When Safeguarding Duties Apply

Safeguarding duties apply to any adult (a person 18 years of age or above), regardless of mental capacity who:

  1. Has needs for Care and Support (whether these have been assessed or are being met by the Local Authority or not);
  2. Is experiencing, or at risk of experiencing abuse or neglect; and
  3. As a result of Care and Support needs is unable to protect themselves against the abuse or neglect.

This includes, but is not limited to adults with Care and Support needs being met:

  1. Through adult Care and Support;
  2. Through children's services (e.g. a 0-25 team or education services);
  3. By the NHS (e.g. in a hospital or through NHS Continuing Healthcare); and
  4. By a carer.
Which organisations the duty applies to

The primary safeguarding duties and responsibilities lie with the Local Authority as lead organisation for safeguarding under the Care Act.

However, all organisations and individuals directly involved (e.g. a care provider, teacher or carer) or indirectly involved (e.g. a commissioner) with any adult with Care and Support needs has clear responsibilities in relation to working together to reduce the risk of abuse and neglect, recognising and reporting abuse and neglect, and also to co-operate with the Local Authority in the support of any Enquiry it makes (or causes to be made).

When the duty does not apply

The safeguarding duties do not apply in prisons and other secure detainment services where prison governors and National Offender Management Systems have responsibility.