Ask Sheila - Archive England

Sheila Scott OBE has now retired and therefore is no longer available to answer your social care questions. However, you might still find the answer you’ve been searching for down below.

27th January 2016

No Lifting Policy

If a client has fallen and is unable to get up by themselves without assistance, must care organisation tell their staff to dial 999 and not attempt to get them off the floor, as they have a "no lifting" policy?

Is it legal and/or appropriate for care organisations to have this kind of blanket "no lifting" policy?


Dear Terry,

Thank you for your question.

If you have a No Lifting Policy then you may need to review what this means.

This is a decision taken by the service provider.

I have checked with the Health and Safety Executive and they have some really useful information on their website at

One of the Frequently Asked Questions on their website is Is there such a thing as a 'no lifting' policy?

Answer: The Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992 (as amended) do not prohibit individual types of manual handling or endorse 'no lifting' policies. However, manual handling should be limited to those times when it cannot be avoided and only where the risk has been assessed and minimised. Employers cannot simply pass on the risk to employees and a balanced approach to risk is advocated to ensure that workers are not required to perform tasks that put them at unreasonable risk.

I hope this is helpful.

Best wishes.


*All information is correct at the time of publishing.

About Sheila

Sheila Scott OBE has now retired and over the years , prior to her retirement she has answered thousands of your social questions. You can still access the many questions below.

For Sheila Scott OBE as the former CEO of National Care Association (NCA), care is Sheila's life. She possesses a strong command of the issues facing the care sector informed by her long career as a nursing professional, the owner and manager of a care business, and as a leader in the care sector.

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