Online Register FAQs

Why does the College have an Online Register?

The Social Work and Social Service Work Act, 1998 (the “Act”) requires that the College maintain a Register of registrants and that the Register be available to the public. The Register contains information required under the Act and the College’s bylaws. This is one of the ways that the College fulfills its mandate of public protection. To have the Register accessible online is consistent with the practices of other regulatory bodies in Ontario and across Canada, and with the College’s goal of being innovative and transparent.

What information is available on the Online Register?

The Online Register includes the following information about social workers and social service workers in Ontario:

  • Name
  • Registration number
  • Previous name(s) (if known to the College)
  • Name used in practice (a shortened version or a nickname of the legal name – e.g. “Jenn” as a shortened version of “Jennifer” or “Maggie” as a nickname for “Margaret”)
  • Name of business or employer
  • Business address
  • Business phone number
  • Class of certificate of registration
  • Current status of registration
  • Practising status
  • Terms, conditions and limitations
  • Notations (e.g. suspension, cancellation or revocation of a member’s certificate of registration)
  • Other information in accordance with the College’s bylaws.

The Online Register also includes information about professional corporations.

Will the social worker or social service worker I’m seeing know that I looked at their information on the Online Register?

No. Although the College keeps track of the number of searches done, neither the College nor its registrants know the identity of the person conducting a search.

If there is a notation that a registrant’s certificate was suspended, does that mean it is for a disciplinary reason?

No, not necessarily. A certificate of registration may be suspended for administrative, disciplinary reasons or reasons of incapacity. The Registrar may suspend the certificate of registration of a College registrant for failure to pay a fee or penalty prescribed by the bylaws, failure to provide information required by the College’s bylaws or failure to comply with the College’s Continuing Competence Program. This is considered an administrative suspension. A registrant’s certificate of registration may also be suspended if the Discipline Committee, after a hearing, finds a registrant guilty of professional misconduct or to be incompetent. If this is the case, the finding and results of the hearing of the Discipline Committee will typically appear on the Online Register, in accordance with the Committee’s direction, as will the notation of the suspension. A registrant’s certificate of registration may also be suspended if the Fitness to Practise Committee, after a hearing, finds that the registrant is incapacitated. The suspension will be noted on the Online Register.

How often is the Online Register updated?

The Online Register is updated shortly after a change is made by a registrant through the College’s online registrant services. The Online Register is also updated when an update is made to a file in the database by a College staff member; for example, when an applicant is issued a certificate of registration or when a registrant’s registration status changes. The College endeavours to update the Register within a reasonable time period; however, there may be a delay when updating information.

My name has changed. How do I advise the College?

If you change your name, you must advise the College of both your former name(s) and your new name(s) in writing and include a copy of the change of name certificate or marriage certificate for our records. This must be done within 30 days of the effective date of the change.

The information should be sent to and include the following information: former name(s), new name(s) and a copy of an official government document that shows your new name(s) (e.g., a change of name certificate or marriage certificate). Please be aware that the name that is in the Online Register must be the name that you are using in the course of practising the profession. It is essential that you advise the College of a name change, as it is an act of professional misconduct to use a name in the course of practising the profession other than the name set out in the Register.

I resigned years ago. How long will this information remain on the Online Register?

When a registrant’s resignation is effective, a notation of cancellation will appear on the Online Register. The information will remain on the Register indefinitely.

My certificate of registration was administratively suspended. How do I reinstate my registration? How long will the suspension notation remain on the Online Register?

A registrant whose certificate has been suspended can reinstate their registration through the profile on the Online Portal and pay the fees and penalty prescribed by the bylaws of the College. The Register notation related to the suspension will remain on the Register indefinitely.