Care Quality Commission

Care quality commission
Legally reviewed by: Laura Smith

If you are facing Care Quality Commission (CQC) enforcement action, Cartwright King’s specialist CQC Solicitors can defend you against any civil or criminal enforcement actions brought against you by the CQC. We specialise in  assisting registered care providers, managers and directors.

We are here to guide you through the CQC regulatory process, assisting you with everything from registration to appeals.

For immediate action, get in touch with our Regulatory Law Team now.

How Cartwright King can help you

Cartwright King’s specialist Care Quality Commission Enforcement Action Solicitors provide fast, effective legal advice at every stage of your case. Timescales to respond to enforcement action brought against you are tight, which is why we take a collaborative approach with the CQC to secure the best outcome for you. 

We can help with:

  • Challenging a registration refusal 
  • Challenging a proposal to cancel registration
  • Challenging a Warning Notice
  • Conditions of registration
  • Challenging an inspection report
  • Lodging a complaint about the inspection process

Benefit from a free, initial telephone conversation

If you are facing CQC enforcement action, you need the right legal advice, fast.

That’s why Cartwright King offers a free, initial telephone call with a specialist Regulatory Solicitor, which gives you the opportunity to explain your situation and find out how we can best support you.

There’s no substitute for speaking to one of our specialist solicitors to get the right advice, and ensuring that you’re well prepared when facing CQC enforcement action. 

For immediate action, call us or email us for your free* initial discussion. 

The discussion is completely informal and confidential, and is an opportunity for us to:

  • Get to know you 
  • Understand your situation
  • Agree how you want to proceed

*Please be aware that this is a ‘get to know you’ call and no legal advice will be given.

Why Choose Cartwright King for Defence Against CQC Enforcement Action?

You want your case to be in the hands of experienced, responsive and trustworthy solicitors when facing CQC enforcement action. We understand the demands and pressures that come with working in the care sector – especially amid the coronavirus pandemic. 

We have dealt with many cases involving the CQC, which means that we are well positioned to defend you against enforcement action or an unfavourable inspection report.

As a nationally renowned law firm with a reputation for defending against civil and criminal investigations, we’re well placed to properly present your case and represent you. 

We listen, we understand and we genuinely care about your interests and protecting your personal and commercial reputation. That’s why we offer sound, reliable legal advice to ensure that you understand your rights when facing enforcement action. 

Cartwright King can defend you against a wide range of issues, giving you peace of mind that your case is in good hands.

Working with a specialist Cartwright King solicitor gives you the assurance of having access to legal counsel who will advise you at every stage of your case. We will do everything we can to clear you of wrongdoing or minimise any action against you.

We’re committed to defending your legal rights and your reputation, ensuring that you’re treated fairly throughout your case. When you need us most, we’ll be there to offer sound, sensible legal advice and sure guidance.  

We’re a trusted, resourceful Legal 500 top tier law firm with specialist solicitors that are calm under pressure, giving you defence counsel that you can count on.

We're here for you.

Frequently asked questions.

How do I challenge a registration refusal or proposal to cancel registration?

If you are an individual or organisation that provides a ‘regulated activity’, you must register with the Care Quality Commission. Failing to register with the CQC while providing a regulated activity is considered a criminal offence under the Health and Social Care Act 2008 – section 10.

Following a registration application made to the CQC, it will consider whether you or your organisation is fit to provide services and adhere to regulations. If the CQC deems that you or your organisation do not meet requirements, a registration application could be refused.

If the CQC carries out an inspection and deems that a service provider is no longer fit to provide services, it could issue a Notice of Proposal to Cancel Registration, the effect of which would result in the service being closed.

Cartwright King can help you challenge the decision in either of these scenarios, providing fast-acting legal solutions in what is a time-sensitive situation. We work alongside you offering the vital legal advice and assistance you need to quickly bring the matter to appeal if necessary.

How do I challenge a Warning Notice?

If the CQC deems that you or your organisation have violated regulations, such as care falling below expected standards or failure to adhere to a registration condition, the CQC could issue a Warning Notice in accordance with section 29 of the Health and Social Care Act.

The CQC does not routinely disclose full details of any Warning Notice, but any information that is published can negatively affect you or your organisation.

To challenge a Warning Notice, you have 10 working days to make representations. Cartwright King’s Regulatory Law Team will act fast to prepare written representations and guide you through the process of challenging a Warning Notice.

How do I deal with conditions of registration?

Under some circumstances – including issues relating to the delivery of regulated activity – the CQC has the power to impose conditions on your registration. These conditions can have a detrimental impact on your business – commercially and reputationally.

Cartwright King can help you respond quickly and carefully to challenge conditions imposed on your registration. You have 28 days to make representations should the CQC issue a Notice of Proposal.

Our specialist Regulatory Solicitors will work with you to prepare representations and liaise with the CQC, taking a collaborative approach – provided that it’s in your interests – and bring the matter to an appeal if required.

How do I challenge an inspection report?

If you are faced with a CQC inspection, you can expect staff members to be interviewed and your provision of care to be closely watched.

Once the inspection has been completed, the Care Quality Commission will issue a draft report, which will contain a detailed account of the service provided and give a rating for:

  • Safety 
  • Effectiveness
  • Care provided
  • Responsiveness 
  • Leadership

An overall rating is determined based on the individual rating of each of these criteria.

Before a final report is published, you have the opportunity to challenge any inaccuracies or completeness of the information contained in the draft report. You can challenge anything from typographical and numerical errors to factual inconsistencies.

To challenge an inspection report, you must provide clear documentary evidence to support any discrepancies you have found. You have 10 working days to review the draft report for factual accuracy and submit your comments to the CQC.

After a final report is published, you can request a rating review, but you can only do this on the grounds of the inspector not following the process for making a ratings decision. You cannot request a review simply because you disagree with the CQC’s decision.

Cartwright King can help by preparing the Factual Accuracy Comments form that you will need to submit, along with documentary evidence, to highlight any inaccuracies.

Our specialist Regulatory Lawyers are very experienced in dealing with cases where the CQC has failed to follow correct procedures when making a ratings decision. We act fast to ensure that you get the right advice as early as possible.

In some cases, we can advise you on the potential merits of challenging a rating by judicial review.

How do I file a complaint about the inspection process?

Filing a complaint about the inspection process is separate to a challenge made concerning the factual accuracy of an inspection report. A complaint can be made, and will be considered by the CQC’s National Complaints Team, based on:

  • The alleged unprofessional conduct of CQC staff 
  • Administrative errors
  • Failure to follow correct processes 

Cartwright King will help you draft and file your complaint with CQC, and we will liaise with them regarding the complaint and provide the necessary supporting evidence as part of the CQC’s investigation into the complaint.

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