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Chambliss Team Authors "Ethics Among Social Workers and Attorneys: The Value of a Referral Relationship"

Published by Social Work Today
01.25.2016

Chambliss shareholder Dana Perry, along with Licensed Advance Practice Social Worker (LAP MSW) Amy Boulware and care coordinator Sally Brewer, authored "Ethics Among Social Workers and Attorneys: The Value of a Referral Relationship," published by Social Work Today. Amy serves Chambliss clients as the elder care planning manager at Chambliss, and Sally serves as the elder care benefits manager. In this article, Dana, Amy, and Sally collaborate to illustrate the value of a two-way referral system between attorneys and social workers that best benefits their shared client. Read the entire article here.

Introduction

The often-blurred lines between social work and law present an age-old ethical challenge for those in the social work field. Sharing common interests and objectives—such as improving quality of life for clients, combatting social injustice, and promoting social well-being—social workers and attorneys are often faced with needs and issues that intersect and go beyond their respective scope of services. The challenge lies in how to handle these overlaps when they happen—particularly when a mishandling of these crossovers may mean a breach of ethics. With an understandable desire to go above and beyond the call of duty, social workers may feel obligated and tempted at times to provide advice to clients in areas beyond their scope of knowledge and expertise—namely, legal advice. It is in these cases that the presence of a strong, two-way referral system is as vital to clients' well-being as it is to the integrity of the two professions.