Renewal of SGC/FAC - medical report fee

To the experts out there:

I am in the process of renewing my SGC & FAC (through Police Scotland). I was aware that the process had changed in England and Wales to include a fee for a medical report submitted by your GP. I now see that this has extended north of the border as well.

Speaking to the GP's surgery, they are saying that there is a £50 charge for the medical report. This seems a fairly hefty amount of money to add onto the £65 charge for the renewal process. This is not a cheap sport & I'm struggling to see how they can justify a further cost to the renewal process.

My questions are - is this medical report mandatory? Am I being unduly bolshie in being a bit unhappy about having to pay this, and what happens if I don't pay? Or is it simply easier to stump up and get it done & dusted?

Thank you in advance.
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
The law was supposed to be that the police received your application and they applied to your gp for the required information!
Too many GPs just refused to comply and the police were hit with charges for reports that didn’t comply!
I sent off my application and sent the message forms to my gp who refused to complete them!
My fac and sgc arrived with no bill for the medical papers!
 
The law was supposed to be that the police received your application and they applied to your gp for the required information!
Too many GPs just refused to comply and the police were hit with charges for reports that didn’t comply!
I sent off my application and sent the message forms to my gp who refused to complete them!
My fac and sgc arrived with no bill for the medical papers!
Thank you. The GP has the paperwork, if he does not complete them then it's up to him. I have my interview with the FEO over the telephone on Thursday, so will see if any delays/issues are flagged there. Every other hoop has been jumped through!
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
Thank you. The GP has the paperwork, if he does not complete them then it's up to him. I have my interview with the FEO over the telephone on Thursday, so will see if any delays/issues are flagged there. Every other hoop has been jumped through!
I made a point of telling my feo that I had followed the letter of the law, he didn’t comment but it was returned all done within days
 
I made a point of telling my feo that I had followed the letter of the law, he didn’t comment but it was returned all done within days
Many thanks. I'm just a bit uneasy about seems to be nothing more than a cash grab!
 
I've just received a letter asking me to renew my shot gun license two years earl, as It appears my renewal is a peak year! Is this a money grab?
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
I've just received a letter asking me to renew my shot gun license two years earl, as It appears my renewal is a peak year! Is this a money grab?
No you should end up with a sgc with a 6 year lifespan for the same money but the police don’t think they will have the time to do the renewal if they wait a year
 
To the experts out there:

I am in the process of renewing my SGC & FAC (through Police Scotland). I was aware that the process had changed in England and Wales to include a fee for a medical report submitted by your GP. I now see that this has extended north of the border as well.

Speaking to the GP's surgery, they are saying that there is a £50 charge for the medical report. This seems a fairly hefty amount of money to add onto the £65 charge for the renewal process. This is not a cheap sport & I'm struggling to see how they can justify a further cost to the renewal process.

My questions are - is this medical report mandatory? Am I being unduly bolshie in being a bit unhappy about having to pay this, and what happens if I don't pay? Or is it simply easier to stump up and get it done & dusted?

Thank you in advance.
Some of the info ref GP letters is here:

I did my co-term renewal and needed the GP letter. GP wouldn’t sign the form (on principle) so went via BASC who are accumulating the info and getting members to write to MP’s. They have a couple of GPs who will do the form for £45. Got my full GP records and sent off details to the ‘BASC friendly GP’ who signed the form. All okay.

It’s a ‘nause and borderline illegal. BASC were looking for judicial review but apparently the QC said it wasn’t worth it due to the wording eg ‘...where the chief officer of police is satisfied...’
 

jmb3296

Old-Salt
Thanks will crack on with it.
It’s a money grab by the gps. The cost goes to them.
The original slightly naive plan was that gps would sign that there patients were of sound mind, no reason why couldn’t have etc, and would place a mRker on the records for firearms if you ever displayed mental illness.
Some gps don’t want anything to do with it, it involves carrying a risk.
Others, vanishingly few, will oblige for their patients for free.
Most gps saw it as a cash generation opportunity. If they were required to do medical for having licences they charged for it so why not signing letters on behalf of someone else.
Anyone who has had any involvement with gps as a group know they wont do anything they are not paid for.
The go gets cash. The police back is covered! If the applicant really wants it they will pay it etc, win, win, tough on the applicant.
For my first go letter the go phoned me and asked me why on Earth I needed a shotgun!
He signed it though despite his views on shooting.
Cost me though. £65 I think.
 
I cannot think of any logical reason why SGC / FAC are issued at a County level as opposed to a national level. By which I mean, if you move house , into another County , your License has to be renewed by the new county.

I can think of plenty of reasons for the opposite case.
 

Oops

War Hero
I made a point of telling my feo that I had followed the letter of the law, he didn’t comment but it was returned all done within days
I did so too.
Wasn't at all pious in pointing out that I'd nether had a speeding fine or even parking ticket in my life either...
"Nobody's that perfect" was his reply before things deteriorated(he could be an arrser!)
At the time, as it was explained to me if the requested info from the Gp was made by Plod,Gp's were hammering em for £150 and upwards(to respond to a specific query)
For a 'run of the mill' renewals Gp's are well within their rights to refuse as it's not their job to do routine police admin...
My excellent Gp simply wouldn't, but then my 'issue' was escalated, advice was to pay Gp and claim it back from Plod as they HAD to pay for it.
He did it for me for £20 cos we both knew we'd never see any cash back....

I got my tickets back within a fortnight...

Not expecting an easy ride next time.
Gp has moved practice, we've moved with him just to be sure.
 

Mick9abf

War Hero
I’m largely in support of the medical report or rather the reasons behind it however, in Scotland, it was rolled out without enough input from the major stakeholders.

There are several horror stories of anti Dr’s not giving reports or excessive charges etc.

What should have been done from the outset was that prior to implementation there should have been a working group which set a ‘reasonable’ fixed fee for the letter and also a process to follow if your GP was anti gun and wouldn’t sign or made your life difficult. Perhaps that would have just been too simple.... I did read somewhere that someone got a copy of their medical record which apparently the GP is obliged to give you and sent that to Plod which worked but as everyone knows consistency isn’t renowned between licensing offices never mind GP’s.

The biggest issue I have with the whole process is the elephant in the room which surrounds mental health and FAC’s.

Until the Police realise that not every mental health illness automatically means the knee jerk of immediate suspension or revocation of certificates no one, especially FAC holders, are going to stick their heads above the parapet to ask for help.

That said the stigma and distrust on both sides needs to be addressed between individuals and licensing authorities.

Furthermore friends (often other FAC holders), who see an issue with a person who they knows mental health might have to make a difficult decision which in some cases may result in a seizure of firearms or may stop someone from committing suicide, I doubt many will though........

The gamekeepers welfare trust seem to be one of the only groups actively trying to adjust the balance and achieve greater understanding between the licensing authorities and the people with issues who can suffer more when by removing their firearms it can adversely effect their employment.


In short £50 isn’t the best or worst I’ve heard (think I was £30 but know someone who was £120 - same geographical area, different GP).
 

Oops

War Hero
Interesting bit here from the other side of the fence ....BMA
That's exactly the line my GP took, unfortunately my circumstances NOT MH but a cord injury necessitated a further follow up between certain specific dates...
Oh what fun ensued( after I agreed to pay, even though I shouldn't have)..
The way my records were presented there was a missing page or two in the chronological order, because my other health problem wasn't at all relevant or enquired after by Plod...
My stroppy Practice manager redacted anything pertaining on the pages they had printed, too, at Gp's instruction.
So then I'm stuck between arrsey Plod and stubborn Gp (who was perfectly, legally, compliant)....
They finally printed a huge sheaf of papers off redacting everything bar a few lines re. Cord injury.
I think Plods' independent medical adviser' got fed up in the end. (Everyone else had)
I'm now visited by an 'out of area' Feo..
Thoroughly decent bloke, no dramas!

Tickets are up next June.

"Seconds out....."
 

4(T)

LE
That's exactly the line my GP took, unfortunately my circumstances NOT MH but a cord injury necessitated a further follow up between certain specific dates...
Oh what fun ensued( after I agreed to pay, even though I shouldn't have)..
The way my records were presented there was a missing page or two in the chronological order, because my other health problem wasn't at all relevant or enquired after by Plod...
My stroppy Practice manager redacted anything pertaining on the pages they had printed, too, at Gp's instruction.
So then I'm stuck between arrsey Plod and stubborn Gp (who was perfectly, legally, compliant)....
They finally printed a huge sheaf of papers off redacting everything bar a few lines re. Cord injury.
I think Plods' independent medical adviser' got fed up in the end. (Everyone else had)
I'm now visited by an 'out of area' Feo..
Thoroughly decent bloke, no dramas!

Tickets are up next June.

"Seconds out....."

I think the Home Office deliberately drafted it this way, knowing full well that it would prove to be such an expensive embuggerance to shooters that another tranche of them would be encouraged to give up, or that newcomers to the sport would see even higher barriers to entry and be deterred.

Its pretty shocking how far the country has fallen that they can impose a fee/cost on people without any legal basis or funding rules, and also allow the Police such arbitrary powers over licensing.
 

skeetstar

Old-Salt
I think I saw a piece in a shotgun mag to the effect that if your GP is anti shooting, or wants to charge a high price for the report, there is a group of medics, who for a std fee, will access your records and write the requisite report.

Also it used to be that the police had to ask your GP for a report. If no response was recd within 14 days, then you SGC would be issued anyway .. has that changed?
 
If you live in a area where theres several doctors surgeries you can always move practice , phone around and ask what their policy and prices are .
 
I also believe you can have a full print off of your medical records foc , you could then get a shooting friendly doc from anywhere to sign you off .
 
My questions are - is this medical report mandatory? Am I being unduly bolshie in being a bit unhappy about having to pay this, and what happens if I don't pay? Or is it simply easier to stump up and get it done & dusted?
Yes, not particularly, you don't get your FAC, and yes...

Mrs. Gravelbelly has just done her most recent renewal; the only delay was chasing up the local Surgery to send the form off to Police Scotland. Once she'd got them to do it, her new FAC arrived three or four days later; pretty damn efficient, compared to some Licensing Authorities I've heard of.

(But then, we've always been blessed with decent Firearms Licensing Officers around here. I think my record for a variation was "come on up to Fettes, we'll fix it" and walking away with a revised European FAC inside 24hrs...)
 

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