The Oregon State Board of Licensed Social Workers (Board) is the oversight regulatory agency responsible for licensing, regulating and disciplining regulated social workers in Oregon and is governed by the Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) Chapters 675 and 676, as well as Oregon Administrative Rule(s) (OAR), Chapter 877.
The Board is responsible for conducting investigations into allegations of misconduct, ethical complaints, background investigations, unlicensed practice, and other related complaint, involving licensees and applicants as part of the Board’s public protection role and statutory authority. The Board’s Compliance unit is comprised of a Senior Compliance Specialist who oversees the investigations, a Compliance Investigator responsible for conducting and completing assigned investigations, and, as needed, Contract Investigators to assist with cases.
Complaints to the Board and Confidentiality
The Board accepts written complaints from individuals who have concerns regarding the conduct of licensees. In accordance with ORS 676.175, all information supplied to the Board pertaining to complaints are held strictly confidential and can be disclosed only to the extent necessary for the Board to conduct its investigation. The identity of complainants cannot be disclosed and is strictly protected by law and the Board. Confidentiality provisions also mean that, after a complaint is filed, the Board can only confirm to a complainant whether the complaint investigation is still ongoing, but cannot provide specific status or progress updates.
Once an investigation is complete by the assigned Investigator, the case is presented to the Consumer Protection Committee (CPC) of the Board in an Executive Session meeting, which is not open to the public. The CPC then provides a consensus report to the full Board as to how the case may be adjudicated. The Board members vote on the case disposition during the Public Session portion of a scheduled Board meeting.
As a complainant, the Board will inform you in writing of the outcome once the investigation has been completed and the complaint resolved by the Board. If discipline results, that disciplinary action is public information and any individual may request a copy of the Board’s Order(s) issued in the case. If the Board voted to close or dismiss the investigation, the only information that can be provided is a written notice to the complainant that there was a dismissal or closure.
The Investigation process can take some time, though the Compliance Staff moves as quickly as possible while honoring the need to be thorough, consistent and fair. Due to the current open case load and Board resources, investigation cases can take on average, up to nine (9) months to complete and present to the Board for review and action. We appreciate your cooperation and patience during the process. Board Compliance Staff review and investigate each complaint filed within the jurisdiction of the Board.
If You Wish to File a Complaint
State of Oregon, Board of Licensed Social Workers
Attention: Compliance Department
3218 Pringle Road SE, Suite #240
- Be as specific and thorough as possible in detailing for the Board, the exact ways in which you believe the licensee has violated one or more of the Board’s laws or Rules. Please identify people and provide copies of records that verify your complaint.
- Keep a copy of all correspondence that you submit to the board for your records.
- Please review Division 30 (Code of Ethics) and Division 40 (Complaint Procedures) carefully. It is very helpful to the Consumer Protection Committee if you can cite the specific Administrative Rule that you feel has been violated.
All information supplied to the Board pertaining to complaints is held confidential and cannot be disclosed to the public. This law is ORS 676.160 - 676.180.
The Board can only provide a limited amount of information about the complaint and the progress of the investigation to the complainant. However, if the Board needs further information to resolve the complaint, a representative of the Board will contact you directly.
Related Laws and Rules