Appeals against panel decisions

Reference: APP-1

Last Updated 10/01/2020

A nurse or midwife can appeal against the outcome of a final hearing to the court.

In the case of a final substantive order, the nurse or midwife can appeal to:1

  • The High Court in England and Wales
  • The High Court Justice in Northern Ireland
  • Court of Session in Scotland.

In the case of an order to amend the register where an entry has been fraudulently procured or incorrectly made, a nurse or midwife can appeal to the county court.2

If the nurse of midwife wants to appeal against a final committee decision (or a decision on review), they have to do so within 28 days, unless the court decides that there are exceptional circumstances to justify extending the time period.3 This 28 day period starts from the day after the date on the letter informing the nurse or midwife of the outcome of the hearing. If the last of the 28 days falls on a day when the court office is closed, such as a weekend or bank holiday, then we consider that the next working day will be the last day of the appeal period.

Appeals by the Professional Standards Authority (PSA)

The Professional Standards Authority (PSA) routinely reviews all our fitness to practise decisions along with those of other health and social care regulators. It has the power to appeal against a final decision by one of our practice committees if it considers it is not sufficient for the protection of the public.4

The PSA may only do this during a 40 day period, which begins on the last day of the nurse or midwife’s appeal period.5 In situations where the nurse or midwife does not have a right to appeal, the PSA has 56 days, beginning on the day after the date on the letter informing the nurse or midwife of the outcome of the hearing.6

1 Articles 29(10), 38(1)(a) and (4) of the Nursing and Midwifery Order 2001 (‘the Order’)
2 Articles 26(13) and 38(1)(b) of the Order
3 R (on the application of) Adesina & Ors v The Nursing  Midwifery Council [2013] EWCA Civ 818
4 s29(4) National Health Service Reform and Health Care Professions Act 2002
5 s29(6)(a) National Health Service Reform and Health Care Professions Act 2002
6 s29(6)(b) National Health Service Reform and Health Care Professions Act 2002

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