This year's annual returns are now closed. We would like to thank everyone who submitted their annual return to us by the deadline, Sunday 17 March 2024. The information you have provided will help us plan, inform and carry out our inspections and improvement work.

Each year, we ask service providers to complete an annual return to help us plan, inform and carry out our inspections and improvement work. 

We also publish a number of annual statistical publications and share some of the information with other organisations, such as the Scottish Social Services Council and the Scottish Government.

The intelligence we gather through annual returns helps us target our improvement activity and support within social care. It is a great source of baseline data across a variety of health and wellbeing indicators which we use to identify, drive and track improvement, for example infection control, nutrition and the recruitment and retention of staff.  The data also helps us to identify trends and topics by both geographical area or service type, so that we can see where best to focus our improvement support work, for example, improvement workshops or new resources and guidance for care services across the sector.

Based on feedback we have received from providers and their representative groups about the pressures and challenging context that the sector is currently facing, we have extended the annual return submission period for an additional four weeks. We understand these challenges and are committed to supporting services as much as we can.  As part of this, we hope this extension will allow more time for this work to be undertaken. 

All service types must complete their annual returns electronically, using our eForms system. It is important that services regularly check their eForms account to make sure that their email address is up to date, and that only authorised people have access to their account. All services should check their eForms email address.

Even inactive services must submit an annual return.

We no longer automatically downgrade services for failing to submit an annual return. This is because we do not believe that non-submission is necessarily a reflection of poor quality of service. We will, however, continue to publish details about submission or non-submission of annual returns within inspection reports. We also reserve the right to make a formal requirement relating to submission of an annual return, or in cases of serious or persistent non-compliance, to issue an improvement notice under s62 of the Public Services Reform (Scotland) Act 2010, requiring its submission.

Please note that where the manager of the service has changed, you must formally notify the Care Inspectorate of the correct details. This can be done using our online digital portal.  

Related documents

If you have any questions about the annual returns, please read our frequently asked questions.

Find out what has changed in the 2023-24 annual return.