Clinical Substance Abuse Counselor

Pursuant to 2017 Wisconsin Act 278, beginning August 1, 2018, prior to submitting an application for a credential, an individual may apply to the Department for a determination of whether the individual would be disqualified from obtaining the credential due to his or her conviction record.  To apply for a predetermination, please fill out Form #3085 and submit all required documentation specified on the form.  Pursuant to Wis. Stat. § 111.335(4)(e), the offenses or kinds of offenses that may result in a refusal, bar, or termination of licensure are published under Additional Resources on the left side of this page.


License Information

Fee Reduction

Pursuant to 2017 Wisconsin Act 319, beginning August 1, 2018, an applicant for an initial credential may apply for a reduction of the initial credential fee that is equal to 10% of the initial fee.  Qualification is based on the federal adjusted gross income being at or below 180% of the federal poverty guideline prescribed for the applicant's family household size by the United States Department of Health and Human Services. To determine eligibility please visit the United States Department of Health and Human Services website at https://aspe.hhs.gov/poverty-guidelines, prior to submitting Form 3217.

Per Wisconsin State Statutes 440.08 (2), the required renewal date for the Clinical Substance Abuse Counselor credential is 02/28/odd years.  Should you receive your initial credential in the months leading up to this date, you are still required to renew your license by the statutorily defined date.

Pursuant to 2017 Wisconsin Act 262, as of May 1, 2018, the requirements to obtain a Clinical Substance Abuse Counselor credential have changed.

Requirements

  • Complete education requirements (see below).
  • Complete and submit Application for Clinical Substance Abuse Counselor including all required documentation and pay required fee.
  • DSPS reviews application and makes applicant eligible for the National Association for Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors (NAADAC) Examination.  Examinations may be taken after completion of education, before experience is completed.
  • Successful completion of required examinations. 
  • Completion of 5,000 hours of work experience performing the 8 practice dimensions as a Substance Abuse Counselor, supervised as described in (Form #2749), within 5 years immediately preceding the date of application.  The 5,000 hours may include any work experience hours obtained as a requirement of the substance abuse counselor credential.

Pre-Credential Education Information

  • Must have graduated from an accredited university or college with an associate's degree or higher in a field of behavioral science (see SPS 160.02(3)).
  • Complete 360 hours of Department approved specialized education in substance use disorder counseling within a department approved program.
  • Current Pre-Certification Education - Current list of Approved Pre-Certification Courses. Additional programs will be added as programs apply and are approved.
  • Former Pre-Certification Education - Formerly-Approved Pre-Certification Programs.

Educators: To apply for approval of a 360-hour comprehensive program, see application procedure:

  • Form 2848 - Application Instructions
  • Form 2784 - Course Application Information
  • The training shall be in a comprehensive program or degree program approved by the Department, except for those having an accumulation of 100 or more hours as of March 1, 2007.  An applicant who previously held a certificate from the Wisconsin Certification Board and can provide documentation of accumulation of 100 or more hours of approved specialized education as of March 1, 2007, may submit proof of completion of the balance of the 360 hours from sources other than a comprehensive program.

Application for Licensure

FormDescription
2743Application for Clinical Substance Abuse Counselor
2786​Application for Out of State Reciprocity
3217
​Application for Fee Reduction (This form must accompany the application for the credential)
2749​Affidavit Regarding Supervised Experience
3079

Certificate of Completion of Dept. Approved Substance Abuse Education Program (360 Hour Program) For applicants who have completed a Department approved 360 hour program
2829

Malpractice Suits or Claims Form (If applicable)
​3085​Application for Predetermination
2252

​Convictions and Pending Charges
3071

​Fax Payment Form

Renewal Information

Requirements

  • FEE (See Renewal Dates and Fees)
  • SIG (Signature regarding the completion of Continuing Education in Chapter SPS 165.01, included in online renewal and paper form - see Continuing Education Information for details)
  • If your legal status as a qualified alien or nonimmigrant lawfully present in the United States has changed since the issuance of your credential or your last renewal, please contact the Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services at (608) 266-2112 or dsps@wisconsin.gov.

Renewal Methods

  • Online Log In: License Renewal Online
  • Request a Paper Renewal Form: (888) 506‑4239 or (608) 261‑4460 for the Madison area
FormDescription
RDAFRenewal Dates and Fees
R210Active Duty/Discharge Renewal Extension

Wisconsin Act 210 (effective June 1, 2012)

This Act extends the license of a service member if the license expires while they are on active duty from 90 days to 180 days from the date of discharge. The same applies to a spouse of a service member if the spouse does not practice under their license while the service member is on active duty and does not practice because the service member is on active duty.

This Act repeals a provision of prior law that required a service member to meet all of the requirements for license extension or renewal, except for continuing education requirements, in order to have the license extended.

Service members and spouses may request extensions of licenses beyond 180 days from discharge and may request a waiver or extension of time to complete continuing education requirements due to hardship. Please view Active Duty/Discharge Renewal Extension Form #R210.