Social Work Careers, Licensures, and Salaries in New York

New York is one of the top states in the country in terms of social work employment. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the largest employment is for the sectors of child, family, and school with over 29,000 workers. In general, there are over 56,000 workers recognized when factoring in health care, mental health, and substance abuse social workers.

Average Salary of a New York Social Worker

Only California has more employment in social work than New York. Salaries are fairly even across the board for state with social work positions between $60,000 to $63,000 as the annual mean estimate. This is generally above the national average, though New York City sees a slight salary boost for professionals in mental health work.

New York Social Work Licensure Requirements

There are two levels of certification that New York residents can achieve with a Master’s degree in social work. Becoming a Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW) requires the completion of a CSWE-accredited program that had over 900 hours of field education. A required child abuse course is also needed prior to submitting an application, which can be taken at many locations across the state.

Clinical Examination Requirements

With the LMSW license in hand and three years of postgraduate clinical experience, individuals can then apply to become a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW). At least 2,000 of these hours require direct client services. When attempting to gain either licensure, applicants must first complete and pass the corresponding exam through the Association of Social Work Boards.

Licensures from other states at the LCSW level are accepted if there have been at least 10 years of practice over the last 15 years. This is different for the LMSW, which does not accept licensure from other states unless similar requirements have been completed. Renewals take place every three years with 36 continuing education credit hours required.