GOC—Fitness to Practise hearing
Produced in partnership with Jonas Milne & Sandesh Singh of 2 Bedford Row
GOC—Fitness to Practise hearing

The following Corporate Crime guidance note Produced in partnership with Jonas Milne & Sandesh Singh of 2 Bedford Row provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • GOC—Fitness to Practise hearing
  • The GOC Fitness to Practise Committee
  • Notice of hearing
  • Standard procedural directions
  • Procedural or case management hearings at the GOC
  • Service of evidence
  • Substantive hearing at the GOC
  • Presenting officer's case
  • Application for no case to answer
  • Registrant's case
  • more

The GOC Fitness to Practise Committee

The Fitness to Practise Committee will be comprised of medical and non-medical people appointed by the General Optical Council (GOC) to enquire into allegations of impaired fitness to practise. The panellists, who are not members of the GOC, usually consist of five members in addition to the chair, who may be medical or non-medical. However, there must be at least one medical and one non-medical panellist on each panel.

The Fitness to Practise Committee panel will sit with a legal adviser, who must be a trained solicitor or barrister. He will advise the committee on all matters of law, including procedural matters. He will often be involved in the drafting of the panel's reasons for its decision, but he will not be involved in the decision-making.

The Fitness to Practise Committee panel may also appoint a clinical adviser where the registrant's physical or mental health is an issue, and/or a special adviser who may be present at the proceedings, and advise the committee on any matter within their professional competence.

Also attending the Fitness to Practise hearing will be the presenting officer of the GOC, who will advance the evidence which has been gathered about the complaint or allegation, and the registrant and his representative and a transcriber who will take notes of the hearing so