Social Work and the Courts Specialty Practice Section

We are social workers who perform community safety or offender assessments; provide forensic evaluations, custody and guardianship recommendations, mediation or parent coordination, or expert testimony in civil or criminal matters; or work in the areas of corrections, law enforcement, or probation/parole.

This section was developed in response to requests from a growing number of NASW members whose professional roles and responsibilities or expertise intersect with the legal system. This section will be of interest to social workers who perform community safety or offender assessments; provide forensic evaluations, custody and guardianship recommendations, mediation or parent coordination, or expert testimony in civil or criminal matters; or work in the areas of corrections, law enforcement, or probation/parole.

From Social Work and the Courts Section Connection:

"Recognizing that this is one of the most complex subjects for already overburdened family courts to address, courts rely on mental health professionals to assist in the process—and in the analysis as to whether a parent–child reconnection is even a viable possibility."

Social Work and the Courts Section Committee


  • Kathryn Dixon, MSW - Hackensack, NJ - Chair
  • Alexandra M. Coglianese, Esq., MSW, LSW - Hobeken, NJ
  • Cheryl M. Ely, LSW - Nixon, NV
  • George T. Patterson, ACSW - New York, NY
  • Aaron Robb, PhD - Frisco, TX

Alternate:

  • Sandra Kopels, JD, MSW, Urbana, IL