Guidance on leaving the register voluntarily
Guidance on leaving the register
Last updated: 21 July 2020
- About this guidance
- Your decision to leave the register
- Requesting to leave the register
- Circumstances where voluntary removal is not permitted
- Consideration of your request
- Further information
About this guidance
This guidance is for people who are currently registered with Social Work England and are considering leaving the register.
Your decision to leave the register
There are a number of reasons why you may wish to be removed from the register, either temporarily or permanently. For example, you may want to take a career break, practise abroad, make a career change, or retire.
If you plan to rejoin the Social Work England register in the near future, you might want to consider staying on the register as you will be charged a restoration fee when you apply to rejoin.
If you do choose to stay on the register, you must make sure you continue to meet our CPD requirements throughout your registration.
Requesting to leave the register
You can request to be removed from the register through your online Social Work England account. Once we’ve reviewed your request, we’ll remove your entry from the register unless the circumstances outlined in the next section apply to you.
Alternatively, if you do not wish to set up on online account for this purpose, you may send us an email from the email address we hold on your registration record. This is so that we can be sure that the request is coming from you. Please include “request for voluntary removal” in the subject line and include all of the declarations listed below in your email message.
Please note that we will not refund any portion of your registration fee regardless of when you leave the register.
Alternatively, you may choose not to renew your registration. This will result in you being automatically removed from the register at the beginning of the next registration period (annually on 1 December) or on 1 June if you are removed due to failure to pay the second part of your registration fee.
Your registration status will show as “failed to renew” on the public facing register. There are some circumstances where you must renew your registration even if you will not be practising. These are outlined in the next section.
You must not practise as a social worker in England once your name has been removed from the Social Work England register. If you wish to rejoin the register, you’ll need to apply for restoration.
Circumstances where voluntary removal is not permitted
There are certain circumstances where your request to leave the register will be refused. If these circumstances apply to you at the end of the current registration period (annually 30 November), you must renew your registration even if you will not be practising.
You will be unable to leave the register voluntarily if you are:
- subject to ongoing fitness to practise proceedings
- in the process of appealing a decision made by Social Work England, either to Social Work England directly or to the County Court or High Court
If you make a request to leave the register and these circumstances apply to you, we’ll contact you to discuss your request.
For more information about about circumstances where voluntary removal is not permitted see:
- The Social Workers Regulations 2018, reg 14(c)(i) and reg 14(c)(ii).
Consideration of your request
When we receive your request for voluntary removal we’ll hold your request on file for at least ten working days. This is in the public interest, in case a concern is raised, we can hold jurisdiction of your registration.
This period may overlap with us taking a fee payment. Please note that we will not refund any portion of your registration fee regardless of when you leave the register.
If we permit your request for voluntary removal we will notify you via your online account or by email with a confirmation. Your name will remain on our searchable register with the status “no longer registered –voluntary removal”.
Before you submit your request to leave the register, you will be asked to confirm that you:
- are unaware of any current allegation, investigation, proceedings or order which may result in action being taken against you
- understand that until your name is removed from the register you may continue to receive communications from us
- wish to remove your name from our register
- understand and agree that once your name has been removed from the register you will not practise in England using the protected title of ‘social worker’ without becoming registered again with Social Work England or any subsequent body fulfilling a similar regulatory role.
For more information about voluntary removal, please call us on 0808 196 2274 or email us on [email protected].