Social Service Law


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What Are Social Services?

Social Services are the public services provided by federal, state, and local governments. These services generally include things like healthcare, public housing programs, and welfare / social security.

The United States has provided various types of social services almost from its inception. Early social services usually involved pensions for sailors and soldiers. Later programs sought to provide for orphaned children, homeless, disabled, and other disadvantaged groups. Most programs were disconnected, however, and left large gaps in the coverage many required.

This changed in the early part of the 20th Century when a number of successive administrations began introducing more and more social programs. This ultimately culminated in the social programs that developed in the wake of the Great Depression and World War II. These included social security and welfare, numerous retirement and pensioning programs, insurance programs like medicare and medicaid, food stamps programs, public housing assistance, work placement programs, and many more.

For more information about social services please review the materials below. Additionally, you can find an attorney in your area to help you with your social services questions by visiting the Law Firms page of our site.

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Articles on HG.org Related to Social Services Law

  • Zoloft Lawsuit for Birth Defects Related to the Use of Sertraline
    Zoloft antidepressant drug should be carefully considered by pregnant woman, because of increased risks of birth defects.
  • The da Vinci Robot, More Harm than Good?
    The da Vinci surgical robot has been marketed as a breakthrough in making surgery more efficient and less invasive. The da Vinci robot has a sophisticated 3D view camera and four remote control arms, enabling surgeons to perform operations such as hysterectomies and prostatectomies through smaller incisions but with better visibility and precision. The da Vinci robot is currently used in about 1,000 hospitals and hundreds of medical offices across the United States.
  • Disability Benefits for Fibromyalgia: Why you Might Need it
    Living with Fibromyalgia is no walk in the park for anybody, but there is help for it if you know where to look. Getting disability benefits for Fibromyalgia is possible, but first you have to understand the disease. Talking to your doctor is a great place to get the answers you seek, but you can still do your own homework. When all is said and done, you ultimately need to know why you might need help with this sometimes debilitating ailment.
  • Is ASC Litigation on the Rise?
    In this article we will take a look at the current climate for free-standing, independently-owned physician surgery centers predominately in New Jersey, but affecting many areas of the country, and why it may be the harbinger for increased litigation to come. We’ll highlight a few of the recurring legal issues which tend to arise and take a look at some of the more common and fertile areas for litigation.
  • Prisoners and Social Security Disability Benefits
    Social Security disability benefits can be paid to people who have recently worked and paid Social Security taxes and are unable to work because of a serious medical condition that is expected to last at least a year or result in death. The fact that a person is a recent parolee or is unemployed does not qualify as a disability.
  • The Scent of Jasmine
    I rose to shake hands with my client and asked her to sit down. You see, at first I didn’t recognize her. It was only when I glanced down at her hand and saw the ring that I knew it was she. An old and now estranged friend had given it to her.
  • Rhode Island Medical Malpractice Lawyers: Case Digest Malpractice Insurance
    Medical malpractice and personal injury attorneys practicing in Rhode Island should be aware of a recent state Supreme Court decision that is helpful for our state’s consumers.
  • Healthcare Fraud Whistleblower Lawsuits Plentiful
    A large portion of the whistleblower lawsuits that are filed are related to the healthcare industry. The government funding of Medicare and Medicaid has lead to the large number of complaints related to healthcare fraud.
  • Social Security Disability - Expedited Handling of Compassionate Allowance Cases
    Where special circumstances exist, the handling of a Social Security disability case (SSDI or SSI) can be "speeded up" to provide the claimant with relief at an earlier date. The situations which the SSA recognizes as being in need of this special processing include Terminal Illness, Military Service, Compassionate Allowance and Dire Need cases.
  • Can I Get Disability For PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)?
    I often hear the same questions over and over again related to specific injuries or aliments and whether or not they qualify a person to receive Social Security Disability benefits. This article deals with the question "Can I Get Disability For PTSD?"
  • All Health Care and Social Law Articles

    Articles written by attorneys and experts worldwide discussing legal aspects related to Health Care and Social including: defective drugs, failure to diagnose, informed consent, medical law, medical malpractice, medication errors, pharmaceutical law, social security, social services law, surgical errors.

Department of Health and Social Services by State

Social Services Law - US

  • ABA - Commission on Homelessness and Poverty

    In 1991, the Commission on Homelessness and Poverty was established by the Board of Governors of the American Bar Association (ABA). The Commission is charged with the following tasks: (1) Educating members of the bar and the public about legal and other problems of poor and homeless people and ways in which lawyers can assist in solving or ameliorating them; (2) training lawyers in areas needed to provide pro bono legal assistance to homeless people and those at risk of becoming homeless; (3) working with all ABA entities on issues arising in their jurisdiction that affect poor and homeless people; and (4) engaging in such further activities as may be necessary and proper for the fulfillment of these responsibilities, including working with state and federal executive branches and legislative bodies concerning matters relating to the poor and homeless.

  • Affordable Care Act

    The Affordable Care Act passed by Congress and signed by President Obama this year will provide seniors and their families with greater savings and increased quality health care. It will also ensure accountability throughout the health care system so patients and their doctor—not insurance companies—have greater control over their own care.

  • Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)

    The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is the United States government's principal agency for protecting the health of all Americans and providing essential human services, especially for those who are least able to help themselves.

  • Office for Human Research Protections (OHRP) - Regulations

    OHRP's Division of Compliance Oversight (DCO) reviews institutional compliance with the federal regulations governing the protection of human subjects in HHS-sponsored research 45 CFR 46. DCO evaluates all written substantive allegations or indications of noncompliance with the HHS regulations. If complaints or concerns arise regarding an institution's human subject protection practices, OHRP opens a formal evaluation and, if necessary, requires corrective action by the institution.

  • Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996

    On August 22, 1996, President Clinton signed into law the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996, Public Law 104-193, better known as the Welfare Reform Bill. This law changes how governmental financial assistance is administered including: changing federal funding to states from an open-ended entitlement to a series of capped block grant allocations; sets time limits on entitlements and cash assistance to welfare recipients; requires most welfare recipients to engage in job activities (this includes work experience, community service, job training, vocational education); changes the disability definitions for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) for children who apply; mandates states to establish methods to enforce collection of unpaid parental child support; denies many legal immigrants from collecting SSI and food stamps; consolidates all child care programs into the Child Care and Development Block Grant, and changes food stamp recertification requirements.

  • Welfare Law - Overview

    In the United States, welfare benefits for individuals and families with no or low income had been almost non-existent prior to the Great Depression of the 1930s. With millions of people unemployed, the federal government saw income security as a national problem. In addition to establishing two major "social insurance" programs to respond to future income loss (Social Security and Unemployment compensation), the Social Security Act of 1935 launched federal grants to support state welfare programs for low-income elderly and families with children.

Social Services Law - International

  • British Association of Social Workers (BASW)

    The British Association of Social Workers (BASW) is the largest association representing social work and social workers in the UK. Whether you are qualified or not, experienced, or just entering the profession, we are here to help, support, advise and campaign on your behalf.

  • Canadian Association of Social Workers

    On a national level, CASW has adopted a pro-active approach to issues pertinent to social policy/social work. It produces and distributes timely information for its members, and special projects are initiated and sponsored. CASW representatives serve on coalitions and participate on a host of affiliated, nationwide committees on a continuing basis. As well, they provide consultation with government, other professional and non-governmental groups and, of course, the general public.

  • Division for Social Policy and Development - United Nations

    The Division for Social Policy and Development provides substantive support to Governments in developing policy measures and initiatives to promote inclusive "societies for all", where each individual has rights and responsibilities regardless of economic status (poverty), social status (gender, marital), specific age group (older persons, youth), disability or cultural or religious affiliation. The aim is to ensure that individuals and communities are enabled to participate in society and contribute to national development while enjoying basic human rights and fundamental freedoms.

  • International Federation of Social Workers (IFSW)

    The International Federation of Social Workers (IFSW) is a global organisation striving for social justice, human rights and social development through the development of social work, best practices and international cooperation between social workers and their professional organisations.

  • International Social Service (ISS)

    The International Social Service (ISS) helps individuals, children and families confronted with social problems involving two, or more, countries as a consequence of international migration or displacement. As an international not-for-profit organisation, it is active in around 140 countries through a network of national branches, affiliated bureaus and correspondents (link toward illustrative map). Each year, it provides services to more than 50’000 persons throughout the world each year.

Organizations Related to Social Services Law

  • Administration for Children and Families (ACF)

    The Administration for Children and Families (ACF), within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is responsible for federal programs that promote the economic and social well-being of families, children, individuals, and communities. ACF programs aim to achieve the following: * families and individuals empowered to increase their own economic independence and productivity; * strong, healthy, supportive communities that have a positive impact on the quality of life and the development of children; * partnerships with individuals, front-line service providers, communities, American Indian tribes, Native communities, states, and Congress that enable solutions which transcend traditional agency boundaries; * services planned, reformed, and integrated to improve needed access; * and a strong commitment to working with people with developmental disabilities, refugees, and migrants to address their needs, strengths, and abilities.

  • International Social Services, USA (ISS-USA)

    The mission of ISS is to improve the lives of children, families and adults impacted by migration and international crisis through advances in service, knowledge and public policy.

  • National Association of Social Workers

    The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) is the largest membership organization of professional social workers in the world, with 150,000 members. NASW works to enhance the professional growth and development of its members, to create and maintain professional standards, and to advance sound social policies.

  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)

    The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has established a clear vision for its work -- a life in the community for everyone. To realize this vision, the Agency has sharply focused its mission on building resilience and facilitating recovery for people with or at risk for mental or substance use disorders. SAMHSA is gearing all of its resources -- programs, policies and grants -- toward that outcome.

  • UN - Basic Social Services for All (BSSA)

    The Wall Chart on Basic Social Services for All (BSSA) was produced under the auspices of the ACC Task Force on Basic Social Services for All (TFBSSA) as one of the follow-up activities of the recent United Nations global conferences and summits, particularly: the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) (Cairo, 1994), the World Summit for Social Development (WSSD) (Copenhagen, 1995), the Fourth World Conference on Women (FWCW) (Beijing, 1995) and the Second World Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat II) (Istanbul, 1996).

  • Volunteers of America

    At Volunteers of America, we are more than a nonprofit organization. We are a ministry of service that includes nearly 16,000 paid, professional employees dedicated to helping those in need rebuild their lives and reach their full potential. Through our thousands of human service programs, including housing and healthcare, Volunteers of America helps more than 2 million people in over 400 communities in 44 states. Since 1896, we have supported and empowered America's most vulnerable groups, including at-risk youth, the frail elderly, men and women returning from prison, homeless individuals and families, people with disabilities, and those recovering from addictions. Our work touches the mind, body, heart — and ultimately the spirit — of those we serve, integrating our deep compassion with highly effective programs and services.

Publications Related to Social Services Law

  • Social Work Blog

    Welcome to NASW's Social Work Blog. On this site, you'll find a variety of topics and information related to the social work profession... and most importantly, users will be able to add comments from time to time related to those different issues. Any and all feedback is welcome, whether you're social worker, social work student, social work supporter, or your life has just been affected by social work.

  • The New Social Worker Magazine

    The magazine's primary focus is on career development for social workers and social work students at all levels. Each issue includes: * student role model profiles * book reviews * news of the profession * resources for social workers * features on practice specialties * articles on ethics * features on field placement issues and much, much more!


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