Hi, sorry I was offline by the time you had replied and have been in tribunal most of today.
There are two separate issues here – one is where you were able to provide a reference internally, based on your employer’s policies and procedures. The other is the actual contents of the reference.
If this was a personal reference, not sent from the employer and if you did not use company letterhead or otherwise make it appear that this was an official company reference, then you should not be too concerned about internal policies and what you may have breached. However, if you made this out to be an official company reference, then you need to ensure you had the authority to do so, otherwise this could be an internal misconduct issue for breaching rules/procedures.
In terms of the contents of the reference, then it would depend on what your knowledge at the time was and whether you negligently or knowingly provided false information. This is very much a factual issue that depends on the circumstances and on what you knew about the person you were discussing. So in your case you did not know that they were subject to disciplinary action and it would be difficult to argue that you knowingly provided false information. However, the issue then is whether this was done negligently. For example, should a reasonable person in your position known the true information. This could be if you had the resources to check this and should have done so before making a statement to confirm your comments. This would vary from one case to another so it depends on what was available to you, what checks you could have made and so on.
So at this stage, it is just an investigation and no guarantee you will be facing any formal charges of any kind. It depends on whether they can show you knowingly or negligently provided the false information but you have a defence you can use and need to stick to your story and maintain your innocence, highlighting that you were never informed about the disciplinary action in question.
Yes you may do so but that won't automatically remove the original offence, if one has occurred. Also it won't stop the GMC's involvement, but no real harm in trying to explain the situation as it happened.
You are welcome, all the best
We have an ongoing bug unfortunately which could prevent you from leaving feedback so you can just type it here instead and we can process that manually, many thanks
Many thanks, XXXXX XXXXX best