Changes to accreditation
Accreditation of a provider will terminate if either:
- they provide written confirmation to the Scottish Government of their wish to terminate
- if the Scottish Government withdraws their accreditation. See the section on withdrawals.
After termination of their accreditation, accredited providers must continue to provide the same service to existing clients until the earliest of the following events:
- expiry of a client's lease
- the transfer of the client's lease to another accredited provider as decided by the accreditation committee or review committee
An accredited provider's accreditation may be withdrawn by the Scottish Government if they breach any of the contracted conditions.
The Scottish Government will:
- notify the applicant in writing with details of their intention to withdraw accreditation
- Send any relevant material will be sent to show the reasons for withdrawal
The accredited provider may:
- send written representation in response to the notification of withdrawal
- request a face-to-face or virtual meeting to provide representation
Written representation should be sent no later than 6 weeks from the date of the notification of withdrawal.
Face to face or virtual representation
To request face-to-face or virtual representation, the applicant should send written notice to the Scottish Government no later than 3 weeks from the date of the notification of withdrawal.
In the notification of withdrawal, the applicant may be asked to attend an oral hearing. The applicant may wish to be represented at the hearing. If so they should send the Scottish Government written notification of the representative's name, address and occupation within the timeframe specified.
Decisions on withdrawal
The accreditation committee will hold an oral hearing where they will consider all representations made by or on behalf of the applicant and all other relevant material. A decision will be made whether to withdraw the accreditation in whole or in part.
The accreditation committee may also decide to disqualify the applicant from making a further application for a period of up to 3 years. The period of disqualification will be set a reasonable time in all circumstances. An applicant may be disqualified for circumstances such as:
- they been guilty of serious misrepresentation in supplying the information required to determine whether they meet the minimum selection criteria
- they have either:
- tried to unduly influence the decision-making process of the Scottish Government
- tried to obtain confidential information that may provide unfair advantages in the accreditation process
- negligently provided misleading information that may have a material influence on decisions concerning exclusion or accreditation.
The accredited provider will be sent written notification of the decision within 2 weeks of the decision being made.
An accredited provider's accreditation may be temporarily suspended if:
- their membership of, or registration with, a professional regulatory body is suspended or otherwise temporarily removed, resulting in a breach of the standard conditions
- a condition to similar effect has been breached
- they are not able to demonstrate their ability to deliver the minimum standards of service
The accreditation committee will send the applicant written notification of suspension within 2 weeks of the decision being made.
When an applicant's accreditation is suspended they must:
- not accept any new clients to the scheme
- continue to meet their obligations to existing clients under the scheme
Applicants may ask for a review of a decision in relation to either:
- their application
- their withdrawal
To request a review, applicants should email the Scottish Government at AVE@gov.scot within 4 weeks after being notified of the decision.
In the email, the applicant should both:
- specify which decision a review is being requested for
- include any written representations they wish to be considered
The outcome of reviews will be determined by the review committee. The Scottish Government will appoint a minimum of two of its members to form the review committee. This will include the convener who will chair the committee.
Members will be appointed from the Senior Civil Service at the level of deputy director or above. One of the members will hold a post in a different Scottish Government Directorate.
We will not allow members of the accreditation committee who made the decision under review to be members of the Review Committee.
Decisions will be taken by simple majority. If the review committee cannot agree, the chairperson will have the final decision.
The committee will be able to regulate its own procedures for dealing with matters, subject to the rules of the scheme.
If a committee member has a connection to an applicant, they should disclose this and immediately withdraw from the process.
This connection could be either:
- a close, direct, personal or financial connection
- a connection to a subsidiary or parent entity of the applicant
Once they withdraw, they will:
- take no further part in deliberation or decision-making in relation to the applicant
- not be present during any discussion of the applicant
- be replaced by an alternative Review Committee member
An alternative member will be appointed, subject to the same membership terms.
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