How to Properly File a Request for Professional Review (RPR)

1. Download and review the Procedures for Professional Review

Visit the Office of Ethics & Professional Review (OEPR) homepage.

From there, please review and download the following, located in the list of links on the left hand side of the page.
NASW Procedures for Professional Review Revised, Sixth Edition (PDF file).



Available in English and Spanish

2. Request Technical Assistance

The Office of Ethics and Professional Review (OEPR) can provide guidance and technical assistance throughout the professional review process. However, the OEPR cannot advocate on the Complainant’s or Respondent’s behalf. Technical assistance is not required in order to file a complaint. There are no fees associated with the use of this assistance.

3. Complete the Request for Professional Review Form (RPR)-Ethics Form

ProceduresManual.pdf ProceduresManual.pdf

The RPR form is located on page fifty-three (53) of the Procedures. Complete the form in its entirety.

Please note at the top of the form that a 3-page maximum Statement of Issue is to accompany the RPR.

That statement must cite the specific standards of the NASW’s Code of Ethics that were allegedly violated.

It must include a list of and a detailed description of materials to be used that will support the allegations. It must include a list of intended sources of evidence, and (if applicable) it must include the status of any legal action underway related to the matter.

Unless specified in the Procedures, please do not submit any additional documentation.

For guidance, please refer to Chapter 1 of the Procedures; “Who May File an RPR,” and “How to File an RPR,” and Chapter 4 of the Procedures; “Criteria for Acceptance”.

Complete the NASW Professional Review – Confidentiality Pledge/Statement of Understanding form located on pages fifty-seven (57) and fifty-eight (58) of the Procedures, in its entirety. This form is a requirement for an RPR to be considered.

Once all the necessary forms are complete, please submit your RPR packet to the following address:

National Association of Social Workers (NASW)
Office of Ethics and Professional Review
750 First Street, NE Suite 800
Washington, D.C. 20002-4241
Attn: NEC Intake Subcommittee

The named Respondent will have 14 days to respond to the RPR.  Please note whether the Respondent chooses to respond to the RPR or not, the professional review process will proceed.

ProceduresManual.pdf ProceduresManual.pdf

4. The Intake Subcommittee of the National Ethics Committee (NEC) will review the RPR in order to determine if the criteria for acceptance have been met.

5. If the RPR is accepted for review, The NEC Intake Subcommittee will determine whether the matter will be referred to mediation or adjudication.

Mediation: a collaborative problem-solving process in which a neutral third party guides a discussion intended to aid the parties in the dispute define the issues, obtain relevant information, and generate reasonable options for resolution. Mediation is a conflict resolution process that is valued both as an element of social work practice and as a way to resolve grievances related to violations of ethics. Because mediation is a conflict resolution process in which the participants themselves decide on the outcome, NASW does not determine whether specific violations of the NASW Code of Ethics have or have not occurred

Adjudication: : the process of determining whether a professional action is in violation of the NASW Code of Ethics. When a RPR is referred for adjudication, a hearing is held to determine if the social worker’s action was indeed a violation of the Code. A report of the Hearing Panel’s conclusions is issued, and any appropriate recommendations are made.

6. Additional questions about the professional review process can be directed to the OEPR at 202.336.8221.
National Association of Social Workers, 750 First Street, NE • Suite 800, Washington, DC 20002
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