When agencies become accredited, there may be conditions placed on them. They also take on reporting obligations under the Reportable Conduct Scheme and the Standards for Permanent Care.
Conditions on accredited agencies
All designated agencies must comply with the conditions of accreditation in Schedule 3 to the Children's Guardian Regulation 2022. Adoption service providers must comply with the conditions of accreditation in Schedule 5 to the Children's Guardian Regulation 2022.
Clause 12 of Schedule 3A and clause 12 of Schedule 3B to the Children's Guardian Act 2019 give the Children's Guardian the power to impose additional conditions on an agency's accreditation. This may include limiting it to providing services relating to only one type of care.
Your agency will be notified of any conditions applied at the time of accreditation. The Children's Guardian can cancel these conditions or impose new ones at any time.
If an agency fails to comply with the conditions of accreditation, the Children's Guardian can take action, including suspending, shortening or cancelling the agency's accreditation.
Conditions applying to provisionally accredited agencies
If your agency has provisional accreditation, the following conditions will apply.
- Your agency must notify us in writing within one working day when it first makes arrangements to provide statutory out-of-home care or adoptions services.
- Your agency must notify us in writing within one working day when it first provides adoption services.
- Your agency must provide direct evidence for assessment. This should include information about all subsequent out-of-home care placements or adoption services.
- Your agency must maintain records of practice relevant to the safety, welfare and well-being of children and young people placed with it. You must make these available to us on request, in an approved format.
Reportable conduct responsibilities
Accredited agencies must notify and investigate certain allegations (reportable allegations) of abuse involving a child or young person in care when the allegation is against someone they employ, authorise, engage or contract in circumstances outlined by the Children’s Guardian Act 2019.
Reportable allegations should be notified through the Reportable Conduct Scheme.
Children under 12 placed in residential care
Residential care providers must notify us in writing each time a child under 12 years of age is placed in residential statutory out-of-home care. If that placement ends before the child turns 12, you must also notify us.
You should do this via the portal for accredited agencies or if you do not have access to the portal you can use the forms below.
Reviewing a condition of accreditation
If your agency objects to our accreditation decision or a condition imposed by the Children's Guardian on its accreditation, you have the right to request a review using the following steps.
Step 1: Internal review
An independent person from our office undertakes an internal review. After the review, the Children's Guardian may decide to do one of the following:
- Affirm the decision or condition of accreditation
- Vary the decision or condition of accreditation
- Set aside the original decision or condition and make a new decision
We will notify your agency in writing of the outcome and the reasons for the Children's Guardian's decision.
Step 2: Further review
If you object to the findings of our internal review, you may apply to the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) for external review.
NCAT can review any decision by the Children’s Guardian to:
- accredit or not accredit an organisation
- specify the type of adoption services that can be provided
- impose or not impose a condition on the agency's accreditation
- vary or revoke a condition of accreditation
- shorten , suspend or cancel an agency’s accreditation
- refuse to make an accreditation decision.
Your agency will need to lodge an application for NCAT review. You can contact NCAT for an application form and assistance.
If NCAT decides in your agency’s favour, then it may:
- vary the decision
- replace the decision with its own decision
- set aside the decision and ask us to follow its directions or recommendations.