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Reinstating your lapsed credential

The AASW has introduced a new reinstatement process. This will provide clearer guidelines and a set of requirements to assist members to plan their reinstatement pathway.

An aspect of this new process is changes to the recency of practice requirements. These have been developed to support flexible avenues for social workers to reinstate their credential status following periods of leave, whilst also ensuring that their practice skills and knowledge continue to have currency to support both safe practice for social workers, and their clients in the community.

The requirements include specific evidence to verify recency of practice requirements as detailed in Step 3 below. Please follow the steps below to apply for the reinstatement of your AASW credential.

Step 1: AASW membership

You must hold current membership of the AASW. If you are no longer a member of the AASW you will first need to re-join the AASW. Join here.

Step 2: Meet the CPD requirements

You must meet the CPD requirements for your specific credential in the current or previous financial year and log these on the ‘My CPD’ portal on the AASW website.

  • Refer to the AASW CPD Policy for information about CPD goals, categories, activities and annual requirements. You will need to meet the CPD goals for each credential you are applying for if you have more than one credential to reinstate.
  • The ‘My CPD’ portal can be accessed on the website here. This includes tips and instructions via the CPD User Guide.
  • To record your CPD, you will need to log in using the username and password associated with your membership.
  • If you have been on leave for carer, illness or maternity purposes, you may be eligible to apply for a CPD reduction via the CPD team.
  • If you require any assistance regarding your CPD, please contact

Step 3: Meet the recency of practice requirements

To ensure safe, professional practice, you are required to meet the recency of practice requirements annually. You must demonstrate that you meet the recency of practice requirements at the time of lodging your reinstatement application. You will be required to provide documentary evidence to verify your recency of practice in a specific social work practice role required by your lapsed credential.

The roles/s you are putting forward in your reinstatement application must meet the social work practice requirements in the setting/field for the credential in which you are reinstating. Please refer to the eligibility requirements for Mental Health. For all other credentials, please refer to the Frequently Asked Questions and check the eligibility requirements under your specific credential.

Meeting your practice hours

There are three ways in which you can meet the reinstatement recency of practice requirements. These allow members who have been absent from their profession, for different reasons and for different periods, to have fairer consideration of their circumstances. When submitting your reinstatement application for your lapsed credential, you must meet only ONE of the following to meet the recency of practice requirements:

  • A minimum of 750 hours over the previous five years; OR
  • A minimum of 450 hours over the previous three years; OR
  • A minimum of 150 hours over the previous 12 months.

If the AASW assessor considers that your recency of practice meets the above requirements, but there is concern about the distribution of your experience (e.g. you met the 750 hours five years ago, but have no experience in the four years prior to your reinstatement) a further requirement to submit a CPD plan may be requested by the AASW credentials team as evidence of your currency of practice knowledge. This will be advised as part of the assessment process.

Exemptions to the recency of practice requirements will not be considered. The sliding scale has been proposed to enable flexibility given the range of situations faced by social workers seeking to reinstate their AASW credential. This includes those who have taken an extended break from practice, who can then either draw on their past practice to meet the recency of practice requirements, or alternatively complete 150 hours of supervised social work practice relevant to their credential over the previous 12 months, prior to submitting their reinstatement application.

How to provide evidence

You must provide evidence to verify employment history including hours worked and competence: You must include with your application:

  • A current Curriculum Vitae that outlines the positions that meet the hours required.
  • A referee statement from your employer or supervisor confirming the nature and period of your social work employment. If you are using more than one job to meet the hours required, you will require a referee statement for each position (i.e. if you are using three positions, you will require three referee statements). Referee statements are specific to each credential, and are part of each reinstatement form
  • Position description(s) for each position you are using to meet the required hours.

Step 4: How to apply for your reinstatement

Applications for reinstatement must be made using the reinstatement specific to your lapsed credential. Please choose the correct form for your credential that has lapsed.

Completion of a reinstatement application is required for each lapsed credential, accompanied with the $100 fee. This is in addition to the annual membership fee for the credential.

Applications for each credential are processed separately, because each credential has CPD requirements and practice requirements that are specific to that credential. If you have more than one credential requiring reinstatement, you must submit a separate reinstatement form and pay the fee for each reinstatement application.

Application forms

Each of the following credentials has an associated reinstatement form. These credentials have been in operation for more than one year.

Mental Health: Complete your reinstatement application form for your AMHSW status.

There is also an AMHSW referee reinstatement form.

Family Violence: Complete your reinstatement application form for your AFVSW status.

There is also an AFVSW referee reinstatement form.

Clinical: Complete your reinstatement application form for your ACSW status.

There is also an ACSW referee reinstatement form.

Further information

  • Credential reinstatement applications may not be accepted in certain circumstances; this may include situations where the credential has undergone significant change since the applicant made their initial application.
  • Currently, this applies to AMHSW credentials awarded prior to October 2014. In this case, if a social worker’s AMHSW status has lapsed, a reinstatement will not be accepted and a new application will be required to ensure that the applicant has met the current criteria based on the Practice Standards for Mental Health Social Workers (2014).

If you require further clarity about the reinstatement process, please contact the credentials team via

Referee statement forms

Accredited Mental Health Social Worker Referee Statement

Accredited Family Violence Social Worker Referee Statement

Accredited Clinical Social Worker Referee Statement

AASW - Australian Association of Social Workers