HCPC Investigation process
Produced in partnership with Paul Renteurs of 2 Hare Court
HCPC Investigation process

The following Corporate Crime guidance note Produced in partnership with Paul Renteurs of 2 Hare Court provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • HCPC Investigation process
  • Referral
  • Investigating Committee
  • Case to answer
  • Impaired fitness to practise
  • No case to answer

FORTHCOMING CHANGE: The Health and Care Professionals Council (HCPC) is responsible for the regulation of health care professionals in England and Wales. The regulation of social workers in England transferred from the HCPC to Social Work England on 2 December 2019. For more information on Social Work England, see News Analysis: Regulating social workers—England’s new regime.


Referrals to the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) can come from any source, but usually comes from individual patients or service users or their families, and from employers or former employers of the registrant. The HCPC has powers under Health Professions Order 2001 (HPO 2001), SI 2002/254, art 22(6) to investigate a matter even if a complaint has not been raised in the usual way and these powers may be used in cases of self referral and also where information has come from other sources, such as media reports.

No particular form is required for a complaint to be made but the HCPC has provided guidance setting out the Threshold Policy for Fitness to Practise Investigations that allegations must normally meet in order to proceed. This replaced the HCPC’s Standard of Acceptance from 14 January 2019. The Threshold Policy requires that a complaint should:

  1. be in writing

  2. sufficiently identify the registrant against whom the complaint is made, and

  3. set out the nature