Other people's records

Seeing a living person's social care records

Someone else’s records can only be seen if they give their permission. This also applies if they are a close relative. Parents can only see their child’s records if they have legal parental responsibility. If the child can give consent, their permission must be sought.

To see someone else’s records, whether you are a relative, solicitor or someone advocating on someone’s behalf, you need to follow the instructions and complete the form on the apply for your social care records page

We will need to contact the other person to confirm their authorisation for you to see their records.

Applying on behalf of someone else 

If someone using our services is unable to apply themselves, you can apply on their behalf if you:

  • Have parental responsibility for them
  • Are the person named on a court protection order
  • Have enduring and legally valid power of attorney for them
  • Are their advocate

If you are acting on behalf of someone, but you do not have an official right to do so (as listed above), please contact us.

Seeing the records of someone who has died

Though technically a Freedom of Information request, it is unlikely that we will release the information. This is because the information is still subject to a duty of confidence and is of a very personal and sensitive nature. This is in line with guidance from the Information Commissioner's Office.

In order for us to disclose this information, we require: 

  • The request to be in writing - Please state your reasons under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. You do not need to complete the application form
  • Proof that the requester is a personal representative, or the executor or administrator of the deceased person’s estate

Once we have this information, the request will be processed and responded to within one calendar month. This is in line with the Data Protection Act 2018 and Access to Health Records 1990.

Send your written request to:

Head of Legal and Democratic Services
Southampton City Council
Civic Centre
SO14 7LY

Adoption records

Adoption records are covered by the Adoption Act 1976 and the Adoption Agencies Regulations 1983.

If you need to arrange to see adoption records, please contact Adopt South.

Appealing against a decision

If you have been refused access to social care records and you wish to appeal against the decision, you can write to the:

Director for People
Civic Centre
Southampton SO14 7LY

If you are not satisfied with the response received from the relevant Executive Director, you can write to the Information Commissioner for a ruling on the decision. The address is:

Information Commissioner
Wycliffe House
Water Lane