
  • Apply for licensure 
  • Complete supervision hours 
  • Pass the ASWB exam 

Renewal and Continuing Education

Illinois requires LCSW to take 30 continuing education credits and renew their licenses every two years. 

Indiana

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $50
  • Temporary Permit to Practice: $25
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • Renewal Fee: $50

Steps

  • Earn your accredited degree
  • Apply for a license
  • Complete a background check
  • Take the national test
  • Complete supervised work hours 

Renewal and Continuing Education

Indiana requires LCSW to take 20 continuing education credits and renew their licenses annually. 

Iowa

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $120
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • Renewal Fee: $144

Steps

Earning your accredited degree

Apply for approval to take the exam

Take the exam

Work in a supervised environment in a Board-approved plan

Renewal and Continuing Education

Iowa requires LCSW to take 27 continuing education credits every two years. 

Kansas

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $100
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • Renewal Fee: $150

Steps

  • Earn your accredited degree
  • Apply to take the exam
  • Apply for a temporary license
  • Take the exam
  • Complete your required supervised hours 
  • Complete coursework for diagnosis and treatment

Renewal and Continuing Education

Kansas requires LCSW to take 40 continuing education credits every two years. 

Kentucky

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $25
  • ASWB Exam: $260

Steps

  • Earn your accredited degree
  • Submit your transcripts
  • Apply for a temporary license 
  • Complete your work experience

Renewal and Continuing Education

Kentucky requires license renewal every three years. 

Louisiana

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $100
  • Supervised Registration Fee: $35
  • ASWB Exam: $230

Steps

  • Complete your degree
  • Complete a background check
  • Complete supervised hours
  • Take the clinical exam 

Renewal and Continuing Education

Louisiana requires LCSW to take 20 continuing education credits and renew their licenses annually. 

 

Maine

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $25
  • Criminal Background Check Fee: $21
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • License: $70

Steps

  • Complete your accredited degree
  • Complete your supervision agreement
  • Complete the application 
  • Finish your provisional, supervised hours
  • Submit three references
  • Take the exam

Renewal and Continuing Education

Maine requires LCSW to take 25 continuing education credits every two years. 

Maryland

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $100
  • Initial License Fee: $75
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • License Renewal: $261

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Submit three references
  • Apply for the initial license
  • Apply for the exam
  • Complete supervised hours
  • Take the exam

Renewal and Continuing Education

Maryland requires LCSW to renew their licenses every two years and attest that they have taken continuing-education courses. 

Massachusetts

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $173
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • License Renewal: $68

Steps

  • Complete accredited MSW degree
  • Submit a list of references
  • Take the exam
  • Complete supervised hours

Renewal and Continuing Education

Massachusetts requires LCSW to renew their licenses every other October and take continuing-education courses. 

Michigan

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $40
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • License Renewal: $75

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Submit fingerprints for a criminal background check
  • Apply to receive limited licensure
  • Take the exam
  • Complete supervised hours

Renewal and Continuing Education

Michigan requires LCSW to renew their licenses every three years and complete 45 continuing-education hours. 

Minnesota

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $45
  • Background Check Fee: $15
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • License Renewal: $262.35

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Develop a supervision plan
  • Complete background check
  • Apply for your license
  • Take the exam
  • Complete supervised hours
  • Take your clinical exam
  • Apply for your license with your supervisor

Renewal and Continuing Education

Minnesota requires LCSW to renew their licenses every two years and complete 40 continuing-education hours with coursework in ethics.

Mississippi

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $45
  • Initial License Fee: $100
  • Fingerprint Card: $50
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • Clinical Exam: $260
  • License Renewal: $100

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Complete background check
  • Submit a supervisory plan
  • Submit three references
  • Apply for license
  • Take the exam
  • Complete supervised hours

Renewal and Continuing Education

Mississippi requires LCSW to renew their licenses every two years and complete continuing-education hours.

Missouri

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Background Check: $44.80
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • Register for Supervision: $25
  • License Renewal: $58

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Submit transcripts to the Board
  • Complete background check
  • Submit a supervisory plan
  • Submit three references
  • Apply for license
  • Take the exam
  • Complete supervised hours

Renewal and Continuing Education

Missouri requires LCSW to renew their licenses every two years.

Montana

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $50
  • Background Check: $29.50
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • Original License Fee: $50

 

Steps

  • Complete accredited MSW degree
  • Complete background check
  • Find a job with a qualified supervisor
  • Submit three mental-health references
  • Apply for license
  • Take the exam
  • Complete your supervised practice within five years

Renewal and Continuing Education

Montana requires LCSW to renew their licenses every year with 20 hours of continuing education. 

Nebraska

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Nebraska does not list their fees

Steps

  • Complete your degree
  • Apply for your license
  • Take the exam
  • Finish your work hours

Renewal and Continuing Education

Nebraska requires LCSW to renew their licenses every five years. 

Nevada

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $40
  • Fingerprinting Fee: $37.50
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • Original License Fee: $100

Steps

  • Complete accredited MSW degree
  • Apply for test in last semester of degree program
  • Complete background check
  • Develop supervision plan and complete it
  • Take the exam

Renewal and Continuing Education

Nebraska requires annual license renewals with 36 hours of continuing education completed every two years. 

New Hampshire

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $150
  • Supervision Proposal Fee: $25
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • Original License Fee: $135

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Find employment in degree area
  • Submit three references
  • Complete background check
  • Develop supervision plan for Board approval 
  • Take the exam
  • Complete post-degree work
  • Apply for license

Renewal and Continuing Education

New Hampshire requires license renewals with 40 hours of continuing education completed every two years. Coursework includes specific classes on ethics. 

 

New Jersey

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $75
  • ASWB Exam: $260

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Apply to take exam in last semester
  • Take exam
  • Complete background check
  • Apply to Board
  • Complete post-degree, supervised work

Renewal and Continuing Education

New Jersey requires license renewals every two years. 

New Mexico

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $125
  • Initial ASWB Exam: $230
  • Clinical ASWB Exam: $260

Steps

  • Complete accredited MSW degree
  • Take jurisprudence exam
  • Submit application for exam
  • Take ASWB exam
  • Complete course on New Mexico culture
  • Submit character references
  • Complete post-degree, supervised work
  • Complete clinical exam

Renewal and Continuing Education

New Mexico requires license renewals every two years with 30 continuing-education hours.  

 

New York

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $294
  • Initial ASWB Exam: $260
  • Limited Permit: $70

Steps

  • Complete accredited MSW degree
  • Complete 12 semester hours of clinical coursework
  • Complete coursework about child abuse 
  • Pass the exam
  • Complete 36 months of supervised experience under certified supervisor in licensed facility

Renewal and Continuing Education

New York requires one hour of continuing education coursework per month for three years. You must complete license renewal every three years. 

North Carolina

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $115
  • Initial ASWB Exam: $260

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Submit three references
  • Take the exam
  • Complete and submit a position statement and crisis plan
  • Submit six-month review and case study
  • Complete supervised work experience

Renewal and Continuing Education

North Carolina requires license renewal every two years with continuing education. 

North Dakota

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Fingerprint Card: $44.50
  • Application Fee: $75
  • Initial ASWB Exam: $260

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Submit three references
  • Complete state and federal background checks
  • Take exam
  • Submit supervision plan
  • Complete post-degree supervised work experience

Renewal and Continuing Education

North Dakota requires 30 hours of continuing education between each renewal period. 

Ohio

Ohio does not offer a licensing program for an LCSW. 

Oklahoma

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Background Check: $45
  • Application Fee: $150
  • Initial ASWB Exam: $260
  • Renewal Fee: $100

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Conduct a background check
  • Take the exam
  • Submit your supervised work contract to the Board
  • Complete 4,000 hours of supervised practice
  • Submit hours to Board

Renewal and Continuing Education

Oklahoma requires an annual license renewal with 16 hours of continuing education.

Oregon

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Background Check: $50
  • Initial License: $60
  • Clinical Social Work Associate Application: $150
  • LCSW Fee: $150
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • LCSW Initial License: $260

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Apply for limited license
  • Conduct a background check
  • Take the exam
  • Take the jurisprudence exam
  • Submit your supervised work plan
  • Complete supervised practice

Renewal and Continuing Education

Oregon requires licenses to be renewed every two years with continuing education hours. 

Pennsylvania

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $45
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • ASWB Clinical Exam: $260

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Apply to take exam in last semester
  • Take the exam
  • Apply for your license
  • Complete supervised hours
  • Take clinical exam

Renewal and Continuing Education

Pennsylvania requires licenses to be renewed every two years with 30 continuing education hours. 

Rhode Island

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $70
  • ASWB Exam: $260

Steps

  • Complete accredited MSW degree
  • Take the exam
  • Apply for your license
  • Complete supervised hours
  • Take clinical exam

 

Renewal and Continuing Education

Rhode Island requires licenses to be renewed every two years.

South Carolina

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $45
  • ASWB Exam: $260

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Apply for exam during last semester
  • Take the exam
  • Find a job in the field
  • Submit your supervisor contract to the Board
  • Complete the supervised work requirements
  • Take the clinical exam

Renewal and Continuing Education

South Carolina requires licenses to be renewed every two years with 40 hours of continuing education. 

South Dakota

South Dakota does not offer a LCSW certification program. 

Tennessee

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $100
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • Initial License Fee: $125

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Apply for license
  • Pass the exam
  • Complete supervised work hours
  • Take clinical exam

Renewal and Continuing Education

Tennessee requires licenses to be renewed every two years.

Texas

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $111
  • ASWB Exam: $260

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Complete criminal background check
  • Take jurisprudence exam
  • Earn initial licensure
  • Pass the exam
  • Complete supervised work hours
  • Take clinical exam

Renewal and Continuing Education

Texas requires licenses to be renewed every two years with 30 hours of continuing education. 

Utah

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $120
  • ASWB Exam: $260

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Take exam
  • Apply for lower license
  • Complete supervisory work
  • Complete clinical exam
  • Apply for advanced license

Renewal and Continuing Education

Utah requires licenses to be renewed every two years.

Vermont

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $100
  • ASWB Exam: $260

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Register with state
  • Complete supervised work
  • Take exam

Renewal and Continuing Education

Vermont requires licenses to be renewed every two years with 20 hours of continuing education. 

Virginia

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Application Fee: $100
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • Supervision Registration Fee: $25
  • Renewal Fee: $125

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Apply exam
  • Register for supervised work
  • Pass exam
  • Apply for license

Renewal and Continuing Education

Virginia requires licenses to be renewed every two years. 

Washington

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Initial Application Fee: $50
  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • Application Fee: $141
  • Initial License Fee: $125

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Register for and complete supervised work
  • Complete four-hour HIV/AIDS course
  • Pass exam

Renewal and Continuing Education

Washington requires licenses to be renewed annually with 36 hours of continuing education.

West Virginia

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • ASWB Exam: $260

Steps

  • Complete accredited degree
  • Apply to take exam in last semester
  • Complete supervised work
  • Pass exam

Renewal and Continuing Education

West Virginia requires licenses to be renewed every two years with 40 hours of continuing education.

Wisconsin

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • ASWB Exam: $260
  • Initial Credential Fee: $75
  • Contracts Exam Fee: $15
  • Status Exam Fee: $75

Steps

  • Complete accredited MSW degree
  • Apply to Board
  • Pass codes and statutes exam
  • Pass ASWB exam
  • Complete supervised hours

Renewal and Continuing Education

Wisconsin requires licenses to be renewed every two years with 30 hours of continuing education.

Wyoming

Licensed Certified Social Worker Exams and Fees

  • Initial ASWB Exam: $230
  • Application Fee: $150
  • Initial License Upgrade: $200
  • Clinical ASWB Exam: $260

Steps

  • Complete accredited MSW degree
  • Apply to Board
  • Submit three professional references
  • Pass initial exam
  • Submit supervisory work plan
  • Complete work hours
  • Pass clinical exam

 

Renewal and Continuing Education

Wyoming requires licenses to be renewed every two years with 45 hours of continuing education.

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