A care home group with more than 30 homes in Scotland has gone into administration, creating uncertainty for residents.
Four Seasons has appointed Alvarez and Marsal to carry out the process following an aborted sale attempt.
The firm insists its homes will be unaffected by the move and there will be no change for residents, families, employees and suppliers.
Four Seasons has 322 homes, including more than 30 north of the border.
Politicians and Age Scotland, the charity for older people, are calling for reassurances for residents.
Scottish Conservative health spokesman Miles Briggs said: “Social care services in Scotland are already over capacity and if any Four Seasons care homes were to close it would have serious repercussions for the provision of social care in that area.
“We need to see urgent steps taken to stabilise the situation and support finding a future for the company.
“It is crucial that the Scottish Government ensures operations at these care homes continue.”
Four Seasons has homes across Scotland including in Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Fife, Perth and Angus.
Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesman Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP said: “This will be a deeply worrying time for hundreds of Four Seasons residents and staff. People’s jobs and people’s care is being put at risk.”
He added: “This is further evidence that the contemporary model of social care in a care home setting is in fundamental need of a rethink.
“We need an effective and efficient NHS and care system which will be there for our loved ones when they need it.”
Brian Sloan, Age Scotland chief executive, said: “This news demonstrates the significant challenges faced by the social care sector if one of the biggest operators in the business is facing administration.
“No doubt alarm bells will be ringing at the highest levels of the Scottish Government and local authorities, who should be looking at how they ensure continuity of care if no buyer is found for the business.
“It is vital that those people at the heart of this, the residents, families and staff of the large number of care homes operated by Four Seasons, are given reassurance that there will be no change to their care as today’s news will be a worrying time for them all.”
A&M will now try to sell the group out of administration.
Dr Claire Royston, group medical director of Four Seasons, said: “Today’s news does not change the way we operate or how our homes are run or prompt any change for residents, families, employees and indeed suppliers.
“Our priority remains to deliver consistently good care.
“It marks the latest stage in the group’s restructuring process and allows us to move ahead with an orderly, independent sales process.”
A Scottish Government spokesman said: “We recognise the announcement made by Four Seasons Healthcare Group may be unsettling for people at Four Seasons’ homes and for their families.
“We understand that this is part of a continuing process in the company’s financial restructuring and are advised that the group’s key priority remains to continue to provide quality care.
“The Care Inspectorate will continue to monitor the services and care experienced by people at all Four Seasons’ homes in Scotland to ensure everyone who relies on their services continues to experience care which meets their needs, rights and choices.”