APC Renewal

As a Registered Social Worker you must have a current Annual Practising Certificate to work as a social worker. The SWRB’s practising year runs from 1 July through to 30 June of each year. Your Annual Practising Certificate therefore expires on 30 June of each year. It is your responsibility to renew your practising certificate. Make sure you give yourself enough time to update any details and pay the renewal fee.

All Registered Social Workers engaged in social work decision-making at any level must have an Annual Practising Certificate. Click on the Do I need an APC? button on the right to find out if you need one.

You can renew your Annual Practising Certificate online below
Go to your account
This process will allow you to pay using your credit card or internet banking, or you can request an invoice for you or your employer. Before requesting an invoice for your employer you should confirm that your employer has agreed to pay your APC fee.

Points to Note if you wish to renew your Annual Practising Certificate (APC):

  • Renewal of your APC is dependent upon you holding a valid competence certificate including having successfully completed relevant CPD (Continuing Professional Development) activities. (Further information on the competence Recertification Programme is available on our website)
  • If there are conditions on your current APC then you must fulfil or comply with the conditions included on your new APC.
  • If your APC application is received after 1 July 2017 it will still have an expiry date of either 30 June 2018 or the date at which your competence certificate expires. APCs cannot be dated beyond 30 June 2018.
  • There are no pro rata payments for APCs. Part time social workers do not qualify for a reduction in fees.
  • You will not be issued an APC if you have any outstanding fines, costs or expenses with the Social Workers Disciplinary Tribunal or the Social Workers Registration Board.

What you’ll need

  • Your registration number
  • Your email address that we sent the renewal information to
  • Your credit card (if this is how you want to pay)
  • Your internet banking login and password (if this is how you want to pay)

Email us at apc@swrb.govt.nz if you did not receive the information we sent you in May on how to renew online.

When you log in for the first time, you will activate your account and enter a password. We will send an email telling you how to do this after you have click on the Renew now button and started the process.

If you don’t get your Annual Practising Certificate and APC ID card within two weeks of completing this online form, please call us on 0508 797 269 or email us at apc@swrb.govt.nz.

What does my APC fee pay for?

The APC is an annual fee that is a significant contributor to running the costs of the Board. As the regulatory authority we work to ensure that registered social workers are competent and fit to practise. Our primary purpose is to protect the safety of the public by making sure social workers are ‘professional’. This means that we:

  • Ensure social workers that come on the register have all the necessary qualifications and are fit to practise social work
  • Investigate the practice of social workers where there have been complaints about their competence, where they have been convicted of criminal offences and those whose fitness to practise is in question

Occasionally, the outcome of these processes mean that social workers are charged through the Social Workers Complaints and Disciplinary Tribunal. The APC covers those costs as well – including the costs of any investigations and disciplinary hearings (as the Tribunal is separate to the Board).

Fundamentally this means that the APC fees help to regulate and maintain the social work profession’s reputation, so you are not tarnished as belonging to an incompetent or unprofessional group.

The SWRB have maintained the price of the APC, since it increased from $360.00 to $368.00 in 2010. The SWRB fee for an APC is also comparable to other regulatory authorities in New Zealand, often coming in at the lower end of the scale.

The SWRB does not receive any government funding so your APC is a main source of income of running the SWRB (along with other fees, such as the application fee). This includes staffing, holding Board meetings, running the website, submissions and consultations, policy development and the other aspects of running an organisation such as computer systems and office space. We work hard to ensure good value for money in what we do, and you can read about our finances in our annual report here.