Responding to an allegation
How you can respond to a fitness to practise allegation
Sending us a written response
We will write to you explaining the allegations made against you. We will invite you to send a written response to the allegations within 28 days of the date of our letter.
Whether or not you provide a written response at this stage, you are required to complete a form and give information including details of your employer. You must also tell us if you change your address. Failure to provide any of this information could result in action being taken against you.
Informing your employer
The Code requires that a nurse or midwife must tell any employer they work for at the first reasonable opportunity if they have been disciplined by any regulatory or licensing organisation. It is likely that individual contracts of employment require a nurse or midwife to promptly tell their employer of any issues that call into question their fitness to practise.
We may investigate if you do not comply with the Code by failing to inform your employer in such circumstances.
Engaging with us during the investigation process
Being the subject of a referral can be a stressful experience. Working with us early on will help the process to run more smoothly. Seeking advice and responding to us about the referral at an early stage can help to bring the case to a conclusion more quickly. Taking part in the process is likely to help reduce the stress of the situation and can also result in a better outcome for all involved.
Responding to the referral and, for example, providing reflection on the events that have given rise to the concerns, or demonstrating learning and remediation, can often have positive results. For example, these actions could lead to the case being closed at an earlier point or, if a case continues to the later adjudication stages, a lesser sanction being imposed.
If the nurse or midwife’s response is received at an earlier stage, it may reduce the level of investigation required and the time that the process takes. For example, obtaining witness statements may not be necessary and seeking information from the employer may be sufficient.
Similarly, cases can sometimes progress to the hearing stage without any engagement from the nurse or midwife. If the nurse or midwife had engaged with us earlier, our legal team may have recommended a lesser sanction.