The first responder will complete a referral form to pass the case to the SCA, who will log the referral and decide the case. Referral to the SCA is voluntary for adults and can happen only if the potential victim gives their permission by signing the referral form.
Informed consent is essential to the success of support for a potential/identified victim of modern slavery and human trafficking before and during the NRM process. In the case of children, their consent is not required, but they should still be provided with all relevant information on the process.
Please Note: The SCA will not accept referral forms for adults, which have not been signed by the individual.
What is the role of the Single Competent Authority?
The Single Competent Authority (SCA) (trained specialists) makes decisions on all NRM cases, regardless of the nationality or immigration status of the individual. In all referrals, the SCA must consider whether the person is a victim of any form of modern slavery (including human trafficking, slavery, servitude and forced or compulsory labour).
The SCA makes 2 decisions during the NRM process:
1) A reasonable grounds decision
- A decision within 5 workings day of referral to the NRM (where possible) on whether someone is a potential victim or not
2) A conclusive grounds decision
- A decision on whether someone is a victim or not
Upon receipt of a positive reasonable grounds decision, the NRM grants a minimum 45-day reflection and recovery period. During this time, the SCA gathers evidence to determine whether they consider someone to in fact be a victim.
Upon receipt of a positive conclusive ground decision, the victim will be granted another 45 days, amounting to a total 90 days reflection and recovery period
NRM forms should be completed by first responders and emailed to the Single Competent Authority (SCA) at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Read more about the National Referral Mechanism
MS1 Form – Complete if an adult doesn’t consent to the NRM
If the person has not consented to enter the NRM, they should not be referred into the NRM.
Instead, an ‘MS1: notification of a potential victim of modern slavery form’ should be sent to the Home Office at email@example.com.
All agencies can send an MS1 form, but this is compulsory for the police and local authorities under the Modern Slavery Act 2015.