A home care provider based in Portsmouth has been ordered to pay more than £44,000 after it was found to be operating illegally for five years.
The owners of Golden Years Caring at Home, located in Cosham, were prosecuted by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) after it was discovered that the business had been operating since March 2015 without registering with the watchdog.
The directors were fined £34,833 at Portsmouth Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday (June 10). They were also ordered to pay a £170 victim surcharge and £9,000 in costs as a result of the prosecution brought by the CQC.
This is one of the largest fines handed out to an unregistered provider.
The CQC initially received information from Portsmouth City Council about the provider in September 2017.
The regulator contacted Golden Years Caring at Home about not being registered from October 2017 to September 2019. The directors then made several failed attempts to register with CQC, but they did not meet the standards required so a decision was made to refuse their registration.
The company entered a guilty plea prior to the hearing, admitting it had carried out regulated activity without the required registration, breaching section 10 of the Health and Social Care Act 2008.
Joyce Frederick, Deputy Chief Inspector of Registration at the CQC, said: “Providers of personal care services deal with people whose circumstances make them vulnerable and who may not be able to report abuse or poor care. Where we find providers operating outside of the law, we do not hesitate to act to protect people.
“The law requires care agencies to register with the Care Quality Commission to protect people needing care in their own homes. It ensures all care providers are monitored and inspected, meaning safe care and treatment is maintained.
“This is one of the largest fines handed out to an unregistered provider. I would hope the size of this fine would send a very clear message to anyone thinking of operating a service without registering with the Care Quality Commission.”