Publication - Advice and guidance

Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA):national guidance 2016

Published: 3 Mar 2016
Safer Communities Directorate
Part of:
Law and order

Ministerial guidance to responsible authorities on the discharge of their obligations under section 10 of the Management of Offenders etc. (Scotland) Act 2005.

Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA):national guidance 2016
Document 6B

Document 6B

MAPPA Risk Assessment Template:

Completion Notes

The Risk Assessment section will evidence a structured professional judgment approach and will set out a summary of the key information and findings of the risk assessment. The Risk Assessment will demonstrate:

  • A thorough review of the information;
  • the use of approved and appropriate risk assessment tools
  • the application of structured professional judgement to help identify relevant and critical risk and protective factors and to provide a framework
  • a formulation of risk that includes the nature, severity, imminence, frequency and likelihood of reoffending;

Basis of Assessment

The risk assessment will be completed and where possible made available to group members in advance of the meeting.

Assessments should draw on a range of sources relevant to social, health and offending related issues and should include file, collateral and interview information.

Identify and list the key documents and sources of historical and current information that have informed the risk assessment and Risk Management Plan ( RMP).

This may include interview information, reports, chronologies, risk and need assessments, police intelligence, minutes of meetings and multi-agency discussions, records of correspondence, and case file reviews.

It will be important to consider needs alongside risk where the individual being assessed has specific needs or vulnerabilities (such as in the case of young people or those with a mental disorder). The range of sources should reflect this.

Concise Case Summary

The purpose of this section is to provide the reader with an overview of the key information that is known about the offender based on a review of the case. The information provided should be relevant to the risk assessment and management planning process. The summary should commence with a short bullet point list of the most salient facts of the case.

The remainder of the section should provide a synopsis of any additional information that is relevant to the development of the RMP. The level of detail included in this section should be proportionate to the case without the unnecessary duplication of information contained elsewhere in the RMP.

Analysis of Offending and Risk Formulation

A formulation of risk is an explanation of offending behaviour.

The purpose is to identify the factors which cause, trigger, maintain or prevent offending behaviour in order to understand the interaction and respective role of each factor in an episode of offending.

The aim is to identify the most appropriate means of preventing further offending and encourage rehabilitation.

This section includes a review of offending behaviour, an offence analysis, and the identification of relevant risk and protective factors. When considered together, these aspects should lead to an understanding or a formulation of the risk.

To support meaningful communication, the conclusions regarding risk of serious harm should be summarised in terms of the pattern, nature, seriousness, likelihood and imminence of offending.

A formulation is a hypothesis and as such should be subject to testing and review in light of emerging information.

Brief History of Offending

Provide a brief offence history. Note any offences which are of particular concern or which indicate a pattern. Where there is reference to unconfirmed or alleged information, ensure that it is clearly marked as such and that its relevance and reliability is appropriately weighted.

  • Provide a brief summary of the index offence including details of:
  • the circumstances surrounding the offence;
  • a description of the events and degree of planning involved
  • who was harmed, the seriousness and the outcome, and
  • the offenders reaction or response to the offence.

Describe the Cycle

Describe the cycle of events, thoughts, feelings and behaviours that precede and follow an episode of seriously harmful offending in order to inform your identification of the relevant risk factors that may contribute to the harmful behaviour and those factors that may interrupt or prevent the cycle from occurring.

It may be helpful to consider the antecedents, behaviours and consequences associated with the episodes of offending.

Identify the Relevance of Key Factors

Drawing on the offence analysis and the findings of any relevant risk assessment tools, list the identified risk and protective factors which will be targeted within the RMP and explain how they relate to an episode of seriously harmful behaviour.

Risk factors can be considered in four broad categories which inform risk management planning in different ways.

Identifying the risk factors under these four headings can assist in understanding their relevance by exploring how they function in the occurrence of offending behaviour. Understanding the part that risk and protective factors play helps in identifying the risk management activities or approaches that are appropriate to address the risk. It also assists in identifying the scenarios that need to be managed in order to prevent or reduce the risk of serious harm.

Agreed Level of Risk of Serious Harm

The MAPPA Risk level definitions are as follows:

Very High: There is imminent risk of serious harm. The potential event is more likely than not to happen imminently, and the impact could be serious.

High: There are identifiable indicators of risk of serious harm. The potential event could happen at any time and the impact could be serious.

Medium: There are identifiable indicators of risk of serious harm. This person has the potential to cause harm, but is unlikely to do so unless there is a change of circumstances.

Low: Current evidence does not indicate likelihood of causing serious harm.