If you’re facing a disciplinary hearing, you need a lawyer for social service workers.
At Unified LLP we specialize in representing social workers and social service workers in a variety of legal settings. One of the most urgent and important forums is the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers. We specialize in representation at professional colleges having handled over a hundred individual cases.
We know that social workers and social service workers are subject to strict regulation, stressful work environments and intense scrutiny from students, parents and administrators. We know how stressful a complaint at the College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers can be. We are here to help guide you through the College process, providing fearless and effective advocacy on your behalf.
On the remainder of this page is more information about the College’s process. However, most issues at the Social Workers and Social Service Workers Educators are extremely time sensitive. If you’re facing allegations from the Social Workers and Social Service Workers (OCSWSSW) reach out to us today to set up a consultation about your case. We’ll manage the complaint and discipline process from the day you receive notice to a hearing before the Disciplinary Committee, if required.
College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers Complaints and Investigations
Social workers and social service workers are a self-regulating profession, that means that their conduct is regulated by the College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers. Members of the public and employers can make complaints to the College. These complaints are then reviewed by the Investigation Committee of the College and can be referred to the Discipline or Fitness to Practise Committee
What What Do I Do if I Receive a Complaint Letter, Notice of Hearing, or Notice of Investigation from the College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers?
We believe it is essential that social workers and social service workers are represented at the College. The College’s process is run by highly experienced investigators and prosecutors. You are entitled to defense counsel throughout the College’s process who can prioritize obtaining the best outcome in your case. We provide expert and effective representation at the College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers.
What Is a Complaint Letter?
A complaint letter is the first notification that the subject of a complaint receives. It may be prefaced by a phone call from College staff confirming your contact information.
The complaint letter also sets out the College’s Complaints Committee process and how you can participate in that process. It might offer you the opportunity to take part in a dispute or complaint resolution program. It will offer you the opportunity to submit written materials to the College.
The Complaints Committee is essential for you to present your case. For many Members it is the only opportunity to have a matter resolved without publication. If your case concerns medical issues it is also essential that those are presented effectively at this stage.
We have substantial experience with preparing responses to the Complaints Committee. We regularly have cases dismissed at this stage. We can ensure that your response is provided in a favourable and effective manner within the deadlines set by the College. We can also ensure that all relevant material is put before the Complaints Committee including witness statements, medical evidence and raise any relevant legal issues.
What Does a Notice of Hearing at the Discipline Committee Mean?
A notice of hearing indicates that your matter has been referred to the Discipline Committee for professional misconduct, incompetence, or another relevant allegation. It means that the College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers is going to hold a public trial of the allegations against you. The Discipline Committee’s outcome is always public and will be published on your College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers profile regardless of your status with the College. The Committee can also order:
- Public reprimands;
- Coursework at the Member’s expense;
- Suspensions of the Member’s license for up to 24 months;
- Revoke a Member’s certificate; and
- The costs of the College’s trial up to $10,000 per day of hearing.
Regardless of the outcome of a hearing a summary is published. If you receive a Notice of Hearing please reach out to us immediately to schedule a consultation. Allegations of professional misconduct can impede your ability to practise – Unified LLP is here to serve as your social worker lawyer and guide you every step of the way.
Contact a Leading Lawyer for Social Service Workers
Our team has years of experience service as a social worker defence lawyer, helping clients through the complaint process, representing clients before the divisional court, the Fitness to Practice Committee, and during alternative dispute resolution. Our knowledge extends to all relevant aspects of the law, including in-depth knowledge of the Social Work and Social Service Work Act.
If you are a registered social worker facing an investigation by the Disciplinary Committee, don’t hesitate to reach out to us – we’re here to help you protect your rights and your career.