The needs assessment process for an EHC plan shouldn't take longer than 20 weeks from the date we receive the request.

See our EHC plan timeline to find out what happens during each stage of the needs assessment process for education, health and care plans.

Or read about the process in this table:

Stages of the EHC plan process

Stages of the EHC plan process

0 to 20 weeks

Stage 1

We've had the request for a needs assessment for an EHC plan. 

This is the start date 

Stage 2

We've made a decision about the needs assessment request. We've let you know our decision and next steps.

If agreed, the needs assessment for an EHC plan will gather information on the child or young person and their needs.


By 6 weeks.

As soon as the decision is made. 

Stage 3

We've made a decision on an EHC plan and have let you know whether it's been agreed or not. 

We've sent a draft EHC plan to you. You have 15 calendar days to check through the draft and tell us any concerns or to request changes or a meeting. 


By 16 weeks

Stage 4

We've sent you a final EHC plan. 


By 20 weeks.

What does an EHC plan look like?

Your EHC plan should be based around you, your needs and wishes. See what a blank EHC plan looks like.

Education and Early Help (SEND) Team

Name: Education and Early Help (SEND) Team near you
Full contact details