Certification Process

The CARES certification process is a multi-stage process: -

  • A formal application for approval.
  • A desktop review of a firm’s existing management system documentation to determine compliance with the relevant management system standard
  • A stage 1 assessment (preliminary inspection) at the firm’s premises
  • A stage 2 assessment at the firm’s premises to verify effective implementation of the relevant management system and to witness the preparation of product samples for independent testing at a UKAS accredited laboratory approved by CARES (if applicable)
  • Subject to a satisfactory stage 2 assessment and product testing the CARES CEO may award the certificate.
  • Maintenance of approval will be based on satisfactory twice yearly (or annually depending on the CARES scheme) surveillance inspection audits and product testing (where applicable)
  • Product conformity certificates are valid for one year and are renewed annually subject to satisfactory audits and product testing.
  • Management system certificates are valid over a three-year certification cycle
  • A firm’s scope of approval may be extended or reduced at any time following formal notification to CARES and subject to some or all of the stages above. Firms are notified of the process for extending or reducing the scope by the relevant CARES Scheme Manager

Applicants will be refused certification if the applicant fails to meet the requirements of the relevant CARES scheme. The applicant will be informed of the decision by the CARES CEO in writing.

Approved firms certificates may be withdrawn or suspended if the approved firm fails to meet the requirements of the relevant CARES scheme. The final decision will be taken by the CARES CEO and the approved firm notified in writing.

A right to appeal against such decisions is available to the applicant or approved firm.

Please note:- detailed information regarding the certification and appeals process and other CARES regulations  is contained in the relevant CARES scheme manual. The relevant scheme manual is sent to all new applicants. Approved firms receive all scheme updates automatically from the CARES office.