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Ofsted enforcement action

Ofsted has a wide range of civil and criminal enforcement powers and Ofsted can utilise these powers against registered providers and managers in early years, childcare, education, and social care sectors. They also have the power to take enforcement action against individuals or companies who are providing regulated activities without registration.

What are Ofsted’s enforcement powers?

In broad terms, Ofsted can take the following action against a provider:

  • Raise a requirement following or at an inspection / monitoring visit
  • Make a recommendation at an inspection / monitoring visit
  • Issue welfare requirement notices
  • Issue compliance notices
  • Suspend registration
  • Restrict accommodation
  • Cancel registration
  • Impose or vary conditions of registration
  • Refuse a new registration application
  • Refuse a request to vary or remove conditions of registration
  • Undertake regulatory meetings
  • Undertake interviews under caution
  • Issue warning letters and cautions
  • Prosecute providers, directors, and managers

The type of action taken by Ofsted will be determined by the nature of the concerns that Ofsted have and the type of provider that they are regulating.


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What does this mean for providers?

It is vital that all providers, including early years, childcare, education and social care providers, act quickly once they receive any enforcement action from Ofsted, particularly where there are tight timescales to appeal a decision. A failure to do so could put their business and reputation at risk and lead to severe financial consequences, especially where suspension of registration or cancellation of registration is pursued.

Facing Ofsted enforcement action?

If you are facing enforcement action by Ofsted, you should seek specialist legal advice in order to protect your interests and safeguard your registration. Our specialist Ofsted lawyers can advise you on the legal implications of this enforcement action and what action you should take. Where appropriate, our specialist Ofsted lawyers will seek to conclude matters as soon as possible, either through the submission of detailed written representations and evidence to Ofsted on your behalf or by providing robust and specialist representation at an appeal hearing. If you are facing prosecution, our Ofsted specialists will advise you on the appropriate strategy and provide effective representation throughout.

For a confidential discussion with one of our specialist Ofsted lawyers, please contact us on 0161 696 6250 or complete our online enquiry form.

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