How long does a criminal record last in the UK?

How long does a criminal record last in the UK?

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The question of how long a criminal record lasts in the UK or shows on a DBS check depends on the nature of the crime and the type of DBS check. This may sound rather confusing, but DBS Check Online can offer expert guidance to help you get through a DBS Check quickly and successfully. And if you would like to know the answers to any DBS-related question, such as how long is a DBS valid in the UK, check out our blogs.

Since 2006, the Police National Computer has retained details of all recordable offenses until the person reaches 100 years of age. However, although your conviction will always show on police records, the sentence will not necessarily be disclosed on your (DBS) criminal record check used to vet employees.

Different levels of DBS Checks

Basic Level

As its name suggests, the Basic Level checks records of criminal convictions held on the Police National Computer. Cautions are also included. If 11 years have passed from the time of sentence, there is a good chance it will not show on this type of check, although some crimes, such as murder and sexual violence, will remain indefinitely. If the offense did not result in a prison sentence, it is highly likely it will not show up in a Basic Level DBS check after 11 years. Basic disclosures can be required by any employer as evidence of good character.

Standard DBS Check

The next level of detail, a Standard DBS check, is used by many employers. It contains information on all cautions, spent and unspent convictions, reprimands, and final warnings held on central police records. Employers commonly use this level in the finance and legal sector and general positions of high authority, where there must be no history of fraud or other types of financial wrongdoing. There is no limit on how long a Standard DBS can check a person’s criminal record history as they show unspent convictions. However, the length of time it lasts depends on the employer. Some demand renewals every three years, others none, and some every year.

Enhanced DBS Check

Enhanced DBS checks are the most detailed and are only available to employers who need to request them on behalf of the applicant. It contains the same information as provided in the Standard DBS check and if the candidate or employee is included on the Children’s Barred List or Adult First list. It is used by education and healthcare employers who need to know if the candidate is suitable to work with children or vulnerable adults.

If you want to find out what information is likely to be disclosed before submitting a DBS check application, you can apply for a Subject Access Request via the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) Criminal Record Office (ACRO). Contact DBS Check Online for more information.

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