Provider ordered to pay £16,322 for running Somerset care agency illegally

Published: 14 July 2021 Page last updated: 14 July 2021

A provider of a Somerset-based domiciliary care agency has been fined £5,000 after admitting to providing care illegally, at North Somerset Magistrates’ Court on Thursday, 8 July. The company was also ordered to pay £11,141 costs and a £181 victim surcharge as a result of the prosecution brought by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). In passing sentence, the Judge remarked as follows:

‘A troubling feature of the case is that when drawn to (Girl Friday Somerset Limited’s) attention and the company being told to desist, it chose not to heed warnings and continued to provide care up to January 2020.’

Pearl Leyshon, a director of the company, entered a guilty plea on behalf of the company to providing a regulated activity – personal care – in people’s own homes through Girl Friday Somerset Limited, without CQC registration, which is a criminal offence.

Personal care includes assisting people to eat and drink, dress, bathe and use the toilet.

CQC brought the prosecution after it received information from a former member of staff and feedback from representatives of people who had used Girl Friday Somerset Limited. Girl Friday Somerset Limited remains unregistered with the CQC.

Emma Boger, CQC’s head of registration - quality and risk assurance, said:

“It is unacceptable that the director of Girl Friday Somerset Limited risked people’s safety by running a care service without the benefit of CQC registration, so I welcome the guilty plea.

“The registration process is important to appropriately assess services before they care for people. Services are then monitored and inspected to ensure that they continue to meet standards that people should be able to expect.

“Unregistered services operate without oversight, putting people at risk of harm.

“Monitoring of domiciliary care agencies is especially important, as people who receive care in their own homes can be particularly vulnerable because of their circumstances.

“When we find providers operating illegally, we do not hesitate to act to protect people.”

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About the Care Quality Commission

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of health and social care in England.

We make sure health and social care services provide people with safe, effective, compassionate, high-quality care and we encourage care services to improve.

We monitor, inspect and regulate services to make sure they meet fundamental standards of quality and safety and we publish what we find to help people choose care.