COVID-19 – impact on relevant entities
We understand that the COVID-19 pandemic may at times impact the capacity of relevant entities to fulfil their obligations under the Reportable Conduct Scheme including meeting reporting and investigation timeframes.
The paramount consideration when responding to reportable allegations must be the safety, welfare and wellbeing of children. To the extent possible, we also expect that entities direct their resources to minimise the impact on employees who are the subject of reportable allegations.
Offences and penalties
Some relevant entities hold concerns about the penalties for noncompliance with reportable conduct obligations under the Children’s Guardian Act – specifically the 7-day, 30-day and entity reporting obligations.
- most of the offences include ‘reasonable excuse’ exceptions
- the Children’s Guardian has discretion over whether to issue a penalty notice for non-compliance.
Relevant entities must continue to notify the Children’s Guardian of any new reportable allegations they become aware of. Notify us using the 7-day notification form. (PDF 137.3KB)
Notifications are required within 7 business days of the head of the relevant entity becoming aware of the reportable allegations. However, a failure to comply with the 7-day timeframe is not an offence in circumstances where the head of the relevant entity has a reasonable excuse. Where a notification is submitted outside this timeframe, please ensure you include the reasons for any delay at part 1.3 of the notification form.
If you are delayed in notifying a particularly serious matter, please contact to discuss the steps you are taking to manage any associated risks on (02) 8219 3800.
The Children’s Guardian Act requires a relevant entity to submit an interim report to the Children’s Guardian within 30 calendar days of becoming aware of a reportable allegation or conviction (unless exempted or an entity report is submitted – see below). Notify us using the 30-day interim report form. (PDF 112.9KB)
While there is no statutory exception to this obligation, be assured that the Children’s Guardian exercises discretion for non-compliance with this requirement.
Investigations and entity reports
Unless exempted, heads of relevant entities are required to investigate, or arrange the investigation of, reportable allegations or convictions as soon as practicable after receiving a report, and these investigations must be completed within a reasonable time.
Unless exempted, or there is a reasonable excuse, relevant entities must prepare and submit an entity report to the Children’s Guardian after completing an investigation of a reportable allegation or a determination of a reportable conviction. Notify us using the Entity report form (PDF 135.8KB) with relevant supporting documentation attached.
Please alert us to any likely delays your entity is facing in conducting investigations or preparing investigation reports. This is best done case-by-case using the interim report. However, if your entity has a high volume of active reportable allegations or widespread service disruptions, please contact us to discuss your circumstances.
All the forms are available on our notification forms page.
Enquiries about the Reportable Conduct Scheme
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Phone: (02) 8219 3800 – if we are on the line to another caller, you may need to leave a voicemail and we will return your call.
If your enquiry is urgent and you are asked to leave a voicemail, please provide details of the nature of the urgency in your voicemail.
Briefings and training
The Reportable Conduct Directorate has suspended face-to-face briefings and training until further notice. Online training is available as part of our eLearning program. To go to the Responding to Reportable Allegations eLearning course, log in or register at www.ocg.nsw.gov.au/elearning.
When face to face training resumes, completion of the eLearning modules may be a prerequisite.
More information about the Reportable Conduct Scheme is also available on our fact sheets page.